Oh Nokia, We Loved You So...

Nokia, we invited you into our house. We let you put your feet on the coffee table.  And yet this is how you treat us? Heck, we even tolerated the resistive screen on the N900, because it was a full blown Linux computer. We even put MeeGo on the cover of our March issue, and now you decide to defect to the dark side? Oh, Nokia...

As many of you know, today Nokia announced that they've abandoned Linux, and partnered with Microsoft for their future phones. While current Linux based phones (Like our own Kyle Rankin's N900) will continue to identify with freedom, any future offerings from Nokia will be all Windowsy. For those of us interested in Linux based handsets, our choices have been seriously decreased. Android is great, but competition within the Linux community is great too. Competition often sparks innovation. Sadly there's little we can do but weep. Well, that and look for another hardware vendor to love.

Oh, and Nokia? Breaking up with the Linux community 3 days before Valentine's Day is just tacky. You still owe us dinner and a movie.


Shawn is Associate Editor here at Linux Journal, and has been around Linux since the beginning. He has a passion for open source, and he loves to teach. He also drinks too much coffee, which often shows in his writing.


Comment viewing options

Select your preferred way to display the comments and click "Save settings" to activate your changes.

To be honest, I gave up on

DropDigger's picture

To be honest, I gave up on Nokia such a long time ago. The last time I really loved one was my old 3310! Since then I moved on to and loved Sony Ericsson - until they started getting all 'camera or music' obsessed. I don't use my phone for either. So I finally settled on Android. It's not perfect, but it does the job - it's a phone that can browse the web and do social media stuff.

I do occassionally gaze longingly over to the dark side - where things are shiny and beautiful - but then I ask to borrow an iPhone and remember why I like my Android.

Maybe, this time they can

ygs lys's picture

Maybe, this time they can success! may be..

ygs lys

When I replace my Nokia, I'll

JRZ's picture

When I replace my Nokia, I'll just give it to someone so they won't have to buy one of the MS models and find myself a replacement brand that doesn't use MS. Nokia will lose 2 sales.

Bye Bye, Nokia.

Why not try HP's WebOS? The

Power ixir's picture

Why not try HP's WebOS? The homebrew project is thriving, and there is a lot of new hardware being released this Spring and Summer. The Pre2 running WebOS 2.x is also now available on Verizon, or you can get an unlocked GSM version.


Anonymous's picture

I think too this is another step forward for Microsoft while a big step backwards for Nokia. Every company I remember of making business with Microsoft have resulted being seriously injured in very little time.

I always liked call recording features, for quickly storing directions for example, since my Motorola A780 (Linux powered), now broken because of a very strong strike and obsolete anyway.

Later I bought (sadly) a Windows Mobile 6.1 one. Dammit, it couldn't record calls, and worse, trying to backup my phone contacts and calendar led me to lose everything I wanted to backup because of a faulty software design, and now I feel uncomfortable using it.

For my next phone I looked at iPhone, Android, WP7 (sadly) and Nokia's. Because I wanted call recording functionality more than other things, I thought the Nokia's would be my best choice, because they still remained as an alternative.

Now I'm not sure if I should buy Nokia..., truly, even with call recording, because of this movement.

On Nokia, and how the slaves can revolt

Anonymous's picture

Shame on you, NOKIA!!! I'm getting so angry that I'm founding a competitor to Nokia to fill the niche that was lost.


Cell phones in general

Anonymous's picture

Don't have one
Never had one
Don't want one
Don't need one
Prefer not to risk getting brain cancer
Prefer not to risk, damaging my sperm
Prefer not to be tracked like a wild animal w/gps
Prefer not to waste money, wasting time.
Dont care to have an electronic leash
I'm not paranoid about being unavailable for a few hours.
I have no separation issues
I have no use for them
We were fine before them, we will be fine w/out them
don't waste your money making yourself dependent on a device you have no control over
What's the big deal? I couldn't care less what nokia does.
When you have to have something at any cost, you will always loose. and someone will always control you.
Feel the fear and do it anyway. Dump your cell phone!

nokia - mobile phones

Paul7's picture

I fit woodburning stoves for a living so I meet a wide range of people. A recent customer turned out to be a radiographer who stated rather casually when asked about the dramatic rise in brain tumours that "oh its just mobile phones".

I now tell my customers 2 things (stoves aside) 1.Mobile phones give you brain tumours. 2. DONT USE WINDOWS - have this disk its called Linux and its allllllll freeee (mint)


cell phones in general

Glen Pate's picture

I would have had use for a cell phone when I was working in an ambulant hospiz care team many years ago, but no such thing had been heard of in Hamburg (Germany) so we got by with a municipal paging (peeper) system. Since changing my activity there was never an occasion when I would have considered using one, unless someone offered me a very substantial hourly retainer.

