Merger seen as the solution to ailing sales

Nokia told to ditch MeeGo in favour of Windows Phone 7

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop has been advised to ditch MeeGo in favour of Windows Phone 7.

In an open letter to Elop, Adnaan Ahmad of investors Berenberg Bank wrote: "Get rid of your own proprietary high-end solution MeeGo – it’s the biggest joke in the tech industry right now and will put you even further behind Apple and Google."

Nokia has focused on developing their own operating systems, Symbian and MeeGo, whereas competing vendors like Samsung and LG have adopted Google’s Android.

This follows Monday’s news that Android had overtaken Symbian to become the world’s most popular mobile OS in Q4 2010.

The sales difference was relatively slim – Nokia still sold 31 million Symbian handsets, 1.9 million less than Android – but Nokia lacks presence in the West, where Apple and Android handsets are preferred.

WP7 has received glowing reviews but lacks support from vendors, who are opting for Android’s open-source benefits. Analysts fear the new Microsoft platform has too much ground to make up in an already crowded market. The figures support this view – WP7 only accounted for 5 per cent of the handset market last Christmas.

Nokia are still the world’s favourite smartphone manufacturer, taking a market share of 28 per cent last quarter, so a potential deal could be a match made in heaven.

Ahmad seems to believe so: “Two million units shipped in the last quarter is not really much to write home about, given $500 million in marketing programmes, but with Nokia on-side, you get access to a potential 20-25 per cent global share over time – and exclusivity.”

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