The Ovi brand is dead. The services will continue to live on under the Nokia umbrella and will transition unaffected with no impact on future roadmaps. New Nokia devices coming July onwards will ship with the new branding in place and older devices will be slowly transitioned via software updates with everything being completed by the end of 2012. Nokia stresses that this is a pure re-branding exercise and that the transition should be smooth and seamless.
Nokia’s EVP and Chief Marketing Officer, Jerri DeVard explains the shift:
“We have made the decision to change our service branding from Ovi to Nokia. By centralizing our services identity under one brand, not two, we will reinforce the powerful master brand of Nokia and unify our brand architecture – while continuing to deliver compellingopportunities and experiences for partners and consumers alike.”
Just when things like Ovi Maps and the Ovi Store were beginning to become household names, comes the change to Nokia Maps and the Nokia Store. This move is in line with Nokia’s decision to stop trying to be an ‘internet company’ and re-focus on what they do best, hardware.
Good thing Nokia’s email services never came around to being called ‘Ovi Messaging’.
Personally speaking, this makes a lot of sense. One brand means that millions are spent on popularising just one brand alone and that people clearly identify with Maps etc being Nokia’s and not as a third party app. Why Nokia chose to go the ‘Ovi’ way in the first place is a mystery, as an internet company it perhaps wanted two divisions to its businesses, services and devices. Now, that’s gone.