Nokia chairman Ollila to step down
Nokia chairman Jorma Ollila has sparked rumors of sweeping managerial changes at the firm, announcing he will leave the firm in 2012.
Ollila’s announcement comes hot on the heels of the appointment of Nokia’s first non-Finnish CEO Stephen Elop, and just a day after the firm’s smartphone chief, Anssi Vanjoki, resigned.
The timing signals that firm could make sharper changes to its structure and focus than expected, WSJ suggested.
During Ollila’s 14 years as CEO and chairman Nokia became the world’s most successful phone maker, but the board appears to have decided that his continued presence would overshadow Elop as he attempts to revamp its business.
Hints about the new direction the firm is heading were given at the Nokia World event in London yesterday, where Nokia unveiled three new smartphones and made a play to win over apps developers.
Niklas Savander, executive vice president of markets, said the new devices were part of Nokia’s “fight back to smartphone leadership.” He said he was proud not to be Apple or Google, stating that Nokia was “unique,” The Guardian reported.
The firm said upgrades to its Qt software development kit for Symbian apps would boost developer’s income, and has reduced the lines of code required to write apps by 70%.
"We have made it much simpler, removed obstacles and made it more lucrative for people to build apps for our phones,” Forum Nokia vice president Purnima Kochikar explained.
The newly-launched smartphones, the E7, C7 and C6, which run on the new Symbian ^3 platform, will launch by year-end. Nokia also showcased another Symbian ^3 device, the much-hyped N8 “entertainment smartphone.”
Ovi Store has been given a makeover to simplify access to applications, and developers also gain access to in-app billing capabilities.
A beta version of Ovi Maps was also launched, updated with search capabilities allowing users to text or email their location, and more detailed maps showing underground and overland trains, trams, real-time traffic information and safety alerts.