It looks as though the burning platform has finally turned to ashes as Nokia confirm that they’re done with making Symbian devices.
The Nokia 808 PureView was a mind-blowing handset when it was unveiled last year, but it wasn’t really the mobile experience that turned heads, it was that much talked about 41-megapixel camera strapped to its back. The PureView runs Symbian Belle; one of the most complete and up to date iterations of the OS, which although trying to take on the likes of iOS and Android, has never had the clout is functionality or app support to be truly competitive.
The decline in Symbian’s worth to Nokia might have been steadily increasing as the smartphone market changed, but their switch to Windows Phone was a significant factor in accelerating the end of their Symbian love affair. The company are now stating that their done with their Symbian efforts and instead intend to focus on new endeavours going forward, this is their official line on the matter:
“With no new Symbian phones after the Nokia 808 PureView, we expect to gradually transition to essential software maintenance in support of existing users until at least 2016. “
In the last quarter of 2012, Nokia stated that they sold 2.2 million Symbian-based handsets, accounting for just 14% of the total volume of smartphones sold, whilst their new top OS; Windows Phone accounted for double the number of sales in the same time frame. It wasn’t that long ago that Symbian was the smartphone OS of choice and as stated by TechCrunch, it held the top spot in the smartphone OS game until 2011, where it was overtaken by Google’s Android.
The arrival of Apple’s iPhone and the launch of Google’s Android served as the the catalyst for Symbian’s downfall, but it was Nokia who weren’t able to bring the platform to consumers in a way that it maintained its integrity. Instead the last version of the OS was borrowing features from Android, not the other way around as it should well have been. As the official line states. Users with existing Nokia Symbian handsets should be covered until 2016, but after that it really is curtains for the OS, where it’ll be confined to the history books as potentially the first major mobile operating system that made the smartphone ‘smart’.