back to article What Surface RT flop? Nokia said to be readying WinRT slab for September

New reports have emerged suggesting that Nokia is planning to boldly go where other device makers fear to tread: the Finnish firm is reportedly planning to release a tablet running Microsoft's ill-fated Windows RT operating system. Murmurs that Nokia is working on a Surface RT competitor have been buzzing around for months now …

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Bronze badge

Yeah I'd Buy One

...for something in the region of 180-200 quid

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appease in our time

There doesn't seem to be any good reason for this product to be brought into existence, except to appease their masters at Microsoft.

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Browny Points for Brown Nosing

Especially as there is a new vacancy in Redmond...

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Re: Browny Points for Brown Nosing

Elop's name has come up as a possible replacement for Ballmer. He was sent on a mission to Microsoft-ize Nokia. He did so, albeit not getting anyplace in the market with it, but his loyalty to MS products is clear. Since Nokia's running out of money, it would not be surprising if MS bought Nokia on the cheap and then promoted Flop to run the whole thing.

Into the ground.

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Anonymous Coward

You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

Whatever Microsoft have on Nokia must be bloody good. NSA quality at least!

Ballmer is going, Microsoft are changing their structure and it's going to be a long time until anything decent fundamental ships regarding Windows RT (if it survives) or Windows Mobile.

Now is the time to bring Nokia's reputation for quality hardware to Android. I think there's a gap in the market for good hardware running stock Android without all the guff that Samsung, HTC and others load onto their devices.

Surely it's INSANE for Nokia to be getting further into bed with Microsoft at this point! At the very least they should now be diversifying in some way. This news just beggars belief.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

"Now is the time to bring Nokia's reputation for quality hardware to Android. I think there's a gap in the market for good hardware running stock Android without all the guff that Samsung, HTC and others load onto their devices."

12 months, even 6 months, ago I'd happily have agreed with you.

With the benefit of a bit more time observing the goings on at Google, I've lost interest in Android.

Such a shame Nokia never got round to doing a proper phone-centric Linux for a phone.

So, S60 3rd edition it is, for me, for a little while longer. But where next, when I don't want to be reliant on anybody's Cloud, because these Clouds need a tinfoil lining.

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Linux

Re: You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

Please enlighten me on the ways the Nokia N9 is not "a proper phone-centric Linux". Apart from being killed by Elop when the press was readying its hallelujahs and never being sold on any "halo" market.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

"Please enlighten me on the ways the Nokia N9 is not "a proper phone-centric Linux"

Please enlighten readers on why it is a proper phone centric Linux (we're not all phone geeks as well as datacentre geeks).

I recognise the N9 name but little beyond that. Having had Nokias since before 3G was invented, I recognise that parts of Nokia were capable of doing great things. Other parts were capable of repeatedly screwing up.

I need my phone primarily as a phone (and snapshot camera) that works reliably, with a few secondary apps (e.g. not including Angry Farts, might include iPlayer Radio if the BBC would kindly permit it, web browser, ideally VNC, the usual best S60 stuff basically - not forgetting decent battery life).

Until someone comes along with a definitely better phone (and for my requirements better does not mean just shinier) then I stick with my antique. My First Android, obtained as a free contract upgrade, was long since rooted but still sits in a cupboard; both as a phone and as a camera it is less satisfactory than the antique.

There must be a better way. Where can I read about the N9, what will its successor be?

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Re: You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

> There must be a better way. Where can I read about the N9, what will its successor be?

http://jolla.com/

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Anonymous Coward

Re: You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

"Now is the time to bring Nokia's reputation for quality hardware to Android"

Then Nokia would loose any differentiation.

Windows Phone is much more secure than Android, and requires less resources - Nokia are already winning corporate business from Blackberry - and low end Windows Phone handsets completely outperform landfill Android....

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Re: You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

>> "Now is the time to bring Nokia's reputation for quality hardware to Android"

>Then Nokia would loose any differentiation.

Exactly, there are already plenty of quality hardware devices running Android, so no differentiation.