There is nothing like

TomH's picture

There is nothing like hitching your wagon to a dead horse. So sad Nokia


JS's picture

I have had Nokia phone several years. E71 was just great. Just purchased N8 last fall, and what a disappointment! I have had several issues with duration of battery (depleted over night with power saving turned on and no running software..), answering the phone (black screen when calling..) etc, basic stuff that should be working. I also spend considerably much time testing different options, updating firmware and software and just trying to investigate problems of this phone. After awhile of updating and researching I´ve got fairly reasonable results and at least I can work with this phone, but still few major flaws persists. I also reported faults to Nokia and got the basic response: "too bad.. nothing we can do, maybe next update will fix the problem". So basic M$ response there already ;)

So as you can see, this news was a bit bitter sweet one. On other hand, I`m glad Symbian is old news, since many of our work applications will undoubtedly work well (or should we say better..) in MS product(fingers crossed) and since I´m using my personal phone as a work phone too, this is good news. Bad news is that I already decided to switch phone brand after experiencing Nokia N8.

I hope they reconsider their

Anonymous's picture

I hope they reconsider their position and add an android phone.

The business side of me sees their logic. Since Apple has been unable to pursue businesses to use their phone on corporate networks, Microsoft would be a better fit since most corporations have Microsoft exchange servers and have Microsoft trained technicians. And yes I will use the word, there are "synergies", by using one platform to service your customers, the corporate road warrior.

AT's future

Anonymous's picture

Without the Nokia financed devs working on QT who is going to
take up the slack in QT development and support?
The KDE organization? Better find the answer to this
question, or it's lights-out for KDE.....

Microsoft startedthe push of

Carpe Ligo's picture

Microsoft startedthe push of the Unix movement (XENIX) to the Enterprise market, before anyone had even thought of Linux. They were THE company that did it first, in the 70's....


Anonymous's picture

How about LiMo? It's Linux platform for mobile.


Nokia Plan B: An open letter to Nokia shareholders and instituti

micu's picture

¡¥€ÆĦ! There IS some movement:

> We are a group of nine young Nokia shareholders. All of us have
> worked with Nokia in different capacities in the past. We plan to
> challenge the company’s strategy and partnership with Microsoft in
> the next Annual General Meeting scheduled for May 3, 2011.


Nokia Plan B on

Anonymous's picture

I wanted Maemo too...oh well

lamapper's picture

I was suspicious when they did not port over the 500+ apps for the Nokia N800 to the N900 or at least most of them, prior to its release.

Than they started talking about MeeGo instead of Maemo...another warning flare...

All the time Symbian devs put down the GTK / QT dev environment which I had just started learning about back in 2007, thanks to SCaLE 7x.

Shameless plug: SCaLE 9x is Feb 25 - 27, 2011 in Los Angeles and only costs $70, for a 3 day Linux / open source / FOSS conference. Most conferences at this level cost closer to $1,000 or more. Check it out.

The final warning flare was when Nokia pushed the NXX in spite of the newly released Nokia N900 and hired a Microsoft executive as their CEO. My guess is Microsoft had invested in Nokia and that in and of itself prevented the expansion, innovation of the Nokia NXXX platform and Maemo/MeeGo.

Game over for Nokia from a Linux perspective, their loss and mine.

Will I stay with MeeGo even with Intel pushing it...thinking about Intel's involvement with Microsoft in the past makes that less likely...kind of lost my trust there Intel. Of course Nvidia has scorched my trust from a GPU ~ Linux perspective as well and where else are you going to go for GPUs besides those two?

Now if I can find an open, root accessible, non-proprietary chip-set android "smart" handheld device than thats where I will be.

As for tablets, the Kno looks promising!

Bye Nokia.

I left Telcos for Skype VoIP, Cable for Internet, guess its your turn...your loss and ours.

Dinner, and

Anonymous's picture

maybe even a proprietary plug, but please bring an adapter.

QT and Meego

JA's picture

Nothing wipes QT away. The licence keeps it alive if it goes down to that.
Meego project is controlled by the Linux Foundation and they own the trademark too. Intel has bigger plans for Meego than Nokia had.

Greetings from Finland btw. Fortunately I'm not a Nokia dev. And I sure as h*ll wouldn't want to work for a company that's run by a herd of sheep.
There are rumors that north american investors insisted Elop as a CEO, (first non-Finnish CEO ever). If so, that's where this deal comes from. I don't blame Elop though, he's just a Ballmers' lapdog. It's the board that let this happen, because they have no backbone or because they're so rich they don't care.

