Nokia ad­mits power prob­lems in N8 hand­sets

The Star Malaysia - Star2 - - TECHNOLOGY -

NOKIA Corp said its top N8 model, aimed at mak­ing up lost ground in the smart­phone mar­ket, has had power prob­lems with some hand­sets not turn­ing on af­ter recharg­ing.

The fault is limited to “a small num­ber of hand­sets” and will be fixed in line with Nokia war­ranty rules, Nokia spokesman eija-Ri­itta Huovi­nen said. She gave no de­tails of whether the prob­lem was re­gional or how many hand­sets are af­fected.

“We’ve had a lot of pos­i­tive feed­back about the N8. This prob­lem in­volves re­ally a small num­ber,” Huovi­nen said.

The N8, which looks like Ap­ple Inc’s iphone, fea­tures a 12-megapixel dig­i­tal cam­era with Carl Zeiss op­tics and a 3.5in dis­play. It is built on Sym­bian 3, a new ver­sion of the Sym­bian soft­ware with photo up­load­ing con­nec­tions to so­cial net­works like Face­book and Twit­ter.

Avail­able also in North Amer­ica, Nokia’s worst mar­ket, the N8 is meant to com­pete with the iphone that has set the stan­dard for to­day’s smart­phones and Re­search In Mo­tion ltd’s Black­Ber­rys that are the favourite of the cor­po­rate set.

More re­cently, Google Inc’s An­droid soft­ware has also emerged as a choice for phone mak­ers that want to chal­lenge the iphone.

And the N8 has been be­set with prob­lems. It was un­veiled in April with de­liv­er­ies ex­pected in the sum­mer but Nokia did not start ship­ping it in­ter­na­tion­ally un­til the end of Septem­ber.

The lat­est fault, though rel­a­tively small, comes at a bad time as the fourth quar­ter tra­di­tion­ally means strong growth in the wire­less in­dus­try.

“This doesn’t help the Nokia brand, that’s for sure. The prob­lems have been mount­ing for the past few years and ev­ery lit­tle neg­a­tive head­line adds to that,” said Neil Maw­ston from london-based Strat­egy An­a­lyt­ics. “It’s not a great start for their sup­posed iphone or An­droid killer.”

In Septem­ber, Nokia re­placed its Fin­nish CeO Olli-pekka Kal­lasvuo with Mi­crosoft ex­ec­u­tive Stephen elop, a Cana­dian, the first time the com­pany ap­pointed a non-Finn at its helm.

The choice of a North Amer­i­can ex­ec­u­tive to lead a Fin­nish com­pany was seen as re­flect­ing the in­creas­ing dom­i­nance of US and Cana­dian com­pa­nies in the evo­lu­tion of the top end mo­bile phone busi­ness.

Nokia re­ported a third-quar­ter net profit of 529mil euro (RM2.7bil), up from a net loss of 559mil euro (RM2.8bil) last year, but said it had lost mar­ket share to 30% in the pe­riod — from 34% in 2009.

De­spite set­backs, it is still the global leader in hand­sets, in­clud­ing smart­phones, sell­ing 26.5 mil­lion smart­phones in the quar­ter — up 60% on a year ear­lier. Its clos­est ri­vals, Ap­ple sold 14 mil­lion and RIM 12.5 mil­lion. — Ap ++++

POWER Off: Nokia says that a small num­ber of its N8 phones are not turn­ing on af­ter recharg­ing. - AFP

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