Nokia betting on high-powered camera to differentiate new smartphone

Nokia (NYSE:NOK) is expected to unveil a new Lumia smartphone on Thursday that will feature a 41-megapixel camera that the company is hoping will help it distinguish its products from those of its competitors. According to Reuters, the company is hoping the high-powered camera will help make up for its weakness in the app marketplace.

However, analysts are skeptical as to whether a new camera will be enough for the struggling handset maker to regain its leadership in the smartphone market.  "What I'm expecting to see is a powerful device that will differentiate it from competitors' high-end handsets. But whether this will be enough to compete with Samsung and Apple? I doubt it," said Francisco Jeronimo of IDC, according to Reuters.

Although Nokia's Lumia smartphones have received favorable reviews, the devices have struggled in the market against Samsung's Android smartphones and the iPhone.

During the first quarter, Nokia shipped 6.1 million smartphones, of which 5.6 million were Lumia phones (500,000 were Symbian units). However, the company also reported a year-over-year and sequential drop in device sales in North America. Nevertheless, CEO Stephen Elop said the company had high hopes for its Lumia smartphones to gain traction with top U.S. operators such as Verizon Wireless (NYSE:VZ). Indeed, in May Verizon Wireless launched the high-end Nokia Lumia 928 Windows Phone for $99.99 after $50 mail-in-rebate with a two-year contract. The 928 is similar in many respects to the Lumia 920 that AT&T Mobility (NYSE:T) launched late last year.

Earlier this month, Nokia's Chief Marketing Office Tuula Rytila told AdAge that the company plans to be unveil a new marketing campaign that positions the former industry leader as a "challenger" in the market. She also hinted that the company will have bolder creative initiatives with a goal of reigniting the Nokia brand and bringing meaning, relevancy and emotion to the brand.

For more:
- see this Reuters report

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