Bye Nokia

crueztnick's picture

Thank God I switched already my heart to android. Be they're coming from samsung, lg, motorola, or any china vendor, long as it's android, and so we go. Put my Nokia away and se here we go with android...


alar's picture

I swear I only hit save once... ;-)


alar's picture

So long old friend... some great years...

Hi what's your name?
Sony Ericsson?
Pleased to meet you. =)

Yeah, goodbye Nokia (after

Anonymous's picture

Yeah, goodbye Nokia (after many, many years) hello HTC and Android.

but what about my KDEz???

xazero's picture

QT is relatively safe thanks to the KDE free QT Foundation.

But, if nokia discontinues QT and then it gets forked/BSDed, i doubt the community could innovate/contribute as much as nokia has been doing.

I dont want to see QT (and KDE, again) die at hands of Micro$oft!

I hope intel would buy QT...

As a KDE user im very disappointed and concerned, I used to buy nokia cellphones only because they where doing great with QT.


Put my Nokia trash 8)

Antonio's picture

Put my Nokia trash 8)

I'll never buy a Nokia

Anonymous's picture

I'll never buy a Nokia cellphone now

I've had enough of his crap!

Antonio's picture

I've had enough of his crap! Go to trash! 8)

I was planning on putting my

Toni's picture

I was planning on putting my money on a Meego-smartphone.. Thanks to their timely announcement, I guess I'll redirect my funds somewhere else than into the vaults of MicroNokia :)

I have been using Nokia cell

Anonymous's picture

I have been using Nokia cell phones since 1998, and I was planning on purchasing a N900. But now my next cell phone will not be a Nokia. This Nokia-M$ deal is rather frustating, but we still have alternatives such as Android and, possibly, webOS. I only hope this unfortunate deal will not affect Qt development. As someone else said, forking Qt and incorporating it into KDE sounds like a great idea.

Almost seems like...

Andrew Prough's picture

Almost seems like ... the two dinosaurs deserve each other???

I can hardly think of two companies with less relevance moving forward in the smartphone sector than Microsoft and Nokia. Seems like with this announcement they're gleefully running off a cliff together hand-in-hand

And, as to all this hand-wringing about the lack of a full-blown Linux distro on the phone - look, I like my Linux box very much, but I don't need a full version of Red Hat or Slackware or Ubuntu on my phone. I need a bunch of mini-programs, or "apps", or whatever you want to call them. I want my email, a fast mobile web browser, my calendar, and the ability to make calls. Snapping photos and GPS are nice little additions, but I can live without them, because I, like most people, own a GPS and a camera.

That's it. I don't need to edit documents, or edit video, or watch Youtube on my phone. If someone is going to shove Linux onto a phone, they better scale it down so it fits and it works well and it works fast. Something like Android.

I agree

Anonymous's picture

I totally agree, I like Android. It does exactly what I want and never gives me any grief. However, I do like my GPS and Camera integrated because my other GPS was too old and never offered voice support, and I never have my camera on me 24/7 like I do my phone. Having them all in one package offers a lot less cluttered in my car on long trips and when I'm playing music, my music automatically stops when I need to hear a direction from my GPS! BRILLIANT!!!

You did not make them money.

Anonymous's picture

You did not make them money. You did not prevent them from become an also ran "oh, they still make phones" third tier company that only does well in the 3rd world.

Why SHOULD they give a fig about you being "sad" they "defected to the dark side"?

You were a cheap date, you never called back the day after, and they dropped you like a bad habit. Get over it.

Right, let's look at the

Carlo Broglia's picture

Right, let's look at the money facts then.

- The financial market loves the announcement. How much did the Nokia stock go down on Friday? 10%? 11%?

- Windows Phone does not sell. Is it because of the hardware it runs on? I think Microsoft has all to gain from the agreement, but Nokia has a lot to loose. Now they compete with Taiwan manufacturers, same mediocre OS.
Symbian needed some work but it is still pretty good.

- Microsoft Kin, a success story.

> The financial market loves

Anonymouses's picture

> The financial market loves the announcement. How much did the
> Nokia stock go down on Friday? 10%? 11%?

Shares of Nokia Corp. plunged $1.48, or 13.6 percent, to $9.40 during Friday 11 afternoon trading.

Maybe the fact that they

Anonymous's picture

Maybe the fact that they didn't ship more than /one/ Meego device might have had something to do with it.

