Nokia

Nokia

The Nokia 6 took one minute to sell out

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We’re pretty used to hearing about rapidly-sold-out flash sales in China from the likes of Xiaomi, but HMD Global has just added its name to the list. In its first flash sale for the Nokia 6, it took just one minute to sell out all available units.

See also:

Watch the Nokia 6 get unboxed

1 week ago

Over a million people already registered their interest in buying the phone on JD.com, the exclusive Chinese e-tailer for the device. Even with its relatively pricey 1699 Yuan price tag and meager Snapdragon 430 chipset, a lot of those interested parties put their money where their mouth is when the opportunity to buy finally presented itself today.

Of course, we don’t know exactly how much stock HMD had in the flash sale, but it’s safe to say the next one will have even higher numbers if the performance of the first sale is anything to go by. The second flash sale is expected to occur in the next couple of days.

Rumor check: No, this phone is not “Nokia 8”

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A new rumor has been making the rounds over the last days. Supposedly, Qualcomm openly showcased Nokia’s upcoming flagship Android phone at CES, allowing anyone to see it, if only you knew where to look for it. This “Nokia 8” phone would be powered by the new Snapdragon 835, and the rumor claims, it would feature an excellent OIS system and other top features.

The rumor was picked up by high-profile websites, including Forbes and BGR, as well as hundreds of smaller outlets. As much as we can tell, all the reports are based on the claims made by Total Tech Media, a YouTube channel that used to be called TK Tech News.

If you’ve been following mobile tech news over the past few years, the name TK Tech News might raise a few red flags. The person behind the name was exposed as a fraudster; Evan Blass accused him of swindling him out of his crowdfunded money; and many of his “leaks” turned out to be low-effort fakes. TK Tech News rebranded to Total Tech Media at some point and laid low for a while. Now he is back with this Nokia story.

If the source of the Nokia 8 report doesn’t put you off, consider that there is actually zero evidence that the devices shown in the Total Tech videos are actually Nokia phones. Total Tech claims they feature Nokia branding, but that’s not visible in any of the videos.

Total Tech’s strongest argument that the phone is a Nokia is the general shape of the camera, which slightly resembles the design of some old Windows Phone Nokia phones like the 1020. This argument is flimsy, at best.

Several of the photos that Total Tech presented to support his claims are actually stolen from German tech site WinFuture.de. You can see them here. WinFuture’s Roland Quandt, whom you might know from his solid leaks track record, actually called out Tech Media for his deception. Here’s the video in question:

Meanwhile, Total Tech/TK claims he got the pictures from “a manufacturer in Russia.”

Rumor check: No, this phone is not “Nokia 8”

So, if the phone in the videos is not the Nokia 8, what is it? It’s just a reference device, a custom device that Qualcomm built to showcase a specific feature – in this case, Snapdragon 835’s imaging capabilities. Roland Quandt, who actually handled the device at CES, confirmed it on Twitter.

We’ll go ahead and call the Nokia 8 story for what is: a fake.

Hey, don’t get your hopes up about a folding Nokia phone

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A Nokia patent was unearthed by Phone Arena yesterday pertaining to a foldable device. The patent was granted to Nokia last September by the US Patent & Trademark Office. Nokia also submitted a flexible battery patent filing in 2013 and now “sources” are telling The Korea Herald things like, “The chances of Nokia entering the foldable smartphone race are high.”

Yet, the existence of the patents is not, itself, confirmation of future product release.

Like the aforementioned flexible battery, Nokia actually filed for the folding device patent (an image from which can be seen above) in 2013. This was before Finnish startup HMD Global launched and acquired the Nokia license. Even if Nokia was investing in folding phones several years ago, that doesn’t mean HMD Global has any intention of pursuing them now.

See also:

HMD Global reveals new details about its first Android phone, the Nokia 6

5 days ago

Phone Arena also suggests that Nokia has been filing similar patents since 2005. Likewise, Samsung has been submitting foldable patent designs for almost a decade without putting a foldable device into mass production. Patented technology can sit for years before being used in any meaningful way — if it ever is. We’re still waiting on Google’s electronic throat tattoos and selfie walking stick.

