Anyone purchasing a Nokia smartphone this summer shouldn’t be surprised to find not a trace of Ovi services brand. In an effort to “reinforce the powerful master brand of Nokia” and “unify” its brand architecture, all Ovi services are being rebranded as Nokia services.
The transition will begin in July, and Nokia hopes to see it completed across all countries and all services by year’s end, Jerri DeVard, Nokia’s executive vice president and CMO, said in a May 16 statement. New phones will arrive sans Ovi branding, and current Nokia owners will eventually see the branding phased out through software updates.
“The reasons for this decision includes the fact that Nokia is a well-known and highly loved brand the world over. Our mobile experiences are tightly integrated with our devices-there is no longer a differentiation,” DeVard said. “These last few years, and moving forward, our mission remains unchanged: we will continue our work to deliver compelling, unified mobile service offerings and next-generation, disruptive technologies.”
The greatest change to the Nokia brand, however, since Stephen Elop left Microsoft to take on the CEO role at the mobile phone vendor in September 2010, has been the redirection of its operating system priorities from Symbian to Microsoft. In February, Elop warned that it would require some previously unthinkable measures to save the company, which for a number of quarters has lost market share to the Apple iPhone and Android-running smartphones. Days later Elop, with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer, announced the new deal, which will bring Windows Phone-running Nokia smartphones to market by 2012.