Ugh, why does Steve Ballmer

Anonymous's picture

Ugh, why does Steve Ballmer remind me of a greasy monkey? Every time he talks I hate him more. I just hear animal noises when he opens his mouth.

In some point, I think that I

Fernando Carvalho's picture

In some point, I think that I is a good thing to happen, because there is already Android and WebOS on the market.
Meego would be dead if it go forward.
Windoze Phones are to compete with Apple and not to the lower and mid range Androids, because WP7 is more expensive than Androids.
There are plenty of misinformed people that only knows Apple and Microsoft and they would buy only phones from them.
With more competition on the Apple side, Linux based phones could become stronger.
I think about this as if I'm playing a Real Time Strategy game with 3 players. In this kind of game, I make everything possible to get my two opponents fighting and when this happens, I strike both on the battlefield and win the match.

Which is why going WP7 is still a bad idea.

Anonymous's picture

"Windoze Phones are to compete with Apple and not to the lower and mid range Androids, because WP7 is more expensive than Androids."

PRECISELY WHY Nokia shouldn't bet the farm on MS.Simply because it's not their forte to begin with.Lower S40 and S60 devices were (and still is even if that day is numbered now) key to Nokia's current market numbers.

If hardware-wise I were to criticize Nokia for being slow footed a'la RIM on the consumer front, for being unwilling to go for more updated and current SoCs and/or other specs for select models then why should anyone trust Nokia NOW to flip that coin just because they're making this WP7 switch?

United We Stand

metalx2000's picture

When I heard this earlier today I was very upset.
I hate to say it, but not only could we have prevented this, but we would have a number of newer and better Linux Phones out there if more Linux users supported Freedom. If Linux users stopped settling for watered down distros like Android and bought N900s I believe it would have make it worth Nokia's time to put more effort into moving Meego along.

United we stand.
Divided we fall.

Everything you ever need to know about Free Software.


crlsgms's picture

indeed. As meego promissed to be the new linux os the goal for us linux fans to be fished on this new step was inclined to be bigger. Just check out this tiny cover on the right, with meego 1.1 on the cover, and the magazine content for itself.

I an a nokia user for quite some time, cel phones here in brasil (and service too) are WAY too expensive, for now i have an e63 and happy with it, can use mirggi for irc, putty for ssh issues, SIP to use my voip ramal at work... just went to the store today to "date" with the future e72, but for now I will rethink my new acquisition, since the only difference for me from the e63 to the e72 was the gps.

N900 was a dream, my 82' car worth less then the phone here, so I passed.

Shame on nokia, let us hope some indian crazy timeless programmer comes with some hack we can buy any cell and install our on OS as we like, and dont be locket up to this married sells as hardware+software we fight for quite some time.


Chris Bruner's picture

Any thoughts on the future of QT and by extension kde?
Should QT be forked and become part of kde?

Same question here.

Anonymous's picture

Yeah, what about Qt? Any idea?
What is its legal situation, in relation to its use by/in/with Linux/FOSS in the future?

I wouldn't fret. Did you see

cbleslie's picture

I wouldn't fret. Did you see the Nokia walkout? I think some of the employees are on our side.

Interesting, sounds like

Carlo Broglia's picture

Interesting, sounds like somebody has more sense than the CEO in the company.
Can you give me a pointer to the video where the employees walk out?

Looks like Microsuck bought

Anonymous's picture

Looks like Microsuck bought out some more of their competition like usual. Too bad it won't save them since the ball is already rolling on the Linux machine. What other portable device manufacturers using Linux are they going to bribe? All the companies making big bank off Android? Google? HP? I think HP invested too much money in buying palm to just ditch the OS. This was a majorly bad move for Nokia as every time I hear people talking about buying a new phone I have NEVER heard anyone say they want the new windows phone, not even my Windows and Microsoft loving bubby (who has an Android phone and loves it to death).

Linux Options...

Anonymous's picture

Why not try HP's WebOS? The homebrew project is thriving, and there is a lot of new hardware being released this Spring and Summer. The Pre2 running WebOS 2.x is also now available on Verizon, or you can get an unlocked GSM version.


Good Point

Shawn Powers's picture

You bring up a good point. I hope WebOS becomes "something." I'd like to see other Linux options as viable alternatives to Apple, Google, and Microsoft.

Shawn is Associate Editor here at Linux Journal, and has been around Linux since the beginning. He has a passion for open source, and he loves to teach. He also drinks too much coffee, which often shows in his writing.

If WebOS is Linux based why

Anonymous's picture

If WebOS is Linux based why isn't it open source? Isn't using Linux kernel and keeping it "closed" technically illegal? or am I just misinformed completely...