Nokia's Mobile Market Swoon: 10 Ways to Fix It

By Don Reisinger  |  Posted 2012-04-19 Print this article Print

NEWS ANALYSIS: Nokia is in deep trouble. The company has watched device shipments plummet, profits evaporate and its position in the marketplace falter. Can anything save the company?

Could the bad news come any faster at Nokia? The company announced recently that due to tough competition in the mobile space, sales plummeted during the first quarter, resulting in the worst three-month results the company has every reported. During the quarter, Nokia lost $1.2 billion, and shareholders, shocked by the steep decline in earnings, sold off the company's stock.

As one might expect, the tough quarter and Nokia's acknowledgement that something drastic needs to be done fast to address its many problems are causing most to believe that nothing can fix the once-dominant mobile firm. At this point, the naysayers argue that with Apple and Google Android devouring its market share, all Nokia can do is accept its fate as a dying mobile company.

But perhaps it's not time for Nokia to wave the white flag just yet. Sure, it's facing serious trouble and the chances of it turning things around are slim, but there's still hope if the company can follow the right strategy.

Read on to find out some of the things Nokia should do to fix its ailing operation.

1. A quick sale to Microsoft

The first thing Nokia should consider is selling itself to Microsoft. The software giant is looking to exercise some control over a major vendor, and what better company to do it with than Nokia? What's more, Nokia has several highly valuable patents Microsoft might like. At this point, it's either sell off Nokia to Microsoft or face the very real possibility of closing the doors.

2. Changes at the top

Although Nokia brought on Stephen Elop with the hope that he would change the corporate culture and turn things around, he hasn't been able to do that. Considering Nokia is on the downward spiral, the company's board should fire Elop and find a replacement with radical ideas. At this point, it might be the only thing that can save Nokia.

3. Focus on international markets

When will Nokia finally admit that it can't win North America and Western Europe and focus its efforts on international, emerging markets? Those are the areas that most likely need Symbian devices and other lower-cost Nokia offerings. That could very well become part of an overall strategy that gives the company a chance to recover.

4. Remember pricing

Although Nokia's Lumia line hasn't been very successful, the company's Lumia 900 has done relatively well by delivering high-quality features and a $99 price tag. Maybe there's something to that. At this point, price-to-value is a huge consideration among consumers and enterprise users. Without that right balance, Nokia won't be successful. The Lumia 900 might just be the template Nokia should use for all future launches.

Don Reisinger is a freelance technology columnist. He started writing about technology for Ziff-Davis' Since then, he has written extremely popular columns for, Computerworld, InformationWeek, and others. He has appeared numerous times on national television to share his expertise with viewers. You can follow his every move at

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