This is not to say that HMD Global won’t enter the foldable smartphone arena. When/if foldable smartphones become a trend, every manufacturer will naturally want in on it and this is when a foldable phone patent could become very useful.

But HMD was formed less than a year ago and it’s yet to demonstrate that it can make a competent and successful Android smartphone even when working in a proven market.

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Come and watch this Nokia 6 unboxing video

1 day ago

Add to this that its first Android smartphone, the recently revealed Nokia 6, is notably lacking in innovative features and the notion that it could be on the verge of delivering a groundbreaking folding device sounds rather romantic.

Rumors are circulating that Samsung, LG, Apple and others are working on foldable devices and there are many indications that the technology will appear this year. Analysts suggest that it’s going to be a mighty lucrative business, too. Before the waters have been thoroughly tested, though — before the big smartphone players have launched their first folding device — it’s unrealistic to expect a folding Nokia-branded phone.

That’s my take, what’s yours? Let me know in the comments.

Come and watch this Nokia 6 unboxing video

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The upcoming Nokia Android phone, the Nokia 6, has been unboxed in a YouTube video ahead of its January 19 release. The device was acquired by news site TechDroider which was sent the unit from China, where the phone will go on sale.

The Nokia 6 has been developed by HMD Global, the Finnish startup which now owns the Nokia brand, and is powered by Android Nougat. The smartphone displays the familiar Nokia logo onscreen as it boots up and the host of the video notes that the device “just feels premium” in the hand. Check it out below

The Nokia 6 comes with a 5.5-inch Full HD display with 2.5D Gorilla Glass, Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 processor, 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of internal storage. It features a 16 MP rear camera and an 8 MP front-facing camera, and provides dual amplifiers that HMD Global says will “deliver a 6 dB louder sound than a regular amp.” The handset also supports Dolby Atmos — designed to give audio a more 3D sound effect.

See also:

HMD Global reveals new details about its first Android phone, the Nokia 6

4 days ago

YouTube is awash with similar hands-on videos now appealing to all tastes. If you would prefer to see someone demonstrate the Nokia 6 accompanied by an organ soundtrack, for example, with a teapot and cakes in the background, go here.

Nokia 6 sales will begin in China on January 19, reservations go live

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If you live in China, you can now put down a little money now to make sure you can be one of the first to get the Nokia 6 smartphone. JD.com is taking online paid reservations on its site for 66 CNY (about $9) for the Android phone, ahead of its official launch on Thursday, Jan. 19.

See also:

5 things Nokia, and HMD Global, need to do for a successful 2017 Android phone launch

November 23, 2016

JD.com will be the exclusive retail site for the Nokia 6, which is the first phone with the famous brand that’s being released by HMD Global. The company surprised the world last weekend when it announced that the Nokia 6 will be sold exclusively in China, for the price of 1,699 CNY, or about $245.

The Nokia 6 itself will have a 5.5-inch Full HD display with 2.5D Gorilla Glass on top, and will have Android 7.0 Nougat installed out of the box.  Inside it will have the Qualcomm Snapdragon 430 processor along with 4 GB of RAM and 64 GB of onboard storage. It will also have a 16 MP rear camera and an 8 MP front-facing camera.

HMD Global is already preparing to reveal even more Nokia-branded Android smartphones. Today, it stated on the Nokia Mobile Facebook page that more announcements will be coming on Feb. 26, just before the start of the 2017 Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, Spain.

Nokia teases Android phone announcement on February 26

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Nokia has teased an announcement for its upcoming Nokia 6 Android phone on February 26. In a Facebook post, Nokia wrote: “Get ready! The Nokia 6 is coming to China! More announcements to follow on February 26th… Save the date!”

