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Nokia fires warning shots at Apple and Google

April 4, 2012
nokia smartphone beta test

The Microsoft/Nokia dynamic duo is certainly entering the smartphone battlefield with all guns blazing. With Nokia’s all in approach with WP7, both companies have a lot depending on the success of the Lumia 900, Nokia’s flagship device that will be released on AT&T’s network on April 8. Nokia is attempting to carve out a niche for itself in the US, a market in which it has been largely irrelevant for the last few years.

Nokia is being very competitive with the pricing scheme for the Lumia 900, which is free for a new AT&T customer (with a 2 year contract) or $99 for an upgrade. Also, Nokia and Microsoft have engaged in an aggressive marketing campaign to promote the device, with the main fixture being Microsoft’s “Smoked by a Windows Phone” series.

Now, Nokia has turned its sights on Apple and Google, with the “Smartphone Beta Test” campaign.

What is Smartphone Beta Test? primarily features a video of Chris Parnell sitting around, looking extremely bored, waiting for the countdown to finally reach zero. It also features a series of three backdated videos that are supposed to show the faulty decision making process behind some prominent smartphones.

While there is no direct indication, it is very obvious that the videos takes pot-shots at some of the issues the iPhone and Android phones face. The page doesn’t outright say Nokia, but if you notice the scratched logo at the top left corner, it looks like it starts with an N. The timing of this stunt couldn’t have been better either. The countdown stopping on April 6, two days before the launch of the Lumia 900,  strengthens my belief that this is another part of Nokia’s marketing strategy.

Let’s move on to the videos to see what exactly Nokia(?) had to say.

“Death Grip”



It is very obvious at what products these videos are aimed at. The first two are aiming for Apple, with its references to the infamous “Antenna Gate” and the notoriously fragile case of the phone, while the third shoots towards Android products and the increasing use of AMOLED screens by Android OEMs.

What do you think of the videos? Is Nokia going to make a splash on the US market with the Lumia 900? Should Apple and Google be worried?