Channel Post speaks to Sanmeet Kochhar, the General Manager for Middle East at HMD Global about the company’s plans for the Nokia phone brand
How do you plan to differentiate Nokia now from other vendors out there on the market?
We know our consumers want simple, easy to use and fast UI. The best way to deliver this proposition is to align 100 percent to Android reference designs and Google Mobile Services. This has allowed us to become the first manufacturer to commit to monthly security updates and deliver Android platform updates faster. Difference is our commitment to monthly security updates, the fact that we keep our UI pure by not preloading anything and the discipline to follow the reference designs. Pure, safe and up-to-date.
Nokia has had some misfortunes dealing with Symbian and Windows Phone. How is it going to be different with Android now?
There is a lot of love and trust for the Nokia brand. We believe that by putting our customers’ needs forward we can bring quality, useful, reliable phones to all consumers irrespective of budget or geography. We have already seen this in China with Nokia 6 and we plan to replicate this success in other markets. We are asset light and very nimble. Through our partnerships we have unrivaled insight in to the wants and needs of consumers. This unique partnership approach keeps us fresh and gives us unparalleled insights into customers’ needs.
At MWC this year, you launched a series of new devices. When will these be available?
At MWC 2017, we launched our first smartphone range. The Nokia 6, Nokia 6 Arte Black limited edition, Nokia 5 and Nokia 3. We also reimagined the Nokia 3310 with a new, modern design. The products will be available in APAC, India, Middle East, Africa and Europe in Q2 2017. We are currently working with operators, retailers and distributors. You will hear more about this later on.
The industry is moving towards USB-C, while all new Nokia phones don’t support that standard. Why?
Type C in itself does not bring any benefits. You need faster chargers and fundamental different system design on the phone to get the faster data speed and charging. We focused on quality, craftsmanship and improving the real life experience on display and imaging where we see a much bigger benefit for the consumer. We believe that Nokia and our proposition is relevant for everyone at all price points. The three Nokia Android smartphones we have launched recently, is the start of our global expansion. Stay tuned for more news.
With your phones, you talk about delivering a ‘pure Android’ experience. What’s that all about?
By delivering a ‘pure Android’ experience, we mean that we’re delivering the Android in a pure form, with no preinstalls or skins, giving consumers the choice to pick the applications that they want on their smartphone. With monthly security updates your Nokia smartphone is safe and up to date as we as clutter free – putting choice at the heart of the consumer experience. We have committed to a pure Android approach across our entire portfolio, including promoting Google services first to consumers. With monthly security updates your Nokia smartphone is safe and up to date as we as clutter free – putting choice at the heart of the consumer experience. In doing so we are strategically aligned with Android.
Can you tell us a bit more about the new 3310?
The Nokia 3310 is one of the most iconic Nokia phones of all time. By reimagining it we want to show how we’re combining the best of the Nokia legacy with modern design and innovation. The phone runs on the Nokia S30+ platform. This phone delivers unbeatable talk time and standby time and judging by the reaction to it, it’s going to be very popular. The device is meant to be a companion device, delivering extraordinary talk time and standby time simply unachievable with a smartphone.