Nokia is aiming to beat the likes of BlackBerry and snatch the mobile email top spot before the end of the decade. Scott Cooper, VP of mobility solutions in Nokia’s Enterprise Solutions division, said the handset giant will be “the leader in the market, specifically around this category of technology and this category of devices by 2008″.
“We have great aspirations in this space – it’s unbelievably important and strategic for the company,” he added.
We need to do more than just be handset provider of choice… We need to do more than provide just one component.
One of the challenges the Finnish phone maker needs to overcome is “building credibility”, Cooper said – going beyond the traditional image of ‘candy bar phone maker Nokia’.
“We need to do more than just be handset provider of choice… We need to do more than provide just one component.” Success depends on software, applications, security and devices, Cooper said. “We believe we need to participate in all these areas to be market leader.”
The company is already having a stab at the devices and services combination, with the Business Center email product and Eseries messaging handsets. Customers have yet to be announced but the Nokia Business Center has already attracted over 35 pilots in corporations worldwide.
Going forward, Nokia knows it’ll need help from its friends. “We have work to do in getting access to the customer base – we won’t do that alone, we’ll do that with a broad range of partners,” Cooper said. “We’ve been fairly selective who we work with.”
Nokia has already signed partnerships with the likes of RIM and Good, allowing the email vendors to sell their services over Nokia’s devices. Cooper acknowledged the decision to work so closely with a competitor may seem odd.
“It may seem schizophrenic. A number of partnerships we have may seem to overlap – and in some cases they do overlap,” he said, adding the market is more a horses-for-courses scene now. “No one vendor can serve it all. [Different vendors'] products look all very similar… but they serve a diverse base of customers. No one vendor is going to get all of that.”