There’s a long running chain of speculation regarding a potential Nokia Android smartphone. Many want to see the battered manufacturer return to its former glory and believe that Android could be the key. China-based rumors are once again stoking the fires, suggesting that the Nokia development team behind the N9 is working on an Android flagship.
The Nokia N9 was released back in 2011, ran the Linux-based MeeGo operating system and could be booted up with Android ICS after some considerable effort. Aesthetically, it looked quite similar to the current Lumia series, as you can see pictured above.
A changeover to a flagship smartphone seems like a rational move given the poor reception of the ill-fated Nokia X series, which has since been taken over by Microsoft. However, the flagship market is a lot more competitive these days and we don’t have any idea how Nokia’s rumored Android smartphone would stand out from the pack.
Microsoft is currently in possession of a license to use the Nokia brand name, meaning that Nokia won’t be able to release a smartphone sporting its own name just yet. This leaves Nokia with limited options if it were to release the phone within the next year or so: come up with a new brand to sell the smartphone under or release its design through another manufacturing company, such as Foxconn.
However, Microsoft only has use of the Nokia logo with Lumia device for 18-months, following the deal between the two companies, and has already made plans to place its own logo on future Lumia handsets. The agreement states Nokia would be free to use its own name on smartphones sometime in 2016, but Microsoft retains the name for use with feature phones for the next 10 years.
After ending its relationship with Microsoft, Nokia is no doubt keen to re-enter the market. Do you think that it would be wise for the company to release an Android phone quickly under a different brand or wait until it can release a flagship complete with the iconic Nokia nametag?