Nokia didn’t provide specifics on the announcement, though the February 26 date coincides with the MWC 2017 event in Barcelona, which opens to the public on February 27. It’s possible that the device will be on display there, especially since HMD Global — which owns the rights to the Nokia trademark — is eyeing an early 2017 launch for the handset.

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Nokia may be developing its own mobile digital assistant called “Viki”

2 days ago

The Nokia 6, revealed last week during CES, will become the first Android smartphone to wear the Nokia brand. It will go on sale in China exclusively through retailer JD.com for 1,699 CNY (~$245). HMD also plans to unveil more Nokia phones in the first half of 2017.

For further details on the Nokia 6 hit the link, and check out its new ad below.

Nokia may be developing its own mobile digital assistant called “Viki”

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Nokia may be jumping in on the digital assistant bandwagon that’s already seen involvement from several of the top tech companies. Nokia filed for a trademark today in Europe for something code named “Viki”, which the application says will be used for mobile and web-based “assistants working with digital knowledge and combining all data sources into a single chat and voice-based interface.”

See also:

10 best personal assistant apps for Android

November 21, 2016

At the moment, that’s all we know about this filing. When asked by Engadget, a Nokia spokesperson said that it does file applications for trademarks but “we don’t comment on how, whether or when they may be used for Nokia products or services.” However, if Nokia is indeed creating a new digital AI, it will be joining many others already available, including Apple’s Siri, Amazon’s Alexa, Microsoft’s Cortana, and the recently launched Google Assistant.

Over the weekend, HMD Global revealed that the launch of its first Android-based smartphone with the Nokia brand, called the Nokia 6, will happen in China sometime in early 2017. There’s no word on if HMD’s branding agreement with Nokia would extend to any mobile software developed by the company, including any possible AI assistant. It’s also possible that “Viki” could also be offered for any smartphone or tablet devices as well.

2016 in review: 10 defining moments in the world of Android

2016 will surely be entered in the annuls of history as annus horribilis. But for the Android world at least, the tragic lows have been counterbalanced by equally euphoric highs. From the emergence of the outstandingly good Pixel phones at the expense of the Nexus program to the all-too-brief reign of the Galaxy Note 7, the year has been bittersweet. In what can only be described as one of the most tumultuous years for Android on record, here are ten defining moments of 2016.

See also:

15 best Android apps released in 2016

20 hours ago

Samsung Galaxy Note 7 recall

Easily the biggest Android event of 2016, the global sales halt and subsequent total recall of the Samsung Galaxy Note 7 was the Android story of the year. It had everything: the world’s largest manufacturer of smartphones, explosions, mystery and arguably the best Android phone ever to have graced our pockets. As unfortunate as it was unprecedented, the Galaxy Note 7 recall will remain a black spot on 2016 not only for Samsung but for Android in general.

Google gets in the hardware game and Nexus dies

If you had asked most Android fans a year ago (at peak Nexus 6P popularity) if they’d want to drop the Nexus program in favor of Google-built hardware, you’d probably have been lucky to get more than one hand in ten raised. But Google clearly thought it was a good move and graced us with the Pixel phones this year, sadly at the expense of the Nexus program. Nexus fans are justifiably miffed, but there’s no denying the Pixel has proven it was a risky bet that has already paid off in spades.

2016 in review: 10 defining moments in the world of Android

CyanogenMod breathed its last

Almost as long as there has been Android there has been CyanogenMod, with the custom ROM even pre-dating the Nexus program. But Steve Kondik took some risks that unfortunately didn’t pay off as well as Google’s Pixel punt. Arguably getting mixed up with folks he would have been better off avoiding, the fate of the various Cyanogen properties has looked grim for a while now. The recent announcement that Cyanogen Inc. will shut its doors by December 31 demolished the infrastructure of CM with it, marking the end of an era. Thankfully the soul of CM will live on as Lineage OS.

