UPDATED – Nokia to make Android Phones in 2016!

Nokia has just published a statement on its official company website claiming that it has “no intention to manufacture or sell consumer handsets”. Furthermore, the company also deemed as false recent reports that quoted a Nokia executive as confirming the company’s ambitions to manufacture smartphones out of an R&D facility in China.

Earlier this week, a couple of reports suggested that Nokia is staging a comeback to the smartphone market. The initial report, published on Monday by ReCode, quoted sources familiar to Nokia’s plans according to which the company is planning a return to the smartphone market in 2016. A few days later, a Chinese newspaper quoted Mike Wang, the President of Nokia China, communicating an intention to to manufacture smartphones in the Chinese city of Sichuan.

Nokia’s recent statement doesn’t specifically make any mention to plans of designing smartphones in the near future. The statement only mentions that the company has no plans to sell or manufacture consumer handsets, and this specificity leaves room for interpretation. ReCode originally reported that Nokia will licence smartphone designs to third party manufacturers, which is exactly what the company did with the Nokia N1 tablet, a device designed by Nokia, but manufactured and commercialized by Foxconn.
Nokia is bound by its deal with Microsoft not to release any Nokia-branded smartphones until the third quarter of 2016. We’re keeping an eye on the situation and we’ll get back to you as soon as there’s more to report.

Recently we heard rumors about alleged Nokia plans for re-entering the phone market in 2016. We are happy to report those plans are indeed true and Nokia will be marking its return next year with an Android smartphone.

Nokia sold its device business to Microsoft a year ago and it signed a non-compete clause preventing the company from producing smartphones under the Nokia brand until December 31, 2015 and feature phones under the Nokia brand for a decade.

nokia-lumia-930

Nokia used wisely these non-compete clauses and outed the powerful Nokia N1 tablet early this year. The N1 is designed by Nokia, including its Z Launcher for Android, but the rights for the branding, manufacturing, marketing and distributions were licensed to Foxconn.

The President of Nokia China confirmed Nokia is working on Android powered smartphones, which will be probably manufactured in factories in Sichuan, China (after further assessment) and will be launched in 2016. He also sheds some light on company’s future – the Nokia’s R&D center will permanently relocate to Sichuan, China.

Looking forward to Nokia’s next phone chapter? We certainly are.

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