Barcelona, Spain – Today at Mobile World Congress, Nokia unveiled five new affordable handsets including a new family of smartphones debuting on the Nokia X software platform. Based on the Android Open Source Project AOSP, and backed by Nokias deep ties with operators, the Nokia X platform gives AndroidTM developers the chance to tap into, and profit from, a rapidly expanding part of the market.
It’s worth remembering the distinction between operating systems, platforms and ecosystems.
Today’s announcement is consistent with the declaration of Nokia is engaged in a “war of ecosystems.” Note that this is in contrast to “a war of platforms” or a “battle of operating systems” or a “competition of devices.”
Devices are commoditizing, operating systems are commodities and the Android platform is a commodity. Value will not be captured in any of these technology modules. Ecosystems are another matter. It’s where Facebook (and its acquisitions) reside. It’s where Google lives and it’s where iTunes has been for a decade.
Nokia’s adoption of AOSP as an operating system is consistent with the ecosystem strategy set forth three years ago, and is also consistent with Microsoft’s competitive strategy.
Which is why I believe Microsoft is not only comfortable with this development but had agreed to it over a year ago when work on this initiative was already well under way.