I think Nokia and Android are better off without each otherAnna Scantlin - Contributing Editor
Among other popular subjects in the mobile industry today, one discussion I’ve been coming across more frequently lately is the push for Nokia to team up with Android. I have to admit that I’ve entertained the notion myself a couple of times, especially considering all of the good things that Nokia has done for Windows Phone; but after taking it into considering a little further, I’d have to say that I don’t think that Nokia and Android are that great for each other after all.
I see Nokia as a saving grace for Windows Phone. If it wasn’t for Nokia’s PureView technology being implemented into the latest Lumia phones, a lot of people wouldn’t be able to overlook the blatant lack of applications available in the market compared to other platforms like iOS and Android. Although Microsoft is doing a decent job at supplying mainstream applications to their platform like Spotify, Netflix, and Instagram, there’s considerably less freedom to move around for alternatives if a user so chooses to seek them out. However, I think we can all agree that while applications play the main part in why anybody would want a smartphone in the first place, having the most applications is not always a necessity for everyone.
But just because it's not a necessity for some doesn't mean it's not a desired by others. Why shouldn't a phone be able to have all of these things? Why shouldn't the fabulous PureView technology in the Nokia cameras be combined with the freedom and overall ecosystem of Android? Some might even say it would make the perfect phone. To be perfectly honest, I think that a Nokia Android device would be awesome as ever, but only in theory. I have a bad feeling that if those two were to combine, Windows Phone would struggle to stay afloat. Nokia is really the only thing making Windows Phone so popular right now. You never hear about how great the Samsung Windows Phones are (because compared to Nokia, they're not), and the HTC 8X has long escaped our minds in favor of the newer HTC One that's running on Android. The biggest news to come from anything Windows Phone related is when the next Lumia will be released.
There are certain things that I associate with each platform that makes them stick out to me: iOS equals stability, BlackBerry equals business, Android equals freedom, and Windows Phone equals Nokia. I say 'Nokia' instead of 'camera' because I also think that Nokia brings a lot more to the table for Windows Phone and Microsoft than just a camera. They make quality hardware out of cheaper materials, for one. Forget the fact that the Lumia 920 is a thick device - it's also a tank that can take a beating. Nokia also provides a good stock GPS system that works offline just as well as it does online, something that even Google Maps doesn't even do right out of the box. Nokia can actually use Windows Phone as an advantage to shine with these elements, as oppose to Android which has a lot more to deal with overall in terms of features, hardware, and specs.
But that's just dealing with one side of the spectrum. While I think that Windows Phone would struggle immensely without Nokia, I also think that Nokia would struggle in the Android market as well. The Android market is already oversaturated - you have tons of manufacturers to choose from when it comes to Android already. Although Nokia is no stranger to the mobile world and could definitely sell something, I fear that it would be overshadowed by Samsung. Even known names to the Android game like HTC and Motorola are struggling to keep up with the overwhelming power that Samsung has over the Android kingdom. It would take a lot of money and advertising to kick Samsung off of its throne, something that Nokia wouldn't be able to compete with at this point in time.
I think Nokia works well with Windows Phone because Windows Phone is a minimal, simple platform. Even the lower end Nokia devices work very smoothly running Windows Phone, but if you were to throw a low-end Nokia phone into the Android market, odds are it won't fare nearly as well. If Nokia were to try and make a name for themselves in the Android market, they would have to top Samsung in a lot of areas that they wouldn't be able to. At this point in time, I feel like Nokia would only be opting in for a losing battle, even if a Nokia running on Android could potentially be an awesome experience. Simply put, I think Windows Phone needs Nokia as much as Nokia needs Windows Phone.
But that's just my take on things. Now it's your turn, readers. What would you think of Nokia started producing Android devices? Do you think they would succeed, or do you think that the oversaturated Android market would overpower any chance Nokia had? Let me know your thoughts in the comments below!