Stephen Elop: Unveiling the Next Chapter

ALTOUGH many vendors have launched tablets so far Nokia has consistently focused on its mobiles and smart phones. Even during Nokia Connection 2011 Nokia kept concentrating on the launch of its mobiles and smart phones and there was no sign of the release of a tablet. “We are very careful about how we treat our market,” said Nokia president and CEO Stephen Elop at Marina Bay Sands, Singapore on June 21.

According to Elop in many countries including Indonesia tablets are still too elitist. There are only a few brands of tablet that are quite solid while many consumers have not responded to the rest. Nokia itself has opted for other marketing strategies, one of which is to develop affordable mobiles that have added value.  

So far Nokia is still focusing on technology innovation for these devices. In this grand event Elop was present along with his team to show Nokia’s commitment to Nokia’s three pillar strategy: creating smart phones, technology innovation and connecting the next one billion people to the Internet.  

During this occasion Nokia introduced its dual SIM card C2-03 mobile and touch screen smart phone Nokia N9 which is Nokia’s first MeeGo based smart phone. Both will be marketed after July 2011. Nokia also stated its commitment to develop Symbian based smart phones and plans to launch 10 Symbian based devices in the next 12 months.  

The duties of Stephen Elop, who has been CEO at Nokia since Sept. 21, 2010 are indeed not easy. Nokia is known as the market leader in the world and although at top position there is serious pressure from competitors.  

Stephen Elop, born on Dec. 31, 1963, is a Canadian, and the first non Finn to hold such a high position at Nokia replacing Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo. Elop now has quite a difficult task ahead. He is applying a number of management strategies and one of them is for Nokia to focus on a three pronged strategy in order to produce the best products for consumers.  

There are three pillars in the current Nokia’s strategy. First is its strategy that draws much attention, the smart phone strategy. Nokia is collaborating with Microsoft to develop its Windows Phone platform for smart phones and is also collaborating to build a Microsoft-Nokia ecosystem.  

The second strategy is to provide devices for the next one billion people to access the Internet. Nokia views this as its area of responsibility. The third strategy is to prepare technology for the future or disruption technology and one of the technologies is the development of MeeGo, which is a collaboration platform between Intel and Nokia.  

Nokia N9 is one such product that utilizes disruptive technology. This smart phone has an elegant design and it is easy to use as you only have to touch softly. It is wrapped in poly carbonade, which is light, flexible and highly durable. Nokia now seems to be bold in coming up with different materials for casing which used to be stainless steel or plastic.  

After collaborating in Nokia N8 once again Carl Zeiss is taking part in Nokia N9. The resolution is still 8 MP, but the audio has made much progress due to Dolby Digital Plus decoding technology. For music lovers and headset users Dolby Headphone post-processing is available for your enjoyment. Another superior feature of Nokia N9 is Near Field Technology (NFT) as using this technology you just have to tap your mobile for payments, information access and other applications.  

Meanwhile, said Elop, the strategy to reach the next one billion people so that they can access the Internet is via the mobile’s features that are directed toward the lower and middle segment. “We have an integrated strategy to enhance the capacity of our devices at affordable prices so that we can bring the Internet to our new consumers,” explained Elop who received his Bachelor’s Degree in Computer Engineering and Management from McMaster University in Hamilton, Canada.  

As announced by Marko Agenti, senior vice president, developer & marketplace Nokia, the Finland based mobile company will launch the Windows Phone by the end of 2011.  

According to Elop Symbian the present focus is on the company’s smart phones, however when the technology is possible it will most probably be adapted for feature phones. “Earlier this year, we outlined a comprehensive strategy to change our course. Innovation is at the heart of our strategy, and today we took important steps to demonstrate a new pace of innovation at Nokia. It’s the beginning of a new era for Nokia,” said Elop, the father of five and an active pilot. (Burhan Abe)  

The Jakarta Post, July 2, 2011

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