Here’s a crazy thought for a Friday. Nokia should buy RIM.
The Canadian vendor just posted a loss of $518 million (€411 million) for its fiscal 1Q13 (which ended June 2) and announced another delay in shipping the next iteration of its BlackBerry operating system – a software considered critical to any fightback in the smartphone arena. Those factors have prompted analysts to speculate the firm may need to seek a buyer sooner rather than later, Bloomberg reports.
Now consider Microsoft’s announcement last week that its latest Windows Phone software won’t be backwards compatible with Nokia’s current crop of Lumia smartphones. That decision spawned a number of articles on how the decision has, basically, left Nokia high and dry for the time being. Heck, who would buy your phone when a new, improved, operating system is imminent that you can’t upgrade to?
As I say, it’s just a crazy thought, but what would happen if the Finnish vendor got together with its Canadian rival. The BlackBerry operating system is there for the taking, along with its strong e-mail and business credentials. Both firms have access to developer ‘ecosystems’ to cover the applications market (yes, Nokia may now be on Microsoft, but all those Symbian partners haven’t just vanished). And the combined R&D capabilities of the pair, along with global distribution channels, could prove unbeatable by other individual vendors.
Let’s imagine someone called Elop or Heins is reading this, and decides it’s a good idea. How would it work?
Well, one idea would be to retain the two brands, but point RIM back towards the business market – an area less successful for Nokia, but which is easily the Canadian manufacturer’s core market. The consumer market would be covered by the Nokia brand, which despite its woes remains one of the most recognized names in the business globally. Alternatively NOKRIM may opt to continue covering all device bases, but drop the least successful brand in a particular market - North America, for example, where Nokia has struggled for traction compared to RIM.
It might all sound crazy, but with speculation mounting that both firms are becoming takeover targets, surely some form of voluntary deal between the pair is better than them being sold off individually?