Jun 09 AT 8:20 PM Alberto Vildosola 53 Comments

Nokia CEO says all Android devices look, act the same; we tend to disagree

What do you do when your company is falling apart and no one is buying your product? You diss the competition, of course. Nokia CEO, Stephen Elop, has once again let us know how much he doesn’t like Android.

At the Open Mobile Summit in London today, Elop talked about a wide range of topics, like:  how Nokia is doing better than ever (if by better he means dying, then yes, much better), how Android exists only thanks to the iPhone, how he plans to become a carrier’s best friend and how Windows Phone is not doing well because OEMs prefer Android instead.

However, there was one part of his speech that really caught our attention. Elop claimed that Android devices all look and act the same and that “if it’s too hard to differentiate on a platform, commoditization steps in. But then differentiation starts to creep back in through fragmentation.” In other words, if OEMs want to differentiate themselves, they’ll have to fragment Android.

Mr. Elop seems to have forgotten that Nokia will soon be making Windows Phone devices, which allow for even less differentiation than Android. As some of you might know, Microsoft has some very strict rules on what OEMs can change about Windows Phone devices on both the software and hardware side. Android, on the other hand, doesn’t have such limitations. Instead, Google encourages people to put Android on as much devices as they can.

Because of this openness, we have Android phones that range from very affordable to very expensive, from earth-loving to Apocalypse-ready, and from girly to business-friendly. At the same time, all these Android phones are compatible with each other.

Seeing how worried Elop is about differentiation, it’ll be interesting to see how Nokia manages to stand out from the extremely homologous Windows Phone crowd. Will Microsoft give preference to Nokia and allow it to change Windows Phone? If so, how will HTC and Samsung react? We’ll have to wait and see.

Source: PaidContent.org

Alberto is a college student living somewhere between Miami, Sarasota and the World Wide Web. Although a former iPhone owner, Alberto is now a proud Android enthusiast. You can follow Alberto on Twitter and Google+ for his thoughts unworthy of an article.

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  • Mighty_O

    “Your just jealous because my ass is bigger then yours” lol

    • http://Website ==

      nokia should return to their rubber boots business and let the phone market to the real companies!

  • http://Website Hinds2009

    No wonder nokia is in remission! His statements are mind boggling. Oems put android on their hardware. I think he is hoping to change the windows 7 experience on nokia phones lol his foot in mouth move is sad! Nokia is sad!

  • http://@jeffsandroid Jeffsandroid

    This reminds me of Pirates of Silicon Valley. Microsoft has boarded Nokia and Elop is burning it down from the inside. I used to love my Nokia phones and if Steven Elop had any respect for the company he runs, he would go with Android in a heartbeat. He just wants to devalue the stock enough for Ballmer to chop it up and buy it. Sad to see what was once an innovator dying like this.

    • http://Website The_Omega_Man

      LOL the S.S. Nokia! Watch out for that Iceberg! Oh, and did the last captain happen to, “Pee in his pants,” when he found out about the M$ deal?

  • http://Website gulf inferno

    LOL NOKIA???

  • Drew

    Isn’t the point of WP7 to essentially have the same look and feel no matter what phone you use it on?

    • http://hyperom.com Max

      Even worse, Microsoft explicitly _forbids_ WP7 hardware builders from customizing the interface. They are only allowed to add their own “tile”, while with Android (and heck, even Windows Mobile) allowed HTC/Samsung to pretty much re-do the whole UI as they see fit.

      So save for Nokia tile there’ll be exactly zero UI difference between Nokia phone and HTC one.

  • WickedToby741

    I still don’t see why everyone holds up fragmentation in such a negative light. They act as if choice is a bad thing. Sure, its annoying when an app doesn’t work on your phone when realistically it should, but more often than not this is because of lazy or underfunded developers. Plus, developers are constantly getting better at adapting their software to multiple devices. Personally, I’m willing to stand a little fragmentation in order to have choice in features and devices. There nothing differentiating one Windows Phone from the next minus the possible keyboard. With Android, the experience really is what you make it. Buy a cheap Android and yeah, some higher end apps may not work properly, but when you just scored a smartphone for less than some feature phones, what can you really complain about? It still does more. Android may never be as streamlined as iOS or Windows Phone, but there’s so many more options to choose from.

