Telefónica manager claims Nokia Windows Phone is too expensive

By Tom Warren, on 7th Nov 11 1:08 pm with 35 Comments

Nokia Lumia 800

Nokia’s range of smartphone devices are “too expensive” according to Telefónica’s European general manager.

Simon Lee-Smith, European general manager for devices at Telefónica, revealed his feelings in an interview with recently. Lee-Smith told that Nokia’s premium devices are “not yet at the right price point,” adding: “If Nokia wants to sell in volume, they need to bring out devices which are cost-competitive.” He also touched on Nokia’s differentiation tactics across its high-end Windows Phone and Symbian devices. “All device manufacturers seem to think that a €400-plus device is the norm. Well, it isn’t. Customers and operators won’t pay that cost for a device which doesn’t differentiate sufficiently.”

Lee-Smith’s comments seem to confirm earlier reports that Telefónica’s UK arm, O2, was not interested in Nokia’s Lumia 800 device. Reports in September indicated that Nokia dropped O2 as a stockist for its first Windows Phone devices. Sources close to O2 and Nokia claimed that the Finnish manufacturer has some strict requirements for carriers to stock the upcoming device, including marketing campaigns and store displays. O2 was reportedly reluctant to agree a deal ahead of Apple’s iPhone 5 launch. Nokia CEO Stephen Elop allegedly attended a dinner in the UK on Tuesday September 13 alongside all UK operators apart from O2. Nokia’s Lumia 800 device is not being stocked at O2 as a result.

Telefónica’s commitment to Windows Phone as a whole has been somewhat lacking. The company was the final carrier to test and approve the Windows Phone “NoDo” update and is still testing the Windows Phone “Mango” update for its Samsung Omnia 7 devices.

  • Leo

    Ridiculous. It’s cheaper than most of the competition.

  • Diego3336

    I agree with him. €400-plus for a Single-core and No FFC device is suicide. Even Apple with the bunch of iSheeps that buys anything they launch without ask is doing more than just a nice design.

    • Anonymous

      apple didn’t include NFC :)

      as for dual cores, you need to understand 99.9% of apps do not use them. thus you’r epaying for dual cores only for 0.1% of the time. the best bang for the buck remains single thread performance, thus single core performance.

    • phil jay

      When I’ll write an WP7 app, I’m gonna shedule and switch on threads like crazy! Well, I’m probably not going to need it as normally you only need some async data access and then bind to the ui. When thinking about it how WP7 does multitasking(apps are getting paused), it isn’t that important then, multiple cores would probably mostly come to shine when running the browser. It could also improve general performance, if the phones core and controls would be optimized for it. Maybe games could profit also.

    • Diego3336

      I said Front-facing camera. About the dual-core CPU, I agree with you, but neither MS nor Nokia are in position to offer less for the same price these days, and if even Apple has jumped in the dual-core bandwagon, it’s time to MS/Nokia do the same or start selling for less.

      And we need to remember that today dual-core CPU may be not necessary, but how about tomorrow? In the meantime of a 2-year contract everything can change…

    • Anonymous

      that’s what people said about dual core and now quad core CPUs in pcs. How long did it take games and apps to start using the processing power? Not very long. There are still many pc programs that don’t need the power. However, people still buy the latest processors because some programs do need it and more will need it in the future. Bottom line is that Nokia is using less expensive hardware and therefore should charge less than a handset that uses the latest tech.

  • Pepe

    I’m Spanish and I say: f*** Telefonica.

    • Joe_HTH

      Yes but it does go to show how badly Elop has handled the transition to WP7 with carrier relations and how much MSFT has lost favor with them over the years.  They are showing no desire to support the platform.  

      It takes more then cool phones and good OS to be successful the Carriers have to want them to succeed, neither Nokia or MSFT has been good partners in the past and we are now seeing the by product of that poor partnering.

      It is a real shame and I blame Ballmer and Elop.

  • notgoodenglish

    I agree

    much lower price than other os products is right decision. at least, now

  • Anonymous

    I kinda agree with him, wp7 devices are made on last years secs but they still priced the same a current android which have a more impressive specs sheet.. but come on you didn’t take the phone so stfu and stop trolling 

    • Anonymous

      NFC which nobody uses, dual cores which 99% of apps don’t utilize. spec wars are back to the usual “pointless marketing”.

    • Anonymous

      You are right. 

      But you should also know that these have costs. They put these expensive parts coz that’s how they will market them. It sounds much better in ads if you say “this phone has dual core 1.5Ghz”. It does NOT matter if applications actually need that power. 

    • Anonymous

      reminds me of the ghz race intel and AMD long deciced it was a foolish thing to do. now the “cores” race.

