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Nokia promotes 3D printing for mobile phone cases

January 14, 2013 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Customer Service, Dr Search, mobile phones, Nokia, Search Clinic, smart phones, Telecommunications Companies, Uncategorized

Nokia is releasing design files that will let owners use 3D printers to make their own cases for its Lumia phones.Nokia promotes 3D printing for mobile phone casesFiles containing mechanical drawings, case measurements and recommended materials have already been released by the phone maker.

Those using the files will be able to create a custom designed case for the flagship Lumia 820 handset.

The project makes Nokia one of the first big electronics firms to seriously back 3D printing.

In a blogpost, John Kneeland, one of Nokia’s community managers, revealed the Finnish phone maker’s decision to release the 3D drawings.

Printing in 3D involves sending a design file to a printer that then forms a solid version of that object by slowly building it up in layers of plastic. Early 3D printers could only work in one colour but the latest versions can produce intricate, multicoloured objects.

Mr Kneeland said Nokia was releasing what he called a “3D printing development kit” to help people produce the cases. The files are already available on the site Nokia maintains for its developers.

He said 3D printing was another way that the firm wanted to build links to that vast community of software and hardware engineers. To get the files, users must have registered with Nokia.

He said Nokia already used 3D printing internally to do rapid prototyping, but decided to back it more publicly to help the nascent technology realise its “incredible potential”.

In the future, he said, 3D printing was likely to bring about phones that were “wildly more modular and customisable”.

Nokia might just end up selling a phone template, he said, allowing entrepreneurs to use that to produce handsets that satisfy the particular needs of their locale.

“You want a waterproof, glow-in-the-dark phone with a bottle-opener and a solar charger? Someone can build it for you – or you can print it yourself,” he wrote.

He added that, in his view, 3D printing was a technology that justified its hype and said it was “the sequel to the Industrial Revolution”.

“However, it’s going to take somewhat longer to arrive than some people anticipate, and that may disappoint people,” he said.

Nokia launches it’s own streets map to battle Google and Apple

December 07, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Apps, Computers, Customer Service, Dr Search, mobile phones, Nokia, smart phones, Technology Companies, Telecommunications Companies, Uncategorized

Nokia has launched it’s own Maps service after a user-backlash led Apple to apologise for the quality of its iOS6 Maps update.Nokia launches it's own streets map to battle Google and AppleThe Finnish firm quickly capitalised by beating Google to the release of an app in Apple’s iPhone and iPad store.

Giving away a product that cost millions of dollars to create to owners of a rival’s products might seem like an odd business decision, but behind it lies a critical point.

If Nokia’s 25-year-old mapping business is to survive the evolution from dedicated sat-nav systems to smart devices it needs to secure as much feedback data as it can.

That means attempting to woo smartphone and tablet users with a series of innovations.

You can already see a hint of the importance of feedback data in the colour codes Nokia uses to show which streets are suffering from busy traffic. It does this by taking anonymised GPS and movement readings from users’ phones and other Nokia-powered sat-nav systems to work out road conditions.

Its upcoming Living Maps feature aims to take this a step further by colour-coding areas according to each user’s leisure tastes.

The unit traces its roots to Barry Karlin, a South African immigrant to Silicon Valley who had the idea of a computer mapping solution after becoming lost while driving in the area in 1984 and finding the large map he owned unwieldy to use.

In 1987 he launched DriverGuide – a printed door-to-door driving guide sold from kiosks which was targeted at rental car drivers in San Francisco.

Over the following years the company changed its name first to Navtech, then Navteq and for a time came under the control of Philips.

But after research costs mounted, the Dutch company decided go in a different direction and by 2004 the business had been floated on the New York Stock Exchange with a valuation of about $2 billion (£1.2 billion).

Its public status proved to be short-lived when Nokia announced it wanted to acquire the firm in 2007. It paid $8.1 billion for the privilege the following year.

Nokia already powers the default map apps on Windows Phone handsets, Windows 8 computers and Amazon’s Kindle tablets.

