Earlier today the Nokia-branded, and probably almost completely forgotten about, McLaren Windows Phone popped up unexpectedly. It was a quick hands-on report, with some live images of the canceled device, sitting next to the Lumia 1020 it was supposed to replace but never got the chance to. This is a device that first caught attention back in 2014, and now, more than two years later, it’s a relic of a lost time.
Now, Windows Phone doesn’t exist anymore — it’s been replaced by a Windows 10 Mobile. And Nokia is done making Windows Phone/Mobile-based devices altogether, and will actually be focusing on launching Android-based handsets instead. Times, they are a changin’, and the McLaren is nothing but a reminder that, almost, we could have received a true follow-up to the successful and awesome Lumia 1020.
But, it never happened, and won’t ever happen. The McLaren is long dead, including the awesome features Nokia planned on rolling out with it.
The hands-on report did a great job of showing off the main, “killer feature” of the McLaren, called 3D Touch. With it, McLaren owners would have been able to interact with the device without actually touching it. Just hovering a finger over the display and a Live Tile would have made it “explode” and show detailed information. Answering a phone call could be handled just by waving a hand over the display, and muting the speakerphone meant holding your hand over the bottom half of the handset.
The gestures are a cool idea, and it’s not like it would have been impossible. At least, it shouldn’t have been impossible. Samsung has tried its hand at gestures, too, some working better than others, but if anything it at least shows us Nokia should have been able to make it work in the McLaren, and Windows Phone would have had a truly interesting and features-heavy device on the market.
But here we are in a world that never got to experience the McLaren, or whatever Nokia would have ended up calling it for the public, left to look over hands-on photos and read about what it would have been like.
Well, how about you just bring it back to life, Nokia? And I don’t mean simply resurrect it in the way it was and release it, because I don’t think that would get any traction. I mean, update it to make it a truly flagship handset, with the latest and greatest processor, display, and keep a keen focus on the rear (and front!) camera. Bring out the spiritual successor to the great Lumia 1020, but, and here’s the most important part — make it an Android handset.
That last part is obvious, since those are the devices Nokia is working on right now, but I think it would be pretty great if the McLaren could get a breath of life, with updated specifications across the board, and also feature that aforementioned 3D Touch feature. Granted, it’d have to have a different name now, but that’s an easy thing to fix.
I’m already excited to see what Nokia brings to the table with its upcoming flagship Android handset, but I’d be even more excited if I thought the McLaren could get another shot — and the public could get a real opportunity to buy it. Then again, maybe it’s good the McLaren never really saw the light of day, and now Nokia can focus on something wholly new and different.