Nokia considers laptop launch
The world’s leading mobile phone manufacturer Nokia is considering entering the laptop business, according to its chief executive.
“We are looking very actively at this opportunity,” Chief Executive Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo said, when asked whether Nokia plans to make laptops.
There have been industry rumours about Nokia’s plan to enter the PC industry since late last year, but Kallasvuo’s comment was the first official confirmation.
“We don’t have to look even for five years from now to see that what we know as a cellphone and what we know as a PC are in many ways converging,” Kallasvuo said.
“Today we have hundreds of millions of people who are having their first internet experience on the phone. This is a good indication,” he said.
Nokia’s comments come a week after PC manufacturer Acer launched a foray into the phone business with eight mobile phone models, joining PC market leader HP and Lenovo in the high-growth space.
While strong profit margins in the smartphone industry attract PC brands, the attraction of the low-margin computer industry is less obvious.
“Nokia may be nervous about entering a market segment that is already heavily commoditised, but it would be in a position to exploit its enormous scale in manufacturing, supply chain and distribution,” said Ben Wood, research director at CCS Insight.
“All leading mobile network operators and retailers are adding connected notebooks and netbooks to their portfolios alongside mobile phones. On this basis it comes as no surprise that Nokia is evaluating this segment,” he said.
The global PC industry was resilient for most of last year when other technology sectors were ailing, but it too has now been caught up in the deepening economic downturn that has hit demand from consumers and corporate buyers.