  • http://Website magiman7

    You are correct Flop making Elop, all android phones do act and look the same. They all act and look better than anything you will ever make with MS. Different doesn’t mean better, but in the realm of mico-nokia, it definitely means worse.

  • http://Website iynfynity

    lol Nokia is for Dumb!!

  • RonWeez

    Mr. Elop , is it? If you haven’t noticed… whatever the fellas at android are doing their making a killing. So with that being said you should take a few pointers. I would say sell your self and ideas to Google android team but from the phones y’all make I don’t think y’all have any worthy ideas…

  • http://Website Giggles

    Lol someones butthurt.

  • http://www.techendeavour.com/ Rahul Aggarwal

    Nokia CEO Elop has intentionally or accidently put his toe in his mouth. Androids are created by Apple was his statement and I personally opine that it is absolutely a lame comment. If Nokia concentrates on innovation rather than just empty talks, they can think of a better standard than Androids that will make the mobile space take up by storm!

  • http://Website Kevin R

    Typical Euro way of thinking, basically hating on something popular but not innovating to come up with something better. Kinda like the French banning FB and Twitter from being mentioned because its unfair. Gimme a break. I still have my old Nokia N95 8GB from when I lived in Europe and that phone was very ahead of its time with a great 5MP camera (with carl Zeiss lens), HSDPA, front facing camera, good browser and tons of other smartphone specs that made the first iPhone’s specs looks horrible. But it sucked for one major reason, T9 keyboard! Ugh, no wonder they suck now!

    • keridel

      please dont say things like that about europe. we are innovative.

      in nokia’s defence they have tried and tested and invented every form factor a phone as ever had including some really awful ones! (i had a phone that looked like a pear) but i can see where he is coming from on the looks front. the chocolate block form factor is now the standard smartphone and apart from a few slight changes they are all pretty much the same. however the reason for that is it is the best shape for a phone!!

      their fault was not to see the trend towords smartphones early enough and then to back wp7.

      had they had thrown their lot in with android then things would be a lot better for them and the rest of the world.

      • http://Website The_Omega_Man

        The company is European but Elop is Canadian. Hmmm so is RIMM…. I am seeing a trend here..

  • http://Website Was better qualified than you!

    Two losers who are over the curve, and getting together to make a winning combination. In all such exercises the smaller loser gets hurt badly! Someone will ‘Elop’e by the end of the year, or whenever the product comes out, whichever is later…..So delay and collect your perks.

    • http://Website Rainai

      You mean a “wining combination”…

      • http://Website Rainai


  • http://www.ironroad.com/vmsmanager/WhatisVMS.aspx Video Blogging

    Nokia will soon be making Windows Phone devices, which allow for even less differentiation than Android…….. Lets wait and watch.
    Can NOKIA do a better business than ANDROID
    video blogging.

  • http://Website Mark

    Who cares what this has been has to say?

  • http://Website Achraf

    Omfg the Looks are getting different and if you dont like how they act you just root it and get a custom ROM like cyanogenmod or something

  • http://punmobile.net punzz

    nokia will fall with winmo…..

  • http://www.devolute.net devolute

    He’s totally right.

    I think it’s a testament to the crappyness of Nokia software that even with well built, well designed hardware, their phones are ignored.

  • http://Website Joshua

    I haven’t seen somebody with a nokia phone in forever, lol. Why do they think they are still relevant enough to say anything?

  • http://Website E2K

    The reactions prove that you are just a bunch of noobs.

    Here is the reality though:
    Wordwide, for every year, including this year, Nokia sold more symbian smartphones than every android manufacturer sold android phones, combined.
    Read that again a few times until you understand what that means, and look it up.

    I’ll agree that in the current state, Android is better than Symbian, everyone who has used both will know this. Still Symbian outsold Android.
    This tells me that 100.000.000′s of people just want to buy a”Nokia” (smart) phone.

    Now imagine what happens if those 100.000.000′s of Nokia smartphones sold every year, all run WP7. WP7 will have an enormous market share in 2012 and onwards. It already has better apps than android, thanks to better SDK, although google is going to be improving this, but it will receive quality games and apps.