“Cheap” phones got redefined, again

The definition of a “cheap” Android phone has been steadily rewritten in recent years, perhaps starting with the game-changing Moto G. That same impulse – offering rock solid performance at a rock bottom price – has officially reached the mid-range too, with more and more “high-end” phones priced like mid-rangers. Despite diminutive price tags, these phones deliver similar specs and performance as their more expensive competition. The honor 8, OnePlus 3 and ZTE Axon 7 are obvious examples in 2016, a year when an awesome phone no longer had to be an expensive phone.

2016 in review: 10 defining moments in the world of Android

The Xiaomi Mi Mix shows OEMs what users want

Xiaomi has never really been known for its original smartphone design, fitting comfortably into that dated Chinese approach of cloning popular device designs. But all that changed with the Mi Mix, a concept phone that took everyone by surprise, not least because it miraculously avoided being leaked in advance of its announcement. A phone this cool, this futuristic, has been on every Android fans mind for years, and while we’ve seen similar phones before, the Mi Mix will be remembered as the phone that ushered in the era of the bezel-less smartphone.

Pokemon Go takes the world by storm

To say Pokemon Go has had a troubled childhood would be an understatement. If it were a teen idol it would’ve been in rehab twice by now. But despite a painfully slow global rollout, launching in a bizarre half-finished state with nowhere near enough server infrastructure, requiring a permanent connection to a battery pack and offending its most dedicated fans at almost every turn, Pokemon Go was the game of 2016. Augmented reality has been around for years, but it wasn’t until Pokemon Go that regular folks fully understood what it was. That, and it made $600 million in a couple of months.

2016 in review: 10 defining moments in the world of Android

Nokia sells its brand to HMD Global

Nokia finally gave up the hardware ghost after a misguided OS bet on Windows Phone that resulted in Microsoft selling off the company for spare parts in early 2016. Fortunately, the branding rights to the Nokia name went to a newly-formed company called HMD Global Oy, a hastily constructed mishmash of Nokia veterans committed to keeping the flame alive. With tons of experience and a deep-seated love for the Nokia of old under their belts, HMD is promising new Nokia-branded devices in 2017. They’ll be running Android and will have the whole world watching when they are eventually unveiled at MWC 2017.

BlackBerry sells its brand to TCL

With the Priv, BlackBerry presented itself as a potential Android manufacturer to pay attention to. But the Priv didn’t quite fly and the next couple of Android-based follow ups were equally overpriced. With one last BlackBerry-built device planned for 2016, the company has now sold its naming rights to TCL Communications, meaning come 2017 there will be no more BlackBerry-designed devices from the iconic Canadian company. BlackBerry will now focus on software, security and enterprise and TCL will take a punt at getting BlackBerry-branded hardware up and running on Android.

2016 in review: 10 defining moments in the world of Android

OnePlus returns to form, twice

When OnePlus’ follow up to the breakout OnePlus One failed to even outdo 2015 flagships, it looked like the company’s “flagship killer” promise might have been misguided. But with lesson in humility learned, OnePlus returned with a vengeance in 2016, delivering outstanding phones in both the OnePlus 3 and OnePlus 3T. OnePlus offended a lot of its core fans by releasing an updated device just a few months after the first, but OnePlus has practically turned stepping on toes into an art form. And when the results are as good as the OnePlus 3T, a few bruised toes are a small price to pay.

Project Ara dies and modules face an uncertain future

For a while it looked like 2016 might be the year of the module. With Project Ara on the horizon, the LG G5‘s modular slot design and the Moto Z‘s magnetic version, modules had officially arrived. But then no one bought the G5 or its Friends, Project Ara got scrapped entirely and Moto Mods found themselves the only residents left in an overpriced graveyard populated by ghosts. Lenovo may now be the best company doing modules, but it might also be the only company doing them next year.

2016 in review: 10 defining moments in the world of Android

Bonus mention: Android apps on Chrome OS

This may not have registered too highly on most folks’ radar this year, but bringing the million-plus Android apps to Chrome OS devices suddenly made Chromebooks even more compelling. Already massively popular for offering great performance at an almost laughably low price, Chromebooks have already become the default option for education and business, with Chromebooks outselling Macs for the first time in 2016. With Google Play’s massive app library now available, Chrome OS and Chromebooks are only going to get bigger.

