This mysterious counter had popped up on quite a few Nokia websites around the world two days ago. Clicking on the timer takes us to events.nokia.com/countdown, which again doesn’t say much. There are options to add the event reminder to your calendar, be notified via an email, or spread the word about it but that’s it.
On the same page is also a line that says, ‘looks like Nokia is planning something big’. Interesting. The countdown ends on the first day of Nokia World during, the Keynote – Transforming The Way We Connect which would be delivered by none other than Nokia’s top two men, OPK himself and Anssi Vanjoki.
Now, Nokia World isn’t really known for device announcements, so the expectations were low. As much as the inner geek in me wanted a handset, the sane part said it would most likely be a new service in line with Nokia’s vision of becoming an internet company.
However, then I came across this by Robert Scoble who is in Barcelona for Nokia World:
When we got here a Nokia executive met me and bragged that the Internet has no clue what they will announce this week. I asked “what about the touch screen cell phone that I’ve seen rumors about?” He said that no one had gotten it right yet. The announcements are on Wednesday morning (it’s early Monday morning as I post this) so we’ll have to wait to see what they announce. He told me this is one of the only times he can remember when a big announcement has not leaked. He said that even internally only a handful of people have seen the new device they’ll be announcing on Wednesday.
(Note: The announcement is on Tuesday).
Now this piece almost guarantees a handset launch tomorrow, which is in line with the fact that we don’t have an announced S60 device that hasn’t hit the market yet. My guess is an Nseries, touch, but with some sort of a physical keyboard. What do you think?
What they announce tomorrow is going to play a huge role in determining whether Nokia remains the market leader in 2009. The year 2008 was by and large a year which went to Apple as it was able to make serious dents in the smartphone market, will Nokia be able to claw back? The utmost secrecy and hype with which tomorrow’s announcement is being handled sure make me thing Nokia is serious about getting it right this time.
I leave you with these lines from Scoble, “this is the week that Nokia either shines or moves to the B list of the cell phone market. Yeah, you won’t know how this week turned out for a year or two, but there is no bigger week for Nokia.” Couldn’t agree more.