January 9, 2007 and Steve Jobs introduced the iPhone to the world . To say that opinion was divided would be gross understatement. Many experts decided it would be a flop: “The iPhone will fail, and fail badly. It’s the Pippin all over again.”
In Espoo, Finland and across the Atlantic in Waterloo, Ontario, two rather smug multi-national companies were poring over the negative comments with high satisfaction and a self-justified tinge of Schadenfreude. Apple’s toy phone and Steve Jobs’ hubris would be but a footnote in the continuing and relentlessly successful saga of the Nokia and the BlackBerry.
Fast forward five years and not only Apple but Google, Samsung, HTC and others have carved up the new smartphone market among themselves. There’s a chill wind blowing through Espoo and Waterloo as the former titanics of the mobile phone world rearrange the deck chairs yet again.
RIM’s is a well-documented fall from grace, as suggested in this article, The end of RIM as we know it. The situation in Finland is hardly better, despite the King of Redmond riding over valiantly in an effort to repair Humpty Dumpty. He could eventually succeed; Windows Phone has been very well received and, for some, it’s a mystery that it hasn’t knocked the upstarts off their perches. Then again, he might not. Today, former Nokia-analyst and Asymco statistical guru gives another turn of the screw: Nokia’s evaporating brand value. It’s enough to make you weep, especially if you live in Waterloo or Espoo.