Nokia is failing to keep up with rival smartphone manufacturers in the type of chips used in its handsets, and could be harming its market share as a result, according to analysts.
Ovum's Smartphone Capability Tracker for 2009 claimed that Nokia is "lagging behind the performance curve".
"Nokia's current smartphones, including the flagship N97 and N97 mini, run on ARM11 below 500MHz with an anaemic 128MB of RAM, a point that most other platforms have abandoned," said Ovum analyst Tim Renowden.
Most other manufacturers are migrating to ARM Cortex A8 and Qualcomm's Snapdragon chipsets, the analyst explained.
"Both of these platforms include hardware acceleration of graphics and video tasks, enabling richer multimedia experiences such as high-definition video, 3D games and richer graphical user interfaces," he said.
The N900 is the only Nokia handset to use a next-generation chipset, which Renowden described as "surprising" and potentially harmful to the firm's market share.
"A slower processor or poor touch-screen resolution affects users' experiences of devices, and if people go into stores and see products which don't look that impressive they will favour other manufacturers instead," he said.
Renowden added that the launch of Symbian^3 around the middle of the year could see Nokia announce several new products, but that until then the firm is caught between two stools.
"If Nokia announces new products in the coming months it could hurt sales of devices already on the market. However, due to the lack of announcements, people are wondering what the company has in the pipeline," he said.
The Ovum research also noted the growing importance of application stores for handset manufactures and operators.
"Sixty-five per cent of handsets launched in the past 12 months had an app store at launch. Application stores are a must-have feature, and strong growth in preinstalled application stores reflects this," he said.
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