In less than 18 hours from now, Nokia will kick off its 2011 World event. Keynote starts on October 26, 2011 at 9AM UK Time, which translates to your local time according to this table, so make sure to look it up.
So what can you expect from the event? We say the tangible fruit of the Nokia-Microsoft strategic alliance announced back in February. Of course the partnership between the two goes way beyond phones, with ambitions of creating an ecosystem, but it really comes down to what you can hold in the palm of your hand. Many regard this as both Microsoft and Nokia’s last chance to kick back.
So what phones will there be? That’s a question we can’t give you an exact answer to but we can speculate. According to the event Agenda, between 10:45 and 12:00 London time there will be two sessions regarding the latest mobile products. Will it be Windows Phone only? That’s not certain either but chances are good!
Stephen Ballmer was excited about “a bunch” of phones Nokia will unveil at its event. How much is a bunch? Certainly more than one, that’s for sure, and Andy Lees was also referring to “a wide range of Windows Phones” coming out of the Espoo based manufacturer.
What we (think) we know is that there will be a higher-end Windows Phone: the Nokia 800. It’s been initially leaked by Stephen Elop himself and is codenamed SeaRay but that name will most probably not be the one to make it to the market. There were speculation of names like Lumia and Sun tied to the 800’s codename but we’ll have to wait it out.
The Nokia 800 is the Nokia N9’s almost identical brother. That means that the Windows Phone borrows the aspect from the N9, that unibody design that makes the N9 so appealing. Expect a single slab of polycarbonate plastic with probably no way to access the battery. 3.7-inch AMOLED screen with Nokia’s deep black technology and WVGA display. The press renders didn’t show a front-facing webcam so we’re not quite sure what to expect here with almost all the notable wave-two phones having one. The rest of the specs are just speculations but we expect a 1.4GHz processor and 512MB of RAM with (hopefully) the same eight-megapixel camera with Carl Zeiss optics to be found on the N9.
The Nokia Sabre will probably not be the market name for the second phone we’re expecting to be launched. It will get a numbering and a market name but the phone appears to be sport, at least according to rumors, a 1.4GHz processor much like recent wave-two devices, 1GB of RAM (not so credible though), a 3.5-inch WVGA screen, and a five-megapixel camera with probably a front-facing webcam added.
Is that going to be all or will there be more? These two, while definitely enough for a product launch will not satisfy people who are either expecting “a bunch” or “a wide range” of Windows Phones, as Microsoft execs told us. If we remember the codenames, there were quite a few: SeaRay, Sun, Lumia, Ace and Sabre. While four out of the five names above can definitely refer to two devices, there could be something else in the package.
Stephen Elop told the world that, under his CEO-ship, Nokia will try to dramatically reduce the time between a product announcement and an actual market launch. In the light of these, as well as according to rumors of only a Q1 2012 U.S. and other regions’ availability, chances are thin for the manufacturer to show off its complete line-up, including American phones.
On to the non-tangible things: we can see Nokia’s own OVI Store for Windows Phone tomorrow. Also, Nokia bundles its Maps applications for free on phones so we will probably also see Navigation on the devices, probably together with other Nokia stuff bundled.
Since Microsoft is in a strong relationship with Nokia and Skype is now officially part of the Redmond company, would you be surprised to see the new Skype app for Windows Phone being shown off on the Nokia devices? Let us know of your thoughts on what you expect from tomorrow’s Nokia event.