You heard by now that Nokia chose to use Windows Phone 7 as main smartphone OS.
I certainly won’t buy any WP phone ever. I’d rather buy some Android phone as long as it doesn’t depend on Windows (like Samsung’s AFAIK do).
As you may recall, Palm went a similar route before: PalmSource developed PalmOS 6 based on many technologies from BeOS. They had a superior OS but Palm never used it in any devices. Instead they sticked with PalmOS 5: Outdated technology but binary compatible to existing applications.
As PalmOS 5 was gradually replaced with Symbian as dominant OS, Palm partnered with Microsoft and shipped Windows Mobile on its devices. In the short term it helped Palm gain back some market share. In the meantime PalmSource was bought by ACCESS and Palm worked on webOS.
webOS seems to be a very nice OS but clinging to PalmOS 5 first and later partnering with Microsoft distracted Palm. The result: webOS came too late. Palm was bought by HP.
Change some nouns above and you’ll pretty much get Nokia’s recent history.
However, Nokia at least was wise enough to have two loopholes: The first is that Qt stays for lower end phones which means Nokia won’t stop developing it. The second is – and that one seems underrepresented in the news coverage – Nokia still plans to develop MeeGo “computers”.
You may not know it but by Nokia’s official terminology the Maemo-based N900 is not a smartphone. It’s not a phone at all. It’s a “mobile computer” that happens to be usable as phone.
If Nokia continues those “mobile computers”, the situation is not so grim. However if Nokia really bets on MS – and history showed us that doing that is a safe bet for doom – I’ll say Lenovo will buy them.