Wednesday, February 09, 2011

Nokia's Burning Platform

Nokia is expected to bring some radical changes to revive the fortunes of the company, says new CEO Stephen Elop in a memo to all his employees. The memo says, "The company's situation is that of a man standing on an oil platform in the North Sea and facing a raging fire on multiple fronts - who has no choice but to jump into freezing water to survive."
  • "...there is intense heat coming from our competitors, more rapidly than we ever expected. Apple disrupted the market by redefining the smartphone and attracting developers to a closed, but very powerful ecosystem."
  • "They changed the game, and today, Apple owns the high-end range."
  • "Google has become a gravitational force, drawing much of the industry's innovation to its core."
  • "We have some brilliant sources of innovation inside Nokia, but we are not bringing it to market fast enough. We thought MeeGo would be a platform for winning high-end smartphones. However, at this rate, by the end of 2011, we might have only one MeeGo product in the market."
  • "...Symbian is proving to be an increasingly difficult environment in which to develop to meet the continuously expanding consumer requirements..."
  • "Our competitors aren't taking our market share with devices; they are taking our market share with an entire ecosystem."
  • "We poured gasoline on our own burning platform. I believe we have lacked accountability and leadership to align and direct the company through these disruptive times. We had a series of misses. We haven't been delivering innovation fast enough. We're not collaborating internally. Nokia, our platform is burning."
Nokia has become just another handset manufacturer from being the world leader especially in the Smart Phone category which is now being dominated by Android and Apple. Well, I was wondering what is W+K doing with the Nokia account? Couple of months back, I met someone from W+K Amsterdam office who works on the Nokia account and uses an iPhone. When I asked him why not the N5, he was utterly embarrassed. I guess, that's why I didn't get the job. Anyways.

Nokia needs a miracle to survive the onslaught launched by Apple IOS and Google's Android. God save them. This is a perfect example of how a market leader is reduced to nothing when they lose focus on competition. Apple and Google on the other hand has managed to create strong eco-system around themselves. Brands that manage to build stronger eco-systems around their core offerings will not only be successful but drive consumers along with them in the future.

More on Brand Eco-system coming soon. Cheers.

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