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Will Consumers Switch OS to get a Nokia Lumia Windows Phone 8?

by Paul Brown | Sep 05, 2012

Nokia launched their new Windows Phone 8 devices today - the Lumia 920 and Lumia 820. During the event, Nokia and Windows Phone fans took to social media, encouraging consumers to embrace the new experiences delivered by these offerings by tweeting the hashtag #switchtolumia

The devices, which feature a number of incremental enhancements from previous models, have raised the bar in the extremely competitive smartphone market. Nokia has successfully differentiated with its hardware. The design of the previous Lumia models has received a lot of praise, and a range of colors will certainly help Nokia stand out from the crowd. Wireless charging will help to differentiate Nokia devices (for the time being), and it has made great advancements with its imaging technology and software - object remover and Cinemegraph in particular are cool. Location services also featured prominently, with the augmented reality of Nokia City Lens another great feature.

Nokia Lumia 920

Nokia Lumia 920 (Source: press.nokia.com)

However, are these hardware and software features compelling enough to convince consumers to switch operating systems or are Nokia left to fight with Apple and Android for new smartphone buyers? Previous Strategy Analytics research has found that most consumers are hesitant to switch OS due to:

  • Concerns about having to learn a new, unfamiliar OS;
  • Potential to lose data or content currently saved or downloaded to their device, and importantly;
  • Lack of availability of the long tail of apps that individual consumers are particularly attached to.

With new announcements to come from Apple and Motorola/Google this month, do these new offerings from Nokia and Microsoft offer sufficiently compelling innovations to convince consumers to switch to a new operating system? While some of the enhancements -especially wireless charging - are currently not supported by competing platforms, we are unconvinced that incremental innovations, such as the ability to use the touchscreen while wearing gloves, are sufficient to provide those consumers who purchase high-end devices (who tend to be the most platform-loyal) with a compelling reason to switch.

See the first impressions of the Nokia Lumia 920 from my Wireless Smartphone Strategies colleagues here - Nokia Microsoft Lumia 920 WP8 Smartphone: Our First Impressions

- Paul Brown

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