Nokia chief executive Stephen Elop was in buoyant mood during an earnings call on Thursday, claiming that the firm's Windows Phone handsets will challenge the dominant Android and iOS platforms once Microsoft launches Windows 8.
Nokia chose Windows Phone over rival platforms such as Android because it wanted to differentiate itself from other handset makers on the market, explained Elop.
"Hundreds of millions of people will quite rapidly be exposed to the [live tiles and swiping functionality] interface when 'big' Windows 8 is launched," he told analysts and journalists.
Familiarity with the user experience and the ability for developers to build applications for a broad audience will be essential, Elop explained.
"[It is] pretty significant that people understand how Windows Phone and Windows 8 relate over time," he said.
Another key part of the Nokia and Microsoft deal will see the handset maker bring Windows Phone devices to market at a "substantially lower price" than its competitors.
Andy Lees, president of Microsoft's Windows Phone division, said last week that sub-$200 Windows Phone devices will be available by 2012. Elop backed this up, noting that Nokia will be "very specifically targeting a broad range of price points".
However, things are not looking so good for the Nokia N9 handset. Elop all but confirmed that the MeeGo-based handset will be an experimental device to test new features such as the industrial design, user interface and focus on the Qt development platform.
The N9 is unlikely to get a global launch, and Elop suggested that the handset will be available only in regions where Symbian has been successful.
Francisco Jeronimo, research manager for European mobile devices at IDC, warned that Nokia has its work cut out as Apple is rumoured to be launching a cheaper iPhone in September.
"The [Windows Phone] platform will play an important role in Nokia's results next year and there are strong signs that it can reverse the current situation. First, because Microsoft got the basics right, the Windows Phone user experience," he said.
"Second, Nokia and Microsoft will be strongly supported by mobile operators. The alliance is seen as the strongest to challenge the dominance of Apple and Google. A full range of devices from Nokia, subsidised by operators, will definitely have a positive impact on Nokia results."
Nokia posted a colossal second-quarter loss of €487m after a slump in smarpthone sales, but the firm's shares rose marginally at the start of trading in the US.
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