Linked by Hadrien Grasland on Wed 9th Feb 2011 18:24 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless Here's some very interesting analysis of why dropping Symbian or MeeGo for Android or Windows Phone 7 would be the closest thing to brand suicide which Nokia could do now.
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Nice blog.
by Neolander on Wed 9th Feb 2011 18:34 UTC
Neolander
Member since:
2010-03-08

Discovered it today in the memo article's comments, and I must admit that if I had more time, I'd love to spend that time reading it. The author has some good sense of argumentation, and his articles (at least those about Nokia, didn't read the others yet) are a pleasure to read.

EDIT: Too much "haha"s though.

Edited 2011-02-09 18:47 UTC

Reply Score: 1

RE: Nice blog.
by bitwelder on Thu 10th Feb 2011 09:47 UTC in reply to "Nice blog."
bitwelder Member since:
2010-04-27

I agree on the 'too much haha'.
Also more often than not, his posts require quite some time *with fresh mind* to be read carefully.

Reply Score: 1

Excellent article ...
by gnemmi on Wed 9th Feb 2011 18:57 UTC
gnemmi
Member since:
2006-08-17

and he _really_ has a point ... long term market "dominance".

Now the only "burning" thing seems to be Elop´s ass, as stock holders, boards and balances don´t evaluate long term runs ...

Reply Score: 3

stopped reading it
by orsg on Wed 9th Feb 2011 19:23 UTC
orsg
Member since:
2011-02-09

I actually stopped reading after he compared Nokia to Ford with the argument "Ford cannot afford to focus on sports cars, too"
what a ridiculus argument, did he ever have a look at the history of cars? For the last 40 years or so, a car can be defined as "a thing with 4 wheels, 3 pedals, and a steering wheel, where you can fill in some liquid and it runs about 100km/h". of course cars got a lot safer, more comfortable, more environment-friendly and probably got a little faster over time.
Now compare that to phones, due to technological advances, phones changed more over the last half decade than cars did over the last half century. Just 5 years ago, a mobile phone was a thing with a small display and a T9 keyboard, which could do calls, SMS and some MMS and stuff, which nobody really used anyway. Now large touchscreen devices with finger optimized UI and 1GHz CPUs sell like crazy.
To the order of magnitude, that cars got faster over the last 40 years, phones get faster hardware every single year, so how can he proclaim something like "it is not feasable for everyone to have a highend device"? I'm not talking of something like 2020, I actually think, there is no reason one would buy a not-so-smart phone 3 years from now except some very small nices (rugged phones, senior optimized phones, ...)

EDIT: or did he want to express, that nokia phones changed as little as Ford cars over the last decade? ;-)

Edited 2011-02-09 19:34 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE: stopped reading it
by g2devi on Wed 9th Feb 2011 20:03 UTC in reply to "stopped reading it"
g2devi Member since:
2005-07-09

The main problem with Nokia (with Maemo) is the same problem OLPC folks face (and Borland faced with OWL back when they owned C++ on Windows development), namely credibility. Both announced their platform with defiant optimism. Both got a huge following. Both abandonned them. Anything produced after that is met with scepticism because the early adopters were left as orphans without even a migration path to the new platform. Meanwhile, the market moved on. Nokia added insult to injury by abandoning its old Symbian OS. Why should any developer or consumer trust Nokia again considering that there are safer and more credible competitors out there? How is Meego better than AndroidOS? It's not enough to be marginally better, AndroidOS has to be blown out of the water before it would be worth consumers and developer to accept the risk of being orphaned. An example of this would be, if Meego devices could give you everything AndroidOS did at a third of the price (since it needed to run on less powerful hardware). Another example would be being able to run both iOS and Android apps and Symbian apps and other types of apps at the same time at about the same price-point as Android or iOS devices.

BTW, seniors devices will likely be touch screens too since context sensitive buttons are much more intuitive than buttons that persist whether or not they are useful in the current context.

Edited 2011-02-09 20:05 UTC

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: stopped reading it
by ricegf on Wed 9th Feb 2011 21:46 UTC in reply to "RE: stopped reading it"
ricegf Member since:
2007-04-25

As an N900 owner for the past year and iPad owner for a couple of months, I'm quite puzzled by your post.

How was I "abandoned" on the N900, exactly? How was I "left as orphans without even a migration path to the new platform"?

S60, Symbian^3 and MeeGo are programmed using Qt 2.6; well, darned if Qt 2.6 can't (now) be used to program Maemo as well. And the repository certainly has a fairly wide selection of Qt apps for my N900 today - more than I can work through, actually, which makes it effectively rather similar to my iPad (though the app store's UI is certainly more fun to browse - except for the prices ;-).

And I presume that you already know that the N900 can run the Dalvik engine by purchasing Alien (a commercial, supported product by Myriad), so that it runs Android apps. Oh, great - MORE apps to sort through!