> Windows Phone is much more secure than Android, and requires less resources - Nokia are already winning corporate business from Blackberry - and low end Windows Phone handsets completely outperform landfill Android....

WP7 would run on low end hardware, but actually it would _only_ run on low end because its CE base did not support multi-core or multitasking. By tombstoning apps it reduced the processing required, but then users missed out on background tasks that others could run.

WP8 _requires_ dual-core, so these are not 'low-end' and may well 'outperform' single-core Androids that have a lower MHz or less RAM.

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WTF?

Re: You cannot be Sirius maaaaaan

"Now is the time to bring Nokia's reputation for quality hardware to Android"

"Then Nokia would loose any differentiation."

What makes Nokia Lumias different from any other Windows phones IT'S the hardware! GOD, I'm absolutly tired of the Elopism "differentiation"!

"- Nokia are already winning corporate business from Blackberry - and low end Windows Phone handsets completely outperform landfill Android...."

The Toy Phone Brigade™ eating Blackberry's lunch? True, but not by merit, they are offered so, so . so cheap, that the HR departments are flooding them to the poor salespeople...

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Devil

Elop to take over from Ballmer when Microsoft buy Nokia

This is all part of the long term plan. Nokia, Microsoft are one and the same now.

Nokia will launch their RT tablet and become a laughing stock when all the predictions come true, but nobody will remember or care when the entire company is borged into Microsoft in another 12 months time, with Elop running the whole show. One might even wonder if that has been the plan all along...

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Re: Elop to take over from Ballmer when Microsoft buy Nokia

Ruddy hell, I hadn't thought of that. Elop would be the perfect replacement for Ballmer!!

If they want someone to continue the serial cockupery, then Elop is the perfect choice.

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Silver badge

Elop to be left to drown when Ballmer kicked out of Microsoft

Plan A: (Phone selling price) - (Phone manufacturing cost) = (Windows license fee)

For some reason, the phone manufacturers did not want to fall into the same trap as PC manufacturers and did not dive in head first. Selling phones requires the blessing of the carriers. Ballmer bought Skype and said all phones would use Skype to provide revenue to Microsoft instead of call revenue going to the carriers. The carriers rebelled. Ballmer could threaten manufacturers with a cut in marketing donations all he wanted, but that would not generate purchase orders from then carriers.

Plan B: Buy Nokia at bargain basement prices

His Billness looked at the deal around February and said 'No'. Nokia was so badly damaged that the deal made no sense. Ballmer took Microsoft's phone market share form 12% down to 4%. Bill said Windows Phone was 'irretrievably broken'. Ballmer will be running Microsoft with his hands tied behind his back, and Bill will not let him waste more money on Windows Phone.

Plan C: erm ...

Ballmer no longer has to power to bail out Elop any more. Elop has to come up with some plan on his own. The billion a year marketing subsidy depends on Nokia being a Microsoft shop, so Elop has a choice of Winphone, Windows 8.1 and RT. Nokia is not set up to do anything with 8.1 - and the margins are thin there anyway. Winphone support was poor (according to Elop) and will shortly be abysmal. The only advantage I can see to RT is it might make the board offer him money to leave quickly. That plan might not work - Elop fired anyone who disagreed with him. Nokia do not have anyone to replace him.

Microsoft's shares gained 10% when Ballmer announced he was leaving. Ballmer has done a good job of firing any likely successor. The idea of Elop running Microsoft was a joke. Microsoft's shares would drop 50% if they put Elop in charge.

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Re: Elop to take over from Ballmer when Microsoft buy Nokia

I believe this was Elop's plan from the very beginning of his Nokia stint. This is why he was constantly trying to outballmer Ballmer, that is committing the same follies but only more so. The RT tablet is a good example.

This plan may have backfired because Ballmer does not retire in the glory of his achievements. It seems he was pushed by Bill Gates and the rest of the board to allow a change of course. If this is true, Elop would be the last candidate to choose from.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Elop to be left to drown when Ballmer kicked out of Microsoft

"Microsoft's shares would drop 50% if they put Elop in charge."

