Congratulations on the N97! It’s a very exciting product, but great devices alone don’t make you a leader.
So what is really needed for the Nseries brand to succeed? Here are my thoughts…
This is where you rule. You are the leader in making devices optimized for content creation. Be more aggressive. Decrease time to market, with simultaneous worldwide launches.
The N97 is a step in the right direction, but you need a bunch of different Nseries devices with touch, some without keyboards.
Get rid of resistive touch screens. Capacitive is the future (and the present). You already have capacitive (?) green “start” and red “end” call buttons on the N97. Capacitive does not preclude writing recognition.
One word: multitouch.
You need an 8 megapixel device (if only to keep up with the competition). You need cameras with both Xenon and LED flashes. You need to add auto-focus to video recording. What about optical zoom? HD video recording?
All Nseries devices should always feature an active lens cover.
Short term: S60v5 is a step in the right direction, but the UI is inconsistent. Fix that.
Pay attention to the details that make the user experience so much better. Like gapless music playback (no break between live tracks) on the iPod/iPhone.
Look at what Apple is doing with he mobile version of OS X (especially the UI), Cocoa Touch, and the Developer Connection. Look at what Android is doing (again the UI) and the Android developer platform. Learn. Take the best of both.
Here’s a radical idea. Embrace Android as an optional OS for Nseries devices. Add a full Bluetooth stack to it…
Open source everything.
Look at what Apple is doing with the iTunes Store and the App Store ecosystem. Look at what Android is doing with the Google services integration and the Android Market. Learn.
Download! died, came back as a zombie and died again :) Start an app store from scratch, and integrate it with the Symbian developer platform. Do it now!
Nokia PC Suite is crap. Your Windows/Mac software is horrible in general. USB mass storage and Bluetooth have you covered. Forget about the desktop/laptop. It’s all about the “cloud”. Focus on mobile sync and mobile content delivery. Establish standards.
Follow Google’s lead. Beta everything (but make sure it works). If a service already exists and allows it, integrate with it at the OS level: Google, Twitter/Jaiku, Flickr, Youtube/Qik, Facebook, etc…
Put a lot of money into it. If you can’t put a lot of money into it, partner with Google (cf. radical idea in point #2 above).
4) Final thoughts
Microsoft is dead. RIM is in trouble.
Stop underestimating Apple. They may be huge in the US and tiny in Europe/Asia but they are wily and they will grow further. They are the #1 Nseries competition. Problem is, they are optimized for content consumption, and they are closed…
You are open. You “get” the blogger community (unlike anyone else). Use this to your advantage.