Nokia clarifies N8 shipment schedule

Nokia (NYSE:NOK) clarified reports that the company will delay the release of its new flagship smartphone, the N8. The latest turmoil for the company comes on the first day of CEO Stephen Elop's tenure at the handset giant.

Nokia N8 vidoeSeveral reports, including in the Wall Street Journal and Engadget, said the company will delay the release of the phone slightly as it makes some final adjustments. "The amount of pre-orders has exceeded our expectations and we are working hard to deliver the Nokia N8 to the market. In some markets, we had planned to start delivering the Nokia N8s to our pre-order customers by the end of September," the company said in a statement. "To ensure a great user experience, we have decided to hold the shipments for a few weeks to do some final amends."

The company said it was thrilled with the response to the phone, which runs on the Symbian^3 platform, and that it expects customers to get the device in October. Nokia did not say what caused the delay.

After those reports filtered out, the company took to its blog, Nokia Conversations, to clarify its release plans. Nokia said it still expects to release the device by the end of the third quarter, and that as with any global launch exact release dates will vary by operator and region. "We have received a record number of online pre-orders for the Nokia N8," the company said on its blog. "We had targeted our online pre-order customers to receive their N8s by the end of September. As it can take time from the beginning of shipment to arriving at their doorstep, in full transparency, we have advised our pre-order customers that they should expect their new Nokia N8 in October."

The kerfuffle over the N8 is the latest bump in the road for the company. Nokia highlighted the N8 during its Nokia World event in London last week. However, the conference took place amid a shakeup of Nokia's management. Elop was named to replace Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo just ahead of the conference; Anssi Vanjoki, the head of Nokia's smartphone unit, announced his resignation days later; and Nokia said Chairman Jorma Ollila will step down in 2012. 

For more:
- see this WSJ article (sub. req.)
- see this Engadget post
- see this Bloomberg article
- see this PCWorld article
- see this Nokia Conversations post

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