By Joe Levi | September 27, 2012 11:07 AM
A couple days ago, Adam gave us six reasons why Nokia doesn’t need Android. He makes some very valid points that are hard to disagree with. But what about the other way around? Wouldn’t the Android ecosystem be better off with Nokia bringing all their talents to the table?
1. Hardware is Getting Boring
Android devices these days are more concerned about what’s under the hood than the shape of the chassis or the quality of the paint job. Quad-core and 2GB RAM are certainly noteworthy, but they’ve got to look good at the same time. Can you imagine how well a Lamborghini would sell if they had the same engine inside a Pinto body? I’ll give you a hint: not very well!
Android needs a new player in the game, one who is known for their quality and striking hardware. Nokia is that player. They’ve established themselves as doing just that — and for much longer than Android has been around. Think I’m crazy? I’m not alone with this sentiment. Just look at the HTC 8 family. If you can’t see Nokia’s influence there you probably haven’t looked recently.
2. Software Needs First-Class Competition
On my Android-powered devices I’ve switched to mostly Google’s own apps. I use Play Books for my reading on the go. I use Play Music to stream my music collection. I use Play Movies to buy and stream my movies and new TV shows. When I need to navigate somewhere I usually use Google Navigation. When I need to look something up I use Google Now.
Google Maps and Navigate is a mess. Whenever I look up a location I have to re-learn how I’m supposed to somehow convince my Android that I want it to give me turn-by-turn directions from where I am now to my destination. I doesn’t seem like that difficult of a concept, but somehow Google has managed to complicate it. They could learn quite a bit from Nokia Maps and Nokia Drive.
Without going into that much detail, Play Books and Play Movies could use some polish as well. Nokia’s equivalents seem to be very intuitive and “just work”. Google’s seem more difficult and cumbersome.
Android needs a new player in the apps game to start offering a viable alternative to their apps. Someone with a big name that will get some serious traction. I know there are other apps out there, Waze, Nook, Kindle, and others, but these, too, could benefit from a competitor that put their primary competitor to shame.
3. There Aren’t Enough Pizza’s on the Street
Adam used an analogy that I’d like to turn around and use against him (mwahahaha!) regarding pizza. He makes a good point that you don’t succeed in business by doing the same thing as everyone else. In an already saturated market that’s probably true. I don’t think we’re saturated yet. Not only that, how many pizza shops are out there? I can think of three major chains. Each one sells pizza, but each one is noticeably different. Better ingredients, better recipes, better looking delivery drivers (that last one is untapped, just a hint if you want to get into the pizza business).
Android is the ideal platform for this sort of differentiation. Nokia could not only make a fancy looking device with intuitive apps, they could literally make the device their own. That’s something they can’t do with Windows Phone.
One area that Nokia excels and Android seems to falter has to do with their camera. Some of the best pictures I’ve seen from smartphones have been taken on Nokia devices. Some of the worst that I’ve seen have come from Androids. The camera shouldn’t be overlooked, it should be celebrated! Nokia has done a great job with that and we need someone (ANYONE!) to come in and give us a truly remarkable camera on an Android-powered device.
5. Sheer Numbers
Nokia used to be really popular in the U.S.A. It’s lost that standing over the last several years. In Europe, however, Nokia has stayed strong. Their brand is recognized and respected across the pond. Android needs a European partner that can expedite the adoption of Android in countries where it’s currently “under-performing”.
Android is arguably already well past the half-way point as far as total users go, but we don’t want any isolated areas where Android hasn’t really caught on because people were too stuck in their ways and old loyalties to try something new. A Nokia-branded, Android-powered smartphone would bootstrap adoption of the platform in these areas.
Android doesn’t need Nokia any more than Nokia needs Android. The partnership of the two, in the opinion of this writer, would be useful, mutually beneficial, and gloriously beautiful.
What do you think? What are some other reasons that Android needs Nokia? What features would you expect to see in an Nokia-branded Android? Why would it be better than a similar phone made by another manufacturer? Let us know in the comments!