Wrap up

2016 was a year of game-changing events: from the end of CyanogenMod, Nexus and Project Ara to imminent rebirths for BlackBerry, Nokia and Lineage OS. Affordable phones held their own against expensive rivals better than they ever have before and finally all major flagships raised the bar on camera performance. Google Now/Now on Tap essentially got supplanted by Google Assistant, AR and AI was everywhere and tablets and smartwatches were nowhere.

Qualcomm became reliable again, Alphabet was briefly the most valuable company in the world and Samsung’s crown prince finally ascended to the board of directors before losing face in the wake of the South Korean presidential impeachment scandal. Nougat arrived, the Note 7 departed and we all looked like idiots in VR headsets (when we weren’t busy talking to our speakers that is).

HTC, Sony and Moto largely dropped off the radar, only to be replaced by Pixel, Huawei and Xiaomi. Headphone ports became an endangered species, smartwatches saw signs of life with Google promising new Android Wear 2.0 watches in early 2017 and everyone and their dog ran beta previews for Android 7.0. It was a wild rollercoaster of a year, no doubt, but we wouldn’t have it any other way.

What did we miss and what are you predicting for 2017?

HMD Global rumored to launch as many as four Nokia-branded phones in mid-2017

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One of the most anticipated smartphone launches of 2017 centers on HMD Global’s promise to release devices with the Nokia branding. Today, a new yet unconfirmed report claims that the company will in fact launch as many as four Android phones with the Nokia name sometime in the second and third quarters of 2017.

See also:

5 things Nokia, and HMD Global, need to do for a successful 2017 Android phone launch

November 23, 2016

This latest report comes from DigiTimes, using unnamed sources. It says the four new phones will have display sizes that will range from between 5 to 5.7-inches, with resolutions in WQHD or Full HD. The story added that the displays will come from a number of different sources, such as LG Century Technology (CTC) and Innolux.

The story also claims that HMD will reveal its first Nokia-branded phone in late February at the Mobile World Congress trade show. It cites another Chinese-based news source which claims the first phone will be called the Nokia DIC, and will come in two models; one with a 5.0-inch display and 2GB of RAM, and the other with a 5.5-inch screen and 3GB of RAM.

As always, be sure to take these unconfirmed reports with a grain of salt. We’ll be sure to let you know if HMD Global makes any official announcements regarding these rumors.

Nokia sues Apple for alleged patent infringements

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This post originally appeared on our sister site, TabTimes.

Nokia is clearly not wishing Apple a happy holiday season. The Finnish company has filed lawsuits in both the US and Europe against the Cupertino, California home of the iPhone, iPad and MacBook Pro. The company claims Apple is using 32 of its patents in its devices without Nokia’s permission and is not paying the required royalties for their use.

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Here's what we know, and what’s rumored, about the Nokia 2017 comeback

1 week ago

Nokia sold off its smartphone division to Microsoft in 2014, but that company has since shut down or sold off nearly all of those assets. However, Nokia still holds claim to thousands of patents under its Nokia Technologies division, which it says are being used in many smartphones, tablets and other products. In today’s press release announcing the lawsuits, the company stated Apple did agree to pay for the use of some of its patents in 2011. However, it added that since then the company has been trying to get Apple to pay for the use of other patents it controls for the past few years. Those talks apparently went nowhere, so the company felt it needed to take its dispute to the court system.

Nokia stated the patents that it claims Apple is using, but not paying for, include ones relating to “display, user interface, software, antenna, chipsets and video coding.” So far, Apple has yet to officially respond to Nokia’s accusations.

This new legal battle comes to light as the Nokia brand is slated to return to the smartphone market in 2017. The company has licensed its name to HMD Global, who will be launching smartphones with the Nokia brand in the first half of the new year.