And what's the first two platforms simultaneously supported by Firefox 4 Mobile? Hmmm...

So, I don't understand why you think I should feel abandoned or orphaned. My darned N900 tablet/phone has been a joy to use for the past year, and it still compares favorably to my iPad.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: stopped reading it
by jabbotts on Fri 11th Feb 2011 16:41 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: stopped reading it"
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

One N900 user to another..

- how long will I continue to see updates in the maemo repositories?
- what are the chances of new apps being added?
- what amount of contribution will Nokia keep in Meego?
- after watching Nokia stuff Maemo in favor of Meego, what reason does one have to trust in future development promises?
- when my N900 does fall over, what open standard distro based options will I have to upgrade too? Will there even be a device that can be truly considered an upgrade?

There is just not another option available at this time and may very well not be in future given the three most likely prospects. I may be looking at going back to a dumbphone and PDA combination just so I don't take a functionality downgrade.

Reply Score: 2

RE: stopped reading it
by vodoomoth on Thu 10th Feb 2011 10:08 UTC in reply to "stopped reading it"
vodoomoth Member since:
2010-03-30

I urge you to return to the article and continue reading it. You cannot stop at yet another car analogy that you didn't like, you'd be missing out on something that is worthwhile, a link for all the figures is even included at the end of the blog post.

Reply Score: 3

Wrong in the long run ...
by -pekr- on Wed 9th Feb 2011 20:00 UTC
-pekr-
Member since:
2006-03-28

This guy seems to be wrong in the long run. Every sany person should realise Symbian is relic of the past. He is right there is still a need for dumb phones, but - the time will come, when HW for such a dumb phones is powerfull enough to run for e.g. Android. Then you can make the UI dumb, but still underneath, you can use just one infrastructure.

The MeeGo is DOA (Dead on Arrival) imo. Not sure it will win any significant position. And even for Nokia, it is a problem, if you will not be able to share apps between Symbian and MeeGo. MS abandoned WinMobile 6.x too, but MS is offering its OS to other partners, who further push it on their HW. But how many chances are there for Nokia-only + MeeGo? How many of other HW parteners will be interested to launch a MeeGo based smartphone?

Nokia is still dominant. It is dominant via the market-share, but not dominant in ppl's mind. There is transition ongoing towards modern touch-based devices, and if Nokia does not wake-up soon enough, it'll start to die off sooner or later, of course - IMO ...

Reply Score: 3

RE: Wrong in the long run ...
by shmerl on Wed 9th Feb 2011 21:19 UTC in reply to "Wrong in the long run ..."
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

In what sense Meego is DOA? It's better than Android from technical perspective, and way better than iOS because it's open. In reality Meego is the only path for Nokia to succeed.

Reply Score: 3

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Why is Meego better than Android from a technical perspective?

Its easy to just state one's own preference and imply that its globally true for everyone, but that usually isn't the case. Mobile phone buyers really only care about the features ( including app availability), performance and carrier availability of the phone. If Meego is to succeed ( and I really do want it to), its going to have to win on those merits.

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Wrong in the long run ...
by shmerl on Wed 9th Feb 2011 22:21 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Wrong in the long run ..."
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

Simple - it gives broader choice for developers, and thus it's better. Android's model is more limited by default. It's not just preference - it's how these systems are designed.

Reply Score: 1

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

You have a very narrow definition of "technical perspective".


By that definition a phone running redhat linux 1.0 with a command line interface, lynx as a web browser and only gprs data access would be better than android, from a "technical perspective".

Reply Score: 4

RE[5]: Wrong in the long run ...
by shmerl on Wed 9th Feb 2011 22:53 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Wrong in the long run ..."
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

I personally don't mind having terminal, lynx (can Android easily run it?), midnight commander and all other console goodies, but why RH 1.0? Meego has modern kernel and UI.

What I meant is, that since Meego is an normal Linux it can easily run VMs for Java (including Dalvik too), Ruby, Python and etc. All this in addition to native code. Can you run normal Java (not Dalvik) on Android?

Edited 2011-02-09 22:53 UTC

Reply Score: 2

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Ah, so things like performance and ui should be considered when considering things from a"technical perspective"? Well, then its not quite so clear cut anymore. Which UI you prefer and how much that matters are going to vary from person to person.

What I meant is, that since Meego is an normal Linux it can easily run VMs for Java (including Dalvik too), Ruby, Python and etc. All this in addition to native code. Can you run normal Java (not Dalvik) on Android?



Android can run some Ruby, Python etc through the Android Scripting Environment. Pure Java? Maybe. Not sure. There is now a native development environment for Android where you can code in c without going through Dalvik. You could port the OpenJDK to it, as well as any of the full versions of any scripting language. Android is also open source ( in the same way that any BSD is ), which means that you really do have a lot of freedom with the code. The real challenge with Android can be getting that code to work on your particular phone. Or visa versa getting the code to the particular OS ( with Device Manufacturer tweeks ) that's running on your phone.

