Sorry to put the question bluntly, but is Microsoft taking Nokia’s destinity in hand?
Microsoft is always talking about the ecosystem they want to create around their software, always forgetting to mention ‘and we are at the end of the food chain’. With Microsoft on board, is a Nokia device still a Nokia experience? Is the customer a Nokia customer or a Microsoft customer? 18 months ago my answer would have been a strong yes. Who controls the software controls the user experience.
But today I believe the one who controls the app store controls the User Experience. To sell a device, you need first a nice hardware in terms of design and specs, secondly a nice OS with some wahoo UI features for the user to show off with his device.
What makes you really a long standing customer are the services and applications you can get from the application store. In this respect, Nokia-Microsoft alliance seems more balanced. Ovi services will be integrated into WindowsPhone application store. To keep its customer base Nokia needs to make OVI services experience on WP7 fantastic.
Let’s hope for Nokia that the governance of the application store has been smartly negotiated. If not, it will put Nokia in great danger.