Nokia's PureView Not Coming to North America

Nokia's PureView smartphone, with a 41-megapixel camera sensor, apparently won't make a North American appearance anytime soon.

Nokia is attracting a fair bit of buzz for its PureView smartphone, which features a 41-megapixel camera sensor backed by new recording and image technology.

However, Nokia€™s Website suggests the device won€™t appear in North America, depriving shutterbugs on these shores from being able to take ultra-high-resolution photographs with a Symbian-powered smartphone. (Engadget seems to have noticed the exception first.)

Nokia€™s engineers have shown a willingness to pursue smartphone technology down some particularly funky avenues. A June 2011 article in Businessweek, for example, detailed Nokia CEO Stephen Elop€™s visit to a company lab whose projects included a water-resistant phone (thanks to nanoscale coating) and a hi-fi speaker integrated into a handset. €œThis kind of stuff has been sitting around people€™s desks, because it€™s too hard to get anything done around here,€ he told the magazine. €œIf we can get some of this to market€”that€™s what gives me confidence.€

Clearly, some of that higher-end tech is finding its way into Nokia€™s ecosystem. PureView will supposedly find its way onto Windows Phone, according to a translation of a Nokia executive€™s comments to a Finnish newspaper. But it also won€™t find its way to North America in its current form.

On this side of the Atlantic, Nokia is focused on establishing itself as the preeminent purveyor of Windows Phone devices, having introduced models at high (the Lumia 900), medium (the Lumia 710) and low (Lumia 610) price points.

New data from research firm Strategy Analytics suggests that Nokia has become the world€™s largest Windows Phone vendor, at 33 percent of the market, surpassing the individual efforts of HTC and other manufacturers. The company announced it had sold one million Windows Phone units in the fourth quarter of 2011, surpassing some analyst expectations.

Microsoft is prepping a Windows Phone 8 that will support multi-core processors and native BitLocker encryption, and integrate in many ways with the upcoming Windows 8, according to February reports on and Supersite for Windows. That could help Windows Phone€™s overall fortunes; in the year-plus since Microsoft and its manufacturing partners began rolling out devices, the company€™s overall share of the smartphone market has refused to budge.

Nokia knows it will take much more than a 41-megapixel camera grafted onto a smartphone to reestablish itself against aggressive competitors, such as Google Android and Apple€™s iPhone. But the company can still attract some buzz by showing what it can do€”at least for potential customers outside North America.

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