Nokia Plan B (take 2)?

    The other day, a Finnish startup Jolla, which announced itself this summer, consisting of former employees of Nokia’s Maemo & MeeGo division, sent out an official press release in which it informed the media that the young company managed to raise 200 million euros to develop a MeeGo-based operating room system and production of smartphones under its control. Interest in the Finnish start-up was shown by the Hong Kong Cyberport IT cluster. The OS got the name Sailfish, which in the perepod means Sailfish (the name of the company itself, I recall, translates as Dinghy). Smartphones promise by the spring of 2013. And literally it just became known that on November 21-22 the interface of the new OS will be presented in Helsinki and SDK tools for developing applications will be available.


    In parallel with this information, another indirectly appeared about Nokia: allegedly Microsoft is going to release its own smartphones running WP8. Nokia knows nothing about these plans. Nevertheless, all the same specialized media again started talking about the fact that Microsoft once again wants to substitute Nokia. Let me remind you, similar conversations were conducted in late June and early July of this year, when after the presentation of WP8 it turned out that Nokia’s previously released smartphones on WP7.5 would not receive a full update to WP8. It was then that there were rumors about a certain Plan B, which Nokia supposedly has in case Microsoft turns out to be not the most friendly partner, or something goes wrong with WP8.

    It was absolutely obvious to me that the basis for such a Plan B could be the Linux development of Nokia, although not massive, but cult in certain circles. Massness is an acquired business, it is much more important that authority should be the basis for this massness. Steve Jobs is also not from scratch built the current popularity of Apple. It is unlikely that he would have succeeded if Apple did not have a core of fans, a fan community. It was this fan community (whose members were, among others, very influential people) that popularized new Apple products.

    Based on this confidence, I wrote a column on Nomobile.ruabout what this very notorious Plan B Nokia could have been, the column is not so much journalistic as conspiracy theological, but on the other hand, conspiracy theology is just a dramatic technique, and journalism is one of the varieties of dramaturgy. And now, literally a day after the release of this column, events began to occur that could be considered as an activated Plan B, but it could be exactly the opposite: as a complete collapse of my conspiracy theories. Be that as it may, a week later the hitherto unknown (although founded at the end of 2011) company Jolla appeared on the IT horizon. At some point, it even turned out that Nokia had transferred to Jolla all the necessary patents to support Maemo & MeeGo devices issued by the Finnish IT giant, but this rumor was denied by evening:

    Puzzled by everything that happened, I wrote another column on , in which I tried to bring rationally-pragmatic intonation into the events, they say, why not Nokia really transfer the necessary rights to Jolla to support Maemo5 and MeeGo Harmattan (N900 smartphones, N950, N9), only not on a gratuitous basis (for what reason, actually?), But on a completely commercial one. Let Nokia develop and, thus, bring profit. But of course, no reaction to my exhortations followed. But, after some time, Nokia sold Qt, which it acquired in 2008, and sold it to the Finnish company Digia. By the way, the first 10 million euros that Jolla was formed into were also of Finnish origin.

    On the eve of the joint presentation of WP8-smartphones from Nokia and Microsoft, photos of a qwerty-smartphone on MeeGo called Lauta suddenly appeared on the network - supposedly it was ready for release along with the N9 and N950. What would it be, I thought. Is Nokia at a joint presentation with Microsoft will introduce a smartphone on MeeGo? And in general, what is Jolla really: a project of Nokia itself, or a team of separatists who separated from the empire? And why from the very beginning Jolla CEO Jussi Hurmola insisted that the startup under his leadership would not support N9? And why, then, in spite of these statements, does Jolla make every possible use of Nokia products on Maemo and MeeGo in its advertising? But Nokia is silent at the same time, as if everything should be so?

    For example, a video released by Jolla:

    On September 5, Nokia introduced two of the coolest smartphones on WP8. No one has had such a number of product innovations for a very long time. Naturally, not a word was said about the smartphone on MeeGo. And on September 8, a certain presentation of Jolla was scheduled. Have you already made a prototype? - I thought. But no, the presentation actually turned out to be rather a conference or a seminar at which the future of the MerProject project was discussed, the achievements of which are planned to be used in the new OS, now called Sailfish. And this despite the fact that MerProject is far from the only project developing on the basis of smartphones released by Nokia with pre-installed Linux OSes. In the repositories of, for example, there is a distribution distribution of the Linux assembly Nemo , designed for installation on the N900 and N950.

    In general, the devil himself will break his leg here, as they say. Nothing really is clear.
    Jussi Hurmola from the very beginning stated that the new operating system from Jolla will support applications from PlayMarket for Android. However, in connection with this, it is interesting to recall another statement, this time by Nokia CEO Steven Elop. Once, after the release of N9, he said that MeeGo is the OS of the future, this is what mobile devices will look like in the future.

    Honestly, watching how actively the application base for N9 is developing, which applications appear in for N9, for some reason I believe it. No other platform has such multifunctional clients like Twetter, YouTube, SoundCloud, etc. Compared to them, similar applications for Android and iOS really seem to be the last century.

    Perhaps by the end of the year some kind of clarity will appear in this whole intricate story. Personally, I still really would like Jolla to maintain the continuity of Nokia's Linux devices, and Nokia, in turn, helped her in this, on mutually beneficial conditions, of course. The Maemo & MeeGo project has always been a kind of autonomy, a laboratory of Nokia. Or is Nokia planning to launch its smartphone on the MeeGo Harmattan?

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