Who put Ballmer in charge, and left him in charge of the recent reshuffle, anyway?

Elop in charge at MS, shares down 50% or maybe more, what's not to like? Stranger things have happened.

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h3

There will be some half decent games on RT reasonably shortly (XBONE indie dev's will be able to add to it for no effort whatsoever).

I have found on the whole XNA games to be of far higher overall quality than Unity3D ones and I don't expect that to change.

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3G for success?

If Nokia include 3G they could be onto something... I bought a Surface RT after all the price drops and tbh it's not all that bad, the only issue I've had is the reliance on the wifi connection - not always practical in the countryside whereas a 3G signal is more readily available.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: 3G for success?

"If Nokia include 3G they could be onto something"

Apparently they are including 4G.....

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Does Nokia have a plan to make Win RT not suck?

I've not used RT so can not speak from experience, but I've heard very little praise and much condemnation for it. Is there anything salvageable? I can not imagine why Nokia would invest so much time, energy, and reputation trying to put hi-res lipstick on a zombie pig unless they've figured out how to make it work (and work well) for its customers. Sorry if this is a naive and ignorant question.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Does Nokia have a plan to make Win RT not suck?

Short answer, no! Not because they can't but because they are not allowed.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Does Nokia have a plan to make Win RT not suck?

"Is there anything salvageable?"

Well it's certainly a more powerful and secure OS than IOS or Android. It could have a future.

It just needs the apps (although it does come with a full version of Office....)

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Silver badge

Re: Does Nokia have a plan to make Win RT not suck?

> Well it's certainly a more powerful and secure OS than IOS or Android. It could have a future.

In what way is it 'more powerful' ? What exactly does it do that cannot be done on iOS or Android ?

More secure ? Only because no one bothers to attack it yet.

> It just needs the apps (although it does come with a full version of Office....)

It is not a 'full version'. It is a 'student and home' version, and there are many bits missing.

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I thought Elop was a man who could spot a burning platform when he saw one. Guess I was wrong.

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Anonymous Coward

Windows RT is doomed

to suffer the same fate as Zune. Sure, they are both functioning products that perform pretty much as advertised, but the fact is that most people don't want them, and retailers aren't going to waste display space or advertising dollars on items that don't sell.

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Re: Windows RT is doomed

Have you seen the Surface retail displays? They are horrendously ugly and confusing. You can't make enough sense of them to even know what box to pick up to buy your chosen model. You could get an RT, a Pro, a keyboard cover, a lighted cover or god knows what else; it all looks alike.

I'm sure they must have been provided by MS (as opposed to purchased by the store like most retail displays) because they are far too awful for any self respecting retailer to put in their stores.

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Anonymous Coward

Just wait until they are released. When Nokia sells 100 of them, Elop will say, we saw a huge improvement quarter over quarter growth for Windows RT tablets. The fact is, the previous quarter they didn't have a tablet.

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Silver badge

Nokia [...] boldly go where other device makers fear to tread

They got a call from Headquarters, Wa. If you are part of a beeellion dollar cooperation, there are some favors you can call on.

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Windows

Jump you suckers!

Is this the last Monkey Boy edict to M$'s pet phone firm? Full steam ahead and damn the Android torpedoes!

The turd polishing competition is certainly hotting up.

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Thumb Up

Specs not bad...

At least someone caught a clue on why notebooks and cheap tablets aren't selling and upped the screen resolution to a decent level. Now, if it sells for $350, I'd sure take a look.

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Fatal missing specs though

Does not run any apps from either Android or Apple market place.

No commitment from MS to provide long term service.

Anyone who buys an RT because they didn't learn from Zune or Kin and gets left high and dry deverses what they get.

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Re: Specs not bad...

"Now, if it sells for $350, I'd sure take a look."

You think it's going to compete with a Nexus 7 32GBLTE? They still seem to think it's an iPad replacement so expect something more like $700.

