At an event in London today, the handset giant unveiled Ovi ('door' in Finnish) as an umbrella service for its music, games, mapping and internet offerings. “We are now in the business of delivering experiences and services,” said Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo, Nokia’s CEO.
Ovi will offer music downloads and streaming across mobile, PC and other devices through the Nokia Music Store - a clear claim on the market dominated by Apple's iTunes. It will also integrate the forthcoming N-gage gaming platform, which has been confirmed to go live in November, and which will support the discovery, purchase, sharing, trialling and playing of games.
The launch was supported by the announcement of many new content-led devices. The Ovi flagship is the N81, an 8Gb Nseries device that features a new user interface called the Experience Suite, which has similar touch-screen functionality to Apple's iPhone. Nokia also revealed two new Xpress Music handsets, the ultra-slim 5310 and the slightly higher spec 5610 slider. They have 2 megapixel and 3.2 megapixel cameras respectively.
Kallasvuo added: "The industry is converging towards Internet driven experiences and Ovi represents Nokia's vision in combining the Internet and mobility…we started this journey with our navigation services earlier this year and we are now combining all our services into a single branded offering - Ovi by Nokia. Over the coming 12 months, you will see us integrate new user interface elements, service suites and web communities to Ovi.”