COMMITTED to up their game in the mobile phone market, Finnish phone brand Nokia targets to be the top 3 mobile phone player globally in three to five years’ time.

Nokia, a brand known largely by Filipinos, is now under the ownership of the HMD Global. This time, Nokia’s direction is to regain the market share it once had in the mobile phone market by introducing an Android-focused strategy for their smartphone portfolio.

HMD Philippines country manager Shannon Mead told Davao reporters on Wednesday, December 6, that to achieve its global goal they should focus on creating a portfolio that is built with the consumers in mind.

Unlike other brands, Nokia need not to introduce itself to the market as it is already known by many. It is “everyone’s phone” back in the day while others are still struggling to enter the market.

However, with its lack of innovation and marketing, Nokia experienced dominance fall making its global market share down to nearly 0 percent in 2013. The once mobile phone giant has a lot of keeping up to do to compete with the existing mobile brand leaders.

“The market has changed. Well, we don’t need to introduce the brand as some new players should but what we need to do is writing the next chapter. It is a brand that is usually identifiable, but it may not resonate with the old demographics, the way people buy and consumed changed, so it is no longer enough to just run a print ad or TV campaign,” he said.

Mead said that with their re-entrance, sustaining the features Nokia is known for and tapping into the nostalgia brought by the brand to the users are important.

“Tapping into that nostalgia has been an important start to our new journey,” he said adding that this is the main reason why they reintroduced the redesigned 3G version of Nokia 3310.

“We laid these (New Nokia 3310) to ensure that the people remember the brand and remember the fun and memories attached with the phone,” he continued.

He was quick to add that after the release last June, an overwhelming market response has been noted.

“That actually overwhelmed us, the response highlighted of how much affection and connection still is with the Nokia brand. We underestimated how much brand recall there actually was in the brand. It exceeded our initial forecast,” he shared.

However, Mead underscored that they still has a long way to go to regain its position in the global and Philippine phone market.

During the roundtable discussion, Mead introduced Nokia 3, Nokia 5, Nokia 6, and Nokia 8-- all running on the world’s most popular operating system, Android.

“Obviously our strategy perspective, our main focus now is Nokia on Android, our smartphone portfolio,” he said.

At present, Nokia released four smartphones in the Philippines, the Nokia 3, 5, 6 and its flagship unit, Nokia 8. The Nokia 7 is only available in China while Nokia 2 was released first in India and will soon be rolled out to other markets.

HMD Global has partnered with cellphone dealers and retailers to serve as distribution channels for the Nokia Android series.

In Davao, Mead said he had talks with four local cellphone shops for the distribution of Nokia Android smartphones in their respective outlets.

“We will be rolling out more Nokia-branded kiosks and stores with different local partners. In 2018, we make sure that we will have relevant engagements with the different communities through involvement in fiestas, festivals and other events,” he said.

Just yesterday, December 8, Nokia had a mall activation at SM City Davao as a part of its nationwide mall show. The event will feature Nokia Android phones which are on display and up for sale, in time for HMD’s first anniversary as a company. The Davao event will run until Sunday, December 10.

Now that all its smartphones will be running Android, Nokia phone series offers customers a pure, secure and up to date experience.

“Nokia smartphones will be in pure form of Android with no pre-installed app, you are getting the experience Google intended,” he said.

For the security perspective, Mead said security updates are available regularly which means the users will be able to get the latest version of the security patches.

As for its operating system upgrade, Nokia smartphone devices are currently on Nougat, Mead said adding that the Nokia 8 is running on Oreo.

“We need to prove to them the reason why they should rejoin us with the new journey with us. We are optimistic because Nokia has positive memories with consumers. We, Nokia at that time, never really failed, we just kind of just exited, we didn’t innovate, we stop marketing and we kind of just slip away, but no one really had a negative experience with the brand that is why it is a lot easier to reconnect. But of course we need to prove ourselves that our new portfolio is worthy for customers,” he said.