Maybe on ebay a few months after the launch when they start giving them away to Microsoft partners.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Specs not bad... Now, if it sells for $350

This idea that manufacturers should sell at a loss to get market share has a flaw. What do you think is the first thing you get taught on an MBA course (no, not how to make a Flaming Ferrari or remove knickers with your teeth)? If you sell at a loss, big sales mean you just go bust faster.

During the life of a product the ASP drops, not increases, so if you start off selling at a loss, where is the plan to make a profit? I don't think Nokia envisage huge volumes: Asus Transformer sized volumes is about what can be expected. And how much does one of those cost? About $600 from Amazon with keyboard.

Either this thing will be as good or better than an iPad and sell for the same money, or it should be scrapped.

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When will they release a daring Bob-phone?

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Coat

Here's a plan....

Here's the plan.

Big Bill appoints Eflop as Ballsupmores replacement.

M$ shares plummet dramatically as Marc Dillon is appointed as Nokia's new CEO. Nokia's shares surge dramatically as they announce new phones running Android and more importantly - Jolla's OS Sailfish - which brings about Nokia's worth overtaking M$, leading to Nokia buying a majority stake M$ and Dillon temporarily taking over control of Redmond.

Marc Dillon issues a memo/email to all M$ staff, talking of "Burning Platforms" - WindowsRT and Windows Phone 8 are immediately dropped, Windows development is turned towards Linux.

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If the price is right, and I am talking £200-£250 then it *might* work, until it is that kinda tempting price it won't. If its not an iPad then it just has to be cheaper until it is well established and has a decent market share which seems to be what they don't understand at the moment. People won't pay a premium for something that does not have the premium brand appeal, deal with it MS.

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Now just put a Bay Trail x86 in and it might even sell well!

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Anonymous Coward

Here i how the call went

Steve to Elop: Hey, Nokia is not going into the toilet fast enough for us to buy it dirt cheap like we planned.

Elop: I know how we can crash the company, we'll i introduce a RT tablet.

Steve: That should do it. I got to go, the board called and want to talk,. I suspect they want to up my bonus.

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Both "Microsoft" and "Windows" brands are burdens.

Despite the majority of the world's PCs running windows doesn't mean people love windows, or microsoft. They put up with it. When they've got non-microsoft-windows choices in tablet area, they'll go for something they don't yet hate.

I wonder what would've happened if Microsoft had called xbox "Microsoft Windows Vista Game machine"...

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Bangs head against wall. Take a look around you Nokia., they aren't selling, nobody likes the winRT slabs, jeesh wake up!

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A lost opportunity

I have a Surface RT tablet an it is actually an excellent device, at least for me.

Some of the reasons it beats the iPad for me are;

Comes with Office and the touch cover makes it a viable productivity tool when out and about.

Has a USB port unlike the iPad. Great for when I want to get pictures off my DSLR camera away from home.

Has expandable memory unlike the iPad.

Has HDMI out unlike the iPad. Handy for use with monitors or playing video on the TV.

Screen is better aspect ratio for viewing films and for productivity.

Can play video wirelessly direct to a smart TV with DLNA. (no need for Apple TV etc)

Can browse the web and read emails as well as the iPad (yes really)

Long battery life.

Kick stand is handy.

I don't care about a million fart aps or games really, although Halo is pretty good on the Surface. Android tablets are the wild west and I just want something that works.

I also have a powerful laptop which has taken over the role of a desktop PC.

Where Microsoft have screwed up was going in at too high a price for an unknown device, and with abysmal marketing. The Surface RT should have been a hit and it's a lost opportunity, but maybe just maybe Nokia can do things a bit better.

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FAIL

The "Recover Losses" plan

With every+1 OEM giving the middle finger to RT (and to Ballmer on the way), only picking the pet puppet was the way to go to recover from the $900 million writeoff. So, it will not be $4 billion at the bank account, or at least on the Nokia's bank account...

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Gold badge

Too bad for Nokia...

It's really too bad Nokia keeps doubling down on Microsoft. I think they make nice hardware, but limiting their phone & tablet options to Windows only really hurt them I think, and now they are continuing on the same path.

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