I guess what I've been trying to say is that there are other things that I woudl consider Android does better from a technical perspective that you haven't even addressed. Like the fact that most app development is done in a virtual machine, which should prevent the kinds of issues (buffer overflows, null pointer errors,ect ) that apps written in pure c can. This comes at a cost in speed, but at the benefit of additional security, stability and ease of development.

Reply Score: 2

RE[7]: Wrong in the long run ...
by shmerl on Wed 9th Feb 2011 23:24 UTC in reply to "RE[6]: Wrong in the long run ..."
shmerl Member since:
2010-06-08

As I said, Meego just gives a bigger *choice*. Android's NDK is a good step forward, but Meego is still more flexible in a way development can be done there.

Reply Score: 1

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

"Android can run some Ruby, Python etc through the Android Scripting Environment."

And Maemo/Meego can run Ruby code through Ruby and Python through Python not a one-off scripting environment.

Having a real distro under the hood is a big selling point and makes a differences; even for the folks who aren't devs. I'm sure not coding from scartch but what I do with the N900 can't yet be replicated with available apps on another phone platform.

Reply Score: 2

RE[6]: Wrong in the long run ...
by jabbotts on Fri 11th Feb 2011 16:44 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Wrong in the long run ..."
jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

Don't forget sane layout under the hood. I'm told Android is less than a standard distro layout once you get below the GUI display.

Reply Score: 2

RE[4]: Wrong in the long run ...
by _txf_ on Wed 9th Feb 2011 23:19 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Wrong in the long run ..."
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

And to add that it could encourage a greater developer ecosystem within Meego itself. Android gets seriously irritating with random code dumps every release, Meego uses a proper open source development methodology. For end users it probably makes little difference, but outside contributors can accelerate development of features that inhouse developers do not have time to tackle, the end result being more features and fewer bugs. The code dump is one of the reasons Android in devices lags Android code releases so severely.

Google does not accept patches to its applications or to android (even when they are major improvements) and the linux kernel in android is also got some heavy modifications that are not going upstream because upstream does not accept many of the changes google has made; I don't know which side is more technically correct, but Meego uses the sources and contributes directly upstream in all its components.

Reply Score: 3

jabbotts Member since:
2007-09-06

It also makes a difference for end users. I get a steady flow of Maemo updates since it sent to a proper rolling distro schedual. I also get updates promptly for both apps an core OS without having to buy a new phone each time the vendor repackages a new Android release version.

The end user may not be aware that they benefit, but they do.

Reply Score: 2

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

Consumers don't care about developer advantages.

MeeGo to consumers would look like Android but without the software library.

Reply Score: 2

puelocesar Member since:
2008-10-30

Just to troll a little, most Android apps are crap anyway ;)

edit: it's a joke ok? Not starting a flaming war...

Edited 2011-02-10 00:45 UTC

Reply Score: 1

No it isnt Member since:
2005-11-14

But it's true. And not only crap, but most mobile apps are extremely simple, and duplicates as well. You don't need 350 flashlight apps, and making one for the MeeGo platform shouldn't take days.

Then you have a huge library of Qt apps to take code from, if you want to do open source.

Reply Score: 2

puelocesar Member since:
2008-10-30

I don't know you guys, but I prefer 1000x to work on Qt QML, Ruby, Python, and other nice stuff then that fuckin Java that Android forces into it's developers..

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Wrong in the long run ...
by _xmv on Thu 10th Feb 2011 11:09 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Wrong in the long run ..."
_xmv Member since:
2008-12-09

Why is Meego better than Android from a technical perspective?


Better is relative, however, Meego behaves more like a traditional OS, which is much more complete than Android.

Running non-android (read java bytecode) on Android is rather annoying.
Beside Android uses a weird security model (uids per app, modified kernel capabilities) AND the way it works is by.. forking new java VM's.

That's hackish at best. It works - that's fine.

But from my point of view I'd rather use Meego with a traditional model, as a poweruser/developer/etc that is. Non-traditional does not always mean "innovative and better".

Besides, Android does not have hardware accelerated UI.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Wrong in the long run ...
by phoenix on Fri 11th Feb 2011 23:58 UTC in reply to "RE: Wrong in the long run ..."
phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

In what sense Meego is DOA?


Number of Meego devices shipped to consumers last year?

Number of Meego devices currently available for purchase?

Number of Meego devices expected to launch this year?

I can count all of the above on my hands, and still have a hand left over.

