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March 6, 2012

Nokia to shut down Ovi share on May 30; Nokia 808 PureView's users left in lurch

Nokia has announced that its Ovi Share service will be discontinued. Users will have time till May 30 to retrieve their content but uploads will no longer be possible from March 13. This move not only signals a move towards Windows services, but could also signal Nokia's strategy in using Windows as the OS even for low end phones.
Move towards Windows services
Moves like this have been long expected as Nokia transitions towards having Windows as its major smartphone OS. Windows Live services are already included as part of Windows which includes Skydrive, a service heavily promoted by Microsoft. 

With this closure, Nokia will further cut costs but will also increase its reliance on Microsoft.

Nokia 808 PureView — Any reason to buy?
We had earlier stated in an article on Nokia 808 PureView that while the phone is great, it is not a smartphone and only those looking for a camera phone should consider it. This news gives further credence to that.

Right now there is not a single native app supporting sharing on Symbian, who will have to resort to using web apps. Neither Nokia nor Microsoft has so far committed to release Skydrive or any other app for Symbian, leaving Symbian users in the lurch.

Also do not expect any major app release for PureView — If Nokia cannot support its own OS, no one else will.

Closing Ovi sharing also puts a huge question mark over future Symbian phones. Nokia had previously stated that lower end phones will continue to run on Symbian. But if the support from Nokia will get progressively lower, Symbian users will be limited to only web apps and some of the bundled apps, which will make Symbian even less exciting, if that's possible.

Way forward for Nokia
The closure Ovi share, while phones like Nokia 808 are still being launched, might point to the strategy Nokia wants to follow. Nokia could look to completely move towards Windows, even on lower end devices, a move which was made possible by Microsoft with the recently released Tango update

We think that might be the best move for Nokia, to shift all its resources to one platform, design great Nokia quality hardware around the OS and once again become a force in the mobile world. Tall ask, but considering the brand value that Nokia still enjoys among loyal users like me, but doesn't effectively use, it is definitely possible. Here's hoping that Nokia's strategy of moving towards Windows pays off.

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