Nokia is reportedly hoping to strike exclusive deals with Europe-based mobile operators. Specifically, it wants to give carriers exclusive rights to offer its phones that are running on the Windows operating system. In this deal, Nokia and the mobile operator will have to split the costs of marketing the devices in the region.
This strategy is different from what Nokia had been doing in the past. Usually, the Finnish company aimed for more market coverage by allowing all carriers to sell their handsets.
Nokia has confirmed that it is negotiating with carriers, but it declined to give details about this rumor as it prefers to keep private such matters.
Nokia seems to be following Apple’s example. It may be recalled that when the iPhone was launched years ago, the Cupertino company also made the phone available on a selected number of mobile operators, including AT&T and O2. The tactic allowed Apple to ignite interest in the device by limiting the companies that could sell it.
All things considered, exclusive deals do not guarantee success. For example, AT&T became the exclusive provider of the Nokia Lumia 900 that offered Windows 7.5. AT&T started selling the phone last April for $99.99 with a contract. However, it was eventually forced to reduce the price to around fifty percent just three months after it released the phone. Nokia also announced that its number of Lumia phones shipped in 2011 dropped by twenty percent when compared to the figures they got last year.
The Windows Phone is also not very popular in Europe as compared to Android and Apple devices, a situation that is mirrored in other parts of the world. It supposedly holds only 4.1 of the market share in Europe.
Thus, if Nokia does want to pull up its sales, it likely needs some aggressive strategies. Whether the exclusive deals will help them be successful remains to be seen at this point, especially given Nokia’s silence on the details.