Sounds DoA to me.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Wrong in the long run ...
by puelocesar on Wed 9th Feb 2011 22:56 UTC in reply to "Wrong in the long run ..."
puelocesar Member since:
2008-10-30

Except for the fact that mostly nerds want feature phones. Some people just want to make calls. No need of Safari for that.

Just look at this amazing concept from the Copenhagen Institute of Interaction Design:

http://vimeo.com/5592233

Reply Score: 3

RE: Wrong in the long run ...
by dsmogor on Thu 10th Feb 2011 14:01 UTC in reply to "Wrong in the long run ..."
dsmogor Member since:
2005-09-01

Nokia still sells more smartphones that two its bigges competitors combined, so sure it's capable of pulling something off alone as much as Apple and Samsung have demonstrated they are.

The only question is whether they could make Meego compelling enough. Making it able to run Android apps (definately technically possible) wouldn't hurt and in market of app producers used to supporting minor platform variations would work given enough handsets initially shipped.

Also note that Meego is potentially much better platform for native apps than Android (for which native support is limited and an afterthought).

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Wrong in the long run ...
by _txf_ on Thu 10th Feb 2011 14:35 UTC in reply to "RE: Wrong in the long run ..."
_txf_ Member since:
2008-03-17

It also should be noted that fullscreen games can run on meego and webos with very little/no modification due to the use of proper libc and sdl.

Reply Score: 2

Windows Mobile outsold WP7
by nt_jerkface on Thu 10th Feb 2011 00:50 UTC
nt_jerkface
Member since:
2009-08-26

so that must mean MS should not have abandoned Windows Mobile.

The PS2 also outsold the PS3 for years. Maybe Sony should have never abandoned the PS2.

Symbian is selling now but that says nothing about its long term viability. MeeGo phones were supposed to be out last year and the CEO doesn't seem to have faith in it.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Windows Mobile outsold WP7
by vodoomoth on Thu 10th Feb 2011 10:11 UTC in reply to "Windows Mobile outsold WP7"
vodoomoth Member since:
2010-03-30

so that must mean MS should not have abandoned Windows Mobile.

The PS2 also outsold the PS3 for years. Maybe Sony should have never abandoned the PS2.

Symbian is selling now but that says nothing about its long term viability. MeeGo phones were supposed to be out last year and the CEO doesn't seem to have faith in it.

I'm not sure we both read the same text; I'm not even sure I get what you are conveying. He (she?) didn't say Symbian should never be abandoned, he clearly stated that Nokia's goal should be/is to migrate the hundreds of millions of people running Symbian on dumbphones to Meego on smartphones. And he said that given Nokia's market share on both segments, there's no evidence that they are failing at reaching that goal.

The way I understood the post, the whole point of it is to debunk the idea that Nokia should jump ships to a "rival OS" as there's no figures or trends that support that idea.

Reply Score: 4

nt_jerkface Member since:
2009-08-26

He didn't say Symbian should never be abandoned


No but he said it shouldn't be abandoned based on sales compared to WP7. You don't base a plan on a single quarter of sales with a new product in a highly competitive and rapidly changing market.

he clearly stated that Nokia's goal should be/is to migrate the hundreds of millions of people running Symbian on dumbphones to Meego on smartphones.


Move them when? Android is eating their market and the Nokia CEO said they would not be able to get more than one phone out this year. MeeGo is also not looking like a competitive OS. The CEO doesn't have any faith in it and those millions on dumbphone owners can just as easily move to Android.

And he said that given Nokia's market share on both segments, there's no evidence that they are failing at reaching that goal.


It's 2011 and they still don't have a single MeeGo phone out.

The way I understood the post, the whole point of it is to debunk the idea that Nokia should jump ships to a "rival OS" as there's no figures or trends that support that idea.


The trend is that Android is eating their market and they have nothing to counter it with. By partnering with WP7 and taking a cut of the commissions they can make more money than they would with MeeGo.

Reply Score: 2

Excellent reading
by vodoomoth on Thu 10th Feb 2011 10:15 UTC
vodoomoth
Member since:
2010-03-30

Thanks for posting this item. It was time well spent despite some reasoning shortcuts being debatable.
However, I wondered what was the author's problem with "haha"? Does it mean something specific in English?

Reply Score: 2

Aarggh
by Paradroid on Thu 10th Feb 2011 10:22 UTC
Paradroid
Member since:
2010-01-05

He says it's not going to be a long post but it sure is and I couldn't cope with the writing style.

The comments on this page are far better informed that that blog. "Wrong in the long run ..." on the first page sums it up perfectly for me.

Reply Score: 1

Comment by MamiyaOtaru
by MamiyaOtaru on Fri 11th Feb 2011 09:18 UTC
MamiyaOtaru
Member since:
2005-11-11

By the way, that means obviously that Nokia would be utterly foolish now to abandon Symbian in favor of Phone 7 haha.

welp

Reply Score: 2