The Finnish national public media Yleisradio (YLE) news has interviewed Mr Eldar Murtazin, the owner of the Mobile-Review.com site. Murtazin claims Nokia is ”betting on a dead horse” by giving up MeeGo and Symbian and moving to Windows Phone 7. YLE reports Murtazin said Nokia is ”clinging to a system with a smaller market share”. The original article was in Finnish, and the report was broadcast yesterday evening on YLE TV1 headline news. The article is also available in English.
Many analysts somewhat disagree. For example research company Gartner has estimated Windows Phone will get a 20% market share by 2015, ahead of Apple iOS with 17% market share, but clearly behind of Google Android with the estimated 48% market share. While visiting to Helsinki in June 2011 Research VP Carolina Milanesi from Gartner said Nokia would represent 90% of Windows Phone shipments by 2015.
Nokia responded to YLE news Murtazin is not an objective party, because he would have admited himself to consult Nokia’s competitors. According to YLE news, Nokia also has requested the Russian police to investigate Murtazin about his product leaks. Murtazin says product leaks have only increased, because Nokia’s staff would not satisfied with the new management of CEO Stephen Elop.
Murtazin is famous for leaking information and pictures of future Nokia’s and other vendors’ smartphones even before they have been announced. He has also previewed and reviewed devices before they are shipping. For example, Murtazin reviewed (article translated into English) Nokia N8 already in spring 2010, many months before it would eventually ship.
Murtazin argued N8 would not bring such a big improvement to the Symbian user interface Nokia was promising. Back then Nokia’s executives, such as CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo and senior executive Anssi Vanjoki were saying N8 would end discussion of Symbian’s user interface problems. Now we know Murtazin was pretty much right. Nokia N8 finally shipped in the end of September 2010, many months late. Improvement in user interface was smaller than Nokia had touted.
Today, almost 11 months later, Nokia N8 users are still waiting for the Symbian Anna update to Symbian 3 which would improve the user interface and performance. It’s supposed to become available by the end of August. Having tried Nokia E6 and X7 with Symbian Anna, I know the update is not revolutionary, but just a small step ahead.
Murtazin told YLE he has seen Windows Phone prototypes from Nokia. Earlier Murtazin wrote they would be manufactured by Compal, not Nokia itself.
Murtazin also claims in the interview made in Moscow that Nokia can not bring anything new to Windows Phone 7 platform, and could not modify it for their own applications and software.
This is a surprising argument, since even President of Microsoft’s Windows Phone division Andy Lees said in Mobile World Congress (MWC) in February during the Q&A of their press conference Nokia would be allowed to make modifications to WP7 and add their own software to it. However, Nokia is not supposed to change the basic user interface so that there will remain a common Windows Phone user experience.
However, Nokia’s CTO Rich Green told in an interview in MWC that at first their focus would be to get Windows Phone smartphones to market as fast as possible, and later they would bring more enhancements to the offering. When I interviewed Rich Green again in April, he hinted Nokia is planning big things especially in area of new material technologies.
Many wonder if Murtazin is a credible source. I’m not quite sure about that, but I think he has lost a large part of his credibility since he seems to have been on some kind of a personal war path against Nokia. Murtazin himself then again claimed YLE news Nokia has declared him as their ”enemy number one”. In any case, this situation decreases his value as a source at least from a point of view of professional journalists.