Nokia is not a new name in the world’s mobile industry. It is infact one of the oldest name. A rough statistics have it that 5 out of 7 phone owners in Nigeria alone owns or have once owned a Nokia phone that is about 70% ! This is demonstrated by the fact that only few designated shops sell Android, Blackberry and iPhones. Many big cities in Africa can’t boast of a single phone store that sells an iPhone.
All my life I have used about 8 different phones ranging from Samsung R220 to java, Windows phone(s), a blackberry and an Android. Of these phones, I have never owned a Nokia phone! I have never been trapped into their strategic nets though I have written extensively on mobile devices at my personal Mobile technology blog Mymobnet!.
Here are top reasons why the developing countries and Africa must prefer Nokia:
1. Affordability: There are many rich people in developing countries, but unfortunately they make up to a low percentage of the population. Nokia understands this very well. The bulk of their phones are so affordable and many can be tagged low-end. The price of Nokia phones start from as low as N2,500. Nokia reserves little of their phone brands like the Pure view and Lumnia for the few rich people.
2. Battery life: Many developing nations still battle with infrastructure and power. When I was in Nassarawa state Nigeria, a British visitor hastily took out his digital camera to capture people struggling for a charging space in one public building. Today many phone manufacturers has built phones that can last long.But this is coming late because Nokia has since the days of the 3310 convinced its customers that it has the tricks. The people are so convinced that any Nokia brand that fails the battery test are said to contain fake Nokia battery even if the phone is shipped from Nokia Hungary factory!
3. Operating System and features: Unlike Blackberry and Apple iPhones, Nokia is known for installing varieties of OS notably Symbian and Java. Many mobile users in the developing world are not techie in nature. Many phone buyers care nothing about the RAM, ROM, speed, connectivity and so forth. In my unpublished survey, I found out that the average Nigerian phone buyer need a phone that has a Camera, Music and video player, internet (not minding if it supports only GPRS), bluetooth and radio. Those who claim they need a quality phone go for just Nokia and resist China wares except Tecno. Those who love apps go for Nokia Symbian devices and only very few try other OS.
4. Durability: Nokia phones are generally durable. It works even after it falls from a storey or when it falls into a basin of water, only some cleansing with spirit is needed. No economic user will like a phone that lasts less than 2 years.
5. Availability of spare parts and Technicians: Because Nokia is the most popular phone in the developing world, the importation and sale of Nokia phone parts are at its peak here. Africa isn’t like the UK where one’s iPhone or Android can be fixed by a professional technician. But the damage of a Nokia is certainly not a problem here.
Without these 5 reasons I enumerated, every third world market would have been filled with high-end gadgets like iPhones, tablets, Androids, Windows and Blackberries.
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