Ahead of the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, analysts were expecting Nokia to perhaps showcase the new version of Microsoft’s Windows Phone operating system, Windows 8, at a price that would match its Chinese competition. The Finnish phone-maker didn’t help its cause by bragging that it would release some “significant industry news” at the event, this week. Instead, Nokia released new additions to its phone portfolio, which, as The Wall Street Journal reports, “failed to inspire.”
Reflecting the disappointment, Nokia shares were down about 5% in late-morning trading on Monday. “We were looking for a cheap Windows phone at $200 on a new version of the software,” Nomura analyst Richard Windsor told WSJ. “We got a phone at $260 on the old software.” What’s more, as WSJ notes: “Being able to offer cheaper Windows Phones is vital for Nokia, as it faces increasing competition from cheap Chinese smartphones running Google Inc.’s Android operating system.”
Already, China manufacturers are selling Android-running smartphones within the range of $100. WSJ added that one of Nokia’s new phones -- the Lumia 610 -- is a step in meeting this challenge, but the handset maker will need to offer even cheaper Windows Phones to success.