The True cars are fitted with a range of sensors including high-precision cameras and an inertial measurement unit which measures the slope of each road – a feature which could allow trucking companies to identify the least hilly routes in order to cut fuel costs.

But the critical feature is a rotating sensor called Lidar (light detection and ranging) which uses 64 lasers to capture 1.3 million points of digital information every second of each vehicle’s journey.

“The lasers bounce off any reflective surface that allows us to capture lane markings [which use reflective paint], it shows us the exact location of road signs and it also allows us to capture the world in 3D,” explains Mr Fox.

“That’s the primary purpose… we are able to create at street-level a digital representation of the real world.”

While Google’s Street View offers panoramic photos, Nokia intends to offer a computer-created graphics-based version of the planet by combining Lidar-collected data with colour information gathered by panoramic cameras.

The advantage, Mr Fox suggests, is that Nokia can offer a highly-detailed depiction of the environment to pedestrians, but a less distracting version to motorists.
6,366 people are employed by Nokia’s location division.

Nokia shares rise despite reporting losses results

October 26, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Apple, Google, mobile phones, Nokia, Search Clinic, smart phones, Technology Companies, Uncategorized

Nokia shares have risen sharply in Helsinki despite reporting another set of company quarterly losses.Nokia shares rise despite reporting losses resultsThe mobile phone company reported a net loss of 969 million euros (£787 million) for the three months to the end of September, compared with a 68 million euro loss in the same quarter last year.

But the shares rose 9% as the results were still better than the money markets had being expected.

The Finnish company’s sales were down 19% from the same period last year.

Nokia was the world’s leading mobile phone maker for more than a decade, but has struggled in the face of competition from Apple and Samsung.

Its third quarter results were boosted by record profits from its telecoms equipment company, Nokia Siemens Networks.

Nokia is releasing new Lumia 820 and 920 phones next month, which will use Microsoft’s latest Windows 8 software.

The forthcoming quarter is going to be tough for its smartphone business due to the release of the new Windows Phone 8 operating system.

It will take a couple of quarters to ramp up Windows Phone 8 volumes due to the competitive landscape- with Apple’s new iPhone and Google’s new Motorola also being launched.

The introduction of Windows smartphones has been the big change under chief executive Stephen Elop, who phased out the Symbian operating system shortly after he took control of the company in 2010.

Nokia launches key Windows Phone 8 smartphone

September 05, 2012 By: Dr Search Principal Consultant at the Search Clinic Category: Customer Service, Ecommerce, internet, Mobile Marketing, mobile phones, Nokia, smart phones, Technology Companies, Uncategorized

Nokia has unveiled its first handsets powered by Microsoft’s Windows Phone 8 operating system.Nokia launches key Windows Phone 8 smart phoneThe flagship device – the Lumia 920 – features wireless charging and a “PureView” camera which the mobile firm said offered better video and still images than rival smartphones.

Its New York press conference comes in the midst of a number of other smart phone launches.

Samsung has already shown off a Windows Phone 8 device, and LG and Sony have also recently revealed their new top-of-the-range Android mobiles.

Apple, Motorola and HTC all have events planned over the next three weeks creating extra competition for Nokia as it heads into the busy winter holidays shopping period.

Key features include a Snapdragon S4 processor, a 4.5in (11.4cm) curved screen, and can be used while wearing gloves.

Nokia’s new smartphones feature all kinds of impressive technology from a company which has always been an innovation leader in its industry. From the augmented reality City Lens app, to wireless charging and the PureView camera software, Nokia is promising consumers that its Lumia 920 will deliver better experiences than is available on rival smartphones.

Before another executive unveiled the new phones, chief executive Stephen Elop made great play of Nokia’s success in delivering affordable mobile phones to the developing world and in pushing forward with new technology.

But he knows that it’s the main plank of his strategy – winning market share from Apple and Android for his Windows Phone handsets – which is crucial to the company’s future.

If the new Lumia fails to win over smartphone consumers, then Nokia will have a troubled time ahead.