Nokia Halting Smartphone Direct Sales
Has all the press Nokia’s been receiving lately got you thinking about foregoing your iPhone or Android and finally checking out a Symbian smartphone? While you can find some Nokia gear with US carriers, so far the go-to place to see what’s available has been to turn to Nokia itself, which maintained an online store selling unlocked smartphones galore. As of now, though, you’ll have to turn to one of its retail partners, since Nokia just shuttered its own online storefront in the US and the UK, following earlier site shutdowns in Europe.
Nokia now directs potential customers to sites like Amazon. Why the change of heart? Nokia had earlier commented on its site closings by explaining that it no longer felt needed as a retailer since there were now so many other places you could turn to to buy its phones, in the form of online discounters. We suppose it has a point, and especially if it’s not offering the best deals available, there’s little point to keeping the site up.
What we hope this is a sign of, would be to start seeing more Nokias in stores and for sale from carriers. The upcoming Windows Phone 7 handsets it’s preparing will undoubtedly get a lot more public interest than its current Symbian models do, which could encourage retailers to start putting Nokia devices front-and-center.
Whatever you do, don’t take this as a sign of failure. Just look at Google’s efforts selling the Nexus One; it ended up deciding that it wasn’t cut out for direct-to-customer sales, but the Nexus line has continued to flourish with the help of Best Buy.