    I believe that WP7 is better than Android. Android is just a iOS ripoff, with a few extra features, implemented poorly or broken in most cases.
    WP7 was built from the ground up to be better, efficient, more efficient to use. Although it needs market share right now.
    Looking at the apps though, (Facebook android versus WP7 for example) it is already better, thanks to superior SDK.

    But you noobs could never acknowledge this, you’re only here to circle-jerk about android ;-)

    • http://Website chris

      I’m quite certain you won’t call yourself a noob because delusional fanboy fits so much better.

    • http://Website Username

      I would like one plane ticket to whatever planet you live on and also some of whatever you’re smoking.

    • http://Website George

      And what when the loyal symbian fans discover the flaws of WP7. No file management, sideloading, bluetooth file transfers. How many loyal fans will follow nokia towards an OS that is in some terms inferior to symbian. Nokia being lazy and incompetent has just helped Android grow.

    • http://Website Bill

      I think it’s cute that you use periods instead of commas to denote place holders. So, I’ll just read it as I would have read it otherwise: hundreds of Nokias, hundreds of Nokias per year. Compared to thousands of Android-enabled devices per day.

      Also, I’m curious as to what AMAZING apps are on WP7. Angry Birds? Nope delayed. Dungeon Defenders? Nope. Infinity Blade? Nope. HAY GAIZ UR FB APP SUX IN COMPARE TO MAUN. I think it’s cute that you taut an OS that is made by a company that allegedly defines mainstream computing, but are in such a small percentile that FreeBSD users actually laugh at you for using such an obscure OS.

      Weak troll, by the way; you should have gone with “Nokia is laughing at Android because Metro looks better than Sense.” At least that would have been ascertainable. Which, by the way weighted blocks are oh so original. I think Egoraptor did something with that about five years ago though.

      • http://Website Matthew H

        The commenter is from Europe, where they use periods instead of commas to denote placeholders between the thousands. I live in the US, but am well traveled enough to know they have a different standard. Of course, being in Europe and staunchly defending Nokia does lead one to hypothesize that they are a Nokia employee.

    • http://Website Micah

      Here’s a simple flaw in your logic. Android has been gaining market share, meanwhile symbian has been losing market share. Android gained A LOT, nokia lost A LOT. This doesn’t happen if symbian is outselling android.

  • http://Website Paul

    Im sorry but he is a prat he is talking about Windows 7 as you cannot change the home screen & Android you can custom. If I was a share holder & would insist he is saked NOW.

  • http://Website Toha

    Its easier to talk then work!
    I had lot of Nokia phones…. and they still make good products even if the software is little bit behind….but Nokia do your home work!

  • http://Website Droidfan

    Alberto has nailed it. His points are the very reason that Android is on FIRE right now. In dozens of different ways my Droid X is different from all other Android users phones. And yet, it functions across the Android ecosystem.

    Alberto’s remarks also underscore the reason for WP7′s poor sales. OEMs’, and carriers by extension, have very little motivation to push WP7 phones. Consumers have shown a general indifference to the phone. And I believe its directly related to the UI. MS has made the WP7 and walled garden phone, ala iPhone. If you want a phone like that your going to choose an iPhone. The phone offers very little in the way of visual customization compared to an Android phone. So if that’s your thing your going go with an Android choice.

    Nokia made a huge mistake by not choosing to offer Android and WP7, while continuing to develop there own Meego OS. Android would have given them a quick offering to stabilize the Asian and European markets. WP7 would have left the option open for the future. And Meego would have left the possibility of a truly unique phone down the road.

    The only option for both Nokia and MS at this point, is for MS to go all in and buy Nokia and try to run the table on Apple.

  • http://Website Darkseider

    What’s a Nokia? At least that’s what all the younger generation is asking nowadays. If it isn’t an HTC, Moto, LG, Samsung or iPhone anyone in their late 20′s and under have no idea what Nokia is or what they make.

  • http://Website Michele

    He continuously talk about one and another. Despite android phone doesn’t look the same (look at the hardware, look at the launchers, look at custom roms), Nokia WP7, they DO look the same! They are simply nonexistent. One exactly equal to the other one. Start talk about your NOTHING Elop and, please leave Finland. Soon.

  • http://Website Dave

    I think at this point Elop is just trying to put down Android because he realized he’s made a big mistake by going with WP7. I mean, last week there was a graph floating around that showed WP7 dive bombing and Android climbing in popularity. So it’s pretty much desperation at this point from Elop.