    • J A

      Well, perhaps laggy Android needs dual cores which they get and yet still lag.

    • AiienSix

      It is about being innovative, the market leader not eternal follower as MSFT and many of the reader here are happy with.  

      It is ok to like the products but to have higher expectation from crappy management at Microsoft and Nokia.

  • Anonymous

    not forgetting NFC and low memory 

    • Anonymous

      wp7 has excellent memory management. paying more for more memory is pointless.

  • Andrea Barbera

    Pretty awsome phones like the HTC Radar or Samsung Omnia W can be found around €330 contract free incl. tax here in the Netherlands. That’s a very competitive price compared to other handsets, even the lower-end Android ones. What is this guy complaining about, the sub-€400 handsets are already there, and with the Nokia Lumia 710 coming it will get even crowdier in that segment.

    • Anonymous

      he is taking about Nokia specifically. However, the article does mention that the company’s “commitment to WP has been lacking”.

  • Koki_v3

    Telefonica has always been and always will be a coward. They never take any risks. It’s easier for them to just not include a phone in their portfolio rather than promoting something new and awesome as Windows Phone is. FFS they’re not even offering the new iPhone 4S in my country because they were afraid they wouldn’t sell well and didn’t want to accept Apple’s conditions. I used to work for Telefonica and this is exactly what I expected from them. Screw them.

  • Anonymous

    the reason they are expensive is because when you buy an android phone, telefonica will never update it, or care for it ever again :).

  • Kulwinder Singh

    Amazing Telefonica They are using Azure & Lync for all of there 220000 Employees. I think they love windows phone but they want the price of Android like the same one is getting sold in india. 87$ including Taxes Micromax Andro A60…
    Telefonica For this price range 87$ you get fragmented devices and once bought forget about updates and yes all applications run in android lol i guess no it NEVER worked

  • Tim

    O2 really is disapointing with there WP7 offering in the UK. They had the HD7 which was awesome, but now seem to just be letting the stocks run down and stop offering anything. While at the same time Carphone warehouse and Phone4U who origionally didn’t have any WP7 devices have actually started.

    I may have to change to another provider when I next change my phone. A shame really because O2′s service has been good, but if there not offering the phones it leaves little choice.

    • Anonymous

      i remember i got my HD7 from O2 but SIM unlocked it cos i had a better SIM only deal with T-Mo.
      It’ll be a shame if they wont be stocking WP7.

    • Anonymous

      Switch to SIM only and then buy your device. Total freedom of choice and an upgrade cycle of whatever you want it to be.

  • Norville2

    No disrespect but i have noticed the Spanish carriers charge considerably more then most of Europe. Why?

  • Norville2

    Left o2 after  buying my HTC HD7 and got a sim only deak with 3, i felt o2 where getting more expensive and giving less minutes,

  • Abhimanyu Jamwal

    agree, no front facing camera, no extra ordinary memory or processors, no NFC, no LTE, (blame it on microsoft), and you price it close to the top end of the mobile segment, copeteing with big boys from android and iphone4S …….only means, you start as the worst in the pack

    • Guest

      You forgot to put - no lag as android - to you list.

  • Anonymous

    “doesn’t differentiate sufficiently”…I think he means that this isn’t an iPhone…

    So Nokia ‘s device is expensive because nokia is known for cheaper phones in the past, well, its the new millenium and this is a smart phone, just like the iPhone and Android…
    or are they claiming that iPhone & Android are smartphones and this Nokia device is a phone…or a feature phone for that matter…
    utter nonsense….TYPICAL iFANISM….

  • Jubbin Grewal

    That carrier is rubbish anyways, looks how sow they are to update their phones. Good ridance I would say if they were dropped too.

  • Antonio Raga

    I see Telefonica has, among its products, the € 799 iPhone, sold from 239€ + subscription.
    They are hypocritical.

  • Alex H

    Well I just ordered my Lumia 800 yesterday here in the UK… and had to switch my contract from o2 to a competitor. Well done o2! How about you let *ME* decide whether it’s too expensive…

    • Jay

      Strangely for them, O2 seem to be last in offering the second wave of WP7 hones across the UK networks. Even Vodafone have got onboard 

  • Anonymous

    I would have a *little* more respect if Telefónica just came out and simply said, “we’ve bet the company on everything to do with the iPhone and there’s no headroom or indeed shop floor space for any other premium smartphone maker or competing OS”.  All the rest is absolute illogical nonsense.  Why try and hide behind price points – are they serious??? 

    The iPhone is subsidised to death because of its premium pricing and unfortunately, o2 are in too deep contractually to escape from it so offer weak, delayed and nonconstructive explanations whilst trying to pay lip service to consumers.