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Thoughts From Nokia World: The Winds Of Change Come With Big Red Balloons

The number one thing that I have wanted Nokia to do for a long time is shout about its products, tell the world how awesome they were instead of letting them speak for themselves, have powerful aggressive keynotes and take the competition head on whenever, wherever they could and this precisely why this Nokia World came as a very pleasant surprise.

Thoughts From Nokia World: The Winds Of Change Come With Big Red Balloons

Just one day before Nokia World Anssi Vanjoki quit, which was two two days after OPK had left. I imagine that does dent the morale and bring at least a little uncertainty in. So more than anything, my eyes were on they keynote’s tone and tenor instead of the device announcements because the devices will come and go, but the tone Nokia set on September 14, 2010 would define how they shape up in the next 5 years.

But the moment I walked into the Nikalas Savander and Anssi Vanjoki keynote, I could literally see the change. Nokia was talking about the competition, they virtually kick-started Nokia World with Apple’s use of the words ‘Connecting People’. Nokia never does that. Then came Anssi Vanjoki, all charged up and it was treat to see him in action. There were points made left right and center, no one was spared. Here are a few of my own tweets, I think they would capture my reaction better than what I could write now.

  • Scott at Apple shown off. The connecting people words played with. Sweet. #nokiaworld
  • We’ll not apologise for not being Apple, Samsung and so on. We are Nokia. I like the tone of this keynote. #nokiaworld
  • Oh yes. Nokia sells more smartphones than Apple + Android combined. #nokiaworld There in your face. ‘We shift into high gear for high end’
  • “Nokia and not #google is the leader in mapping” #nokiaworld Nokia is taking them on aggressively.
  • Shoutout to people who said the N8 is the same old @Symbian by looking at the homescreen. ‘You’re wong’. #nokiaworld
  • An aggressive Anssi on stage. @nokia ‘s tone is like it has never been before. #nokiaworld

So there you go, Apple, Samsung, Google all talked about. There were even phrases like ‘One more thing’ used. ‘You want numbers, here are a few numbers’  was said before the smartphone number were discussed. Here are another couple of  things that I missed during the keynote.

  • ‘Cooperation with Microsoft will be even easier and better now’. Anssi Vanjoki while talking about more enterprise features that will come to the Nokia E7.
  • He also mentioned avoiding ‘Speeding tickets’ while talking about Ovi Maps. If you don’t get the context, here’s some.

At his last Nokia World, Anssi Vanjoki went out all guns blazing. He will be missed. But that’s not the only pleasant surprise. On September 15, the second day of Nokia World, HTC decided to hold its own event in London and they were sending buses to Nokia World to collect people. I am not kidding. What would the old Nokia have done? Just sit there and let it pass. But oh no, things are changing and they did something I least expected. They made survival kits and handed them everyone who was headed to the HTC event from Nokia World. What did it have? See for yourself.

Thoughts From Nokia World: The Winds Of Change Come With Big Red Balloons

An HTC sandwich. I thought it was brilliant. There was tongue in cheek humour, and loads on fun. Sadly, some sections of the media, (specially the ones headed there themselves!) didn’t see the joke in it and started branding Nokia’s move as one in bad taste. Bad taste? Your competition virtually hijacks your annual event and you cannot even joke about it? Nokia suddenly looked like the ‘bully and not the ‘victim’. But if were in Nokia’s shoes, I’d still be happy. Bullys’ get things done, victims remain just that, victims.

Nokia is coming back in a big way. Brace for impact.

PS: If you are wondering, why the red balloon reference? Nokia also sent some teenagers with red Ovi Maps balloons to the venue for HTC’s venue! The cherry on the cake? 😉

[Image Credit Engadget]