Nokia and Microsoft, with the Lumia 900, Windows Phone and beyond, could find success by stealing BlackBerry users and Symbian holdouts, according to Forrester.
How can Nokia and Microsoft score the home run they need
with the Nokia Lumia 900, the pairs first flagship smartphone, which AT&T
will begin selling April 8? Convert over all current Symbian users and lure
away BlackBerry users from Research In Motions sinking ship, says Forrester
analyst Sarah Rotman Epps in an April 5 blog post.
The market is ripe for disruptionPalm is dead, Symbian
is sunsetting, RIM is faltering, and every player in the ecosystem (other than
Google and Apple) want a third player to wedge between Google and Apple, wrote
Rotman Epps. Windows Phone, led by Nokia, canand shouldbe the market disruptor,
but doing so requires overcoming two challenges.
The first step is getting the carriers behind Nokia and
Microsoft, she writes, telling an anecdote about a Verizon Wireless salesperson
trying to talk her out of a Windows Phone. Later, she found a T-Mobile store
where the ads were unavoidable.
He who pays the operator sells the phone, she
concludes. Judging from how Nokia has approached promotion at T-Mobile,
Nokias Windows Phones will sell much better than HTCs or Samsungs have.
Challenge No. 2: targeting the right audience, which she
believes Nokia and Microsoft arent yet doing, in going after feature phone
converts. Not only does this mean persuading consumers to take on the cost of a
data plan in a still-soft economy, but also selling them on a platform thats
less popular and all-around-them than iOS or Android.
Instead, said Rotman Epps, they should just steal RIMs
fan base, who are already paying for data.
A more disruptiveand in my view, more achievablegoal
is for Nokia and Microsoft to convert every BlackBerry user to Windows Phone
within two years. BlackBerry users ¦ [have] consciously or unconsciously opted
not to buy into Apple or Googles ecosystems thus far. And RIM itself acknowledges
that it wont have its next-gen products ready anytime soon, argues Rotman
As of the 2011s fourth quarter, RIM had an 8.2 percent
market share, according to IDC; add in the Symbian users, who, with Nokia
gradually stopping support, will have to go somewhere, and that would position
Nokia and Microsoft as a viable third platform and a foil for Google-Apple
Gartner Research Vice President Carolina Milanesi
to eWEEK that Windows Phones are coming to market at an excellent
time. Not only is RIM weak, but with Android vendors showing signs of fatigue
and struggling to differentiate, Nokia and Microsoft could skim from Androids
High-end users might not be willing to switch yet as the
hype around Android remains, but mainstream consumers might, as their loyalty
to Android is very low, said Milanesi. We continue to believe that Android
attracts users as a default because there is nothing else out there today other
Is Windows Phone a strong enough offering to take the No.
I will say it loud and say it proud, she blogged. I
love my Windows Phone.
Michelle Maisto has been covering the enterprise mobility space for a decade, beginning with Knowledge Management, Field Force Automation and eCRM, and most recently as the editor-in-chief of Mobile Enterprise magazine. She earned an MFA in nonfiction writing from Columbia University, and in her spare time obsesses about food. Her first book, The Gastronomy of Marriage, if forthcoming from Random House in September 2009.