    Side note: Love the picture in this article. There are several terrible captions that come to mind…

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  • http://Website jose36

    nokia sucks with windows phone.

  • http://Website Average

    I thought nokia is a car company…

  • http://Website Pixar

    God what a sad bunch of brainwashed fanatics. Elop makes a fair point and you all piss your paints. Get a life! It’s just a phone os. Not your mother he’s talking about. Does Goggle pay you guys with free Google ads to be such pansies? Or does it come naturally?

  • http://Website eretromicin

    the only mistake nokia made is moving away from meego… yes, symbian is a crappy system, but their open source(for the most part) devices were astonishing…. i just got a G2X after using n900 for about a year…even though that n900 ran on maemo 5, that system was far superior to the android on my G2X…level of customization was beyond anything android has ever seen (tried a few roms on my bro’s evo and they were embarrassing to say the least)…not that i’m hating on Android, it’s quite an awesome system….after using maemo it seems….. “regular user” friendly XD…but to really understand what nokia is capable of (or at least was prior to the MS deal), get an n900…anyone who dares to hate on nokia before trying n900 for a week is an ignorant fool…nonetheless, i’ll keep my G2X =p

  • http://Website Kai

    hi guy, will it possible that Elop is actually hinting something different? Maybe he is trying to pass a message to Google that Nokia expects a platform allowing them more freedom to modify code to make them look different from other handset maker, just like what they get from MS.

    Nokia will not join Android unless they feel they can make himself looks distinctive from other.

  • http://Website zeo

    Hey wait, all iphones look exactly the same and act the exactly the same way. Uh…so how’s this critical of anything? If he’s trying to diss Android he needs to think a little harder.

  • Steve J

    I’m sorry but there are only a few droids that look different. Unscientifically I’d say about 90% of the droids look the same. Boring lame ass design.

  • http://androidvssymbian.com/ symbian os or android

    You can definitely see your enthusiasm in the work you write. The sector hopes for even more passionate writers like you who aren’t afraid to say how they believe. All the time follow your heart.

  • Stephen

    Let Talk Facts and not SPECS…. Ever wonder what status does Linux enjoy in present world…???

    ANDROID: Myth: Life Saver, Fkin Incarnation, Next Gen OS with Customizations, Open Source, Awesome SPECS >> In reality Utter Crap, Highly Unstable, Loads of Bloatware (thanks to Wide Customization), Most Sought After Resolution to every Problem = Root It (and void warranty), Near everyday Launch of some Android Device (seems more likely to cope up with its existence), Similar look and feel (apart from SPECS)…. Crazy Tech Geek Morons (who are infact Desolate aliens) trying to justifying how cool is Android.

    WP7/iOS >> Myth: Loosing Battle (with Android ??? LoL), Locked OS, Not much customization >> In reality: Much more Stable, Does perfectly what it is supposed to do, Locked OS means better reliabilty/performance and next to zero bloatware/malware, Highly Streamlined to run in full glory.

    I would personally like a phone which doesn’t shows me a Dick and crashes everytime I want to do some resource hungry task. I give a damn about what the Specs are… If there is a Quad-Core, Quad SLI GPU Android Device which crashes, It would would be a piece of junk for me…

    Also, just out of curiosity, Let me ask one thing >> With this glorified customizabilty of ANDROID, I am yet to encounter a Phone which looks visually stunning at first glance… They all look ugly as Shit….

    Good Luck with ur Android Brick… Be Wise and Not Utter Morons… Cheers !!..

  • Humpty

    Dinosaurs don’t change. They die.

  • Ddawg

    Well Android there isn’t enough room in the market for your substandard phones, not with the iphone and Windows lumia. If it wasnt for Apple and Google’s unethical acts there would be no Android…..and the world would be a better place!!!!!

  • Anand

    Hey? Where are you guys who ditched nokia now? 3years before when this post appeared, you all guys have underestimated nokia. Now nokia stands the 1st in the industry, alot higher than all the android phones because nokia earned the trust of the people long before these android running phones even didnt emerge. That is nokia, it connects people, nomatter what, they have given the smoothest handset ever. Windows lumia series on win8.