Stephen Elop says Nokia "planning exciting things with Verizon" in CNET interview

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CNet has published a wide ranging interview with Stephen Elop. Many of the themes are familiar, such as the importance of location, the culture shift that Nokia has undergone, and the need to "move with more urgency". However, there are also a couple of nuggets worth highlighting. 

When asked about the Lumia 920 exclusivity in the US market Elop says that there "might be another similar hero exercise with a different operator" and goes on to add that "we are planning a lot of exciting things with Verizon as well". Elop is also asked about how the Lumia 920 is doing, "we're certainly pleased", is the response, which doesn't give much away, though Nokia's CEO does add that there is "excitement in the sales organization, although there's frustration due to limited supply".

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Here's an extract from the CNET interview:   

Why is the Lumia 920 an exclusive on AT&T? Don't you want to go after as many customers as possible? 

One of the things we had learned with the first launch was being very narrow would yield better results for us...

If you get a concentrated effort, you get far more parallel investment and cooperation. As we did the assessment, we came to the conclusion that working with them from the start would yield the best results.

There might be another similar hero exercise with a different operator. In this particular moment, the opportunity with the Lumia 920 presented well with AT&T. And we're pleased to have just restarted our relationship with Verizon. We are planning a lot of exciting things with Verizon as well.

Thinking about recent media coverage of Nokia more generally, this interview seems to be part of a wider trend that has seen Nokia portrayed in a more sympathetic light. In part that's a by product of the Windows Phone 8 launch, backed by generally favourably reviews of the new Windows Phone 8 products, and what appears to be healthy consumer demand for the Lumia 920 and 820.

However, the idea that Nokia is doing something different and is innovating in design and product features also seems to be a recurrent theme. The usual caveats about sales and ecosystem (apps) still very much present in conversations about Windows Phone. But, compared to a constant series of stories about falling share price, profit warnings and job losses, recent media coverage has been more positive.

Perhaps it is an early sign of a more general shift in perceptions? In terms of strategy nothing has really changed at Nokia in the last six months, it's just the company is a little further down the road in terms of execution.

Source / Credit: CNET