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  • Blog, Gadgets - Written by on Wednesday, July 24, 2013 14:19 - 14 Comments

    Nokia’s supersized Lumia 625 hits Oz;
    But does it even matter?


    blog We can’t help but wonder at this point whether anyone will truly care, given the existing proliferation of Nokia Lumia models in Australia, but seeing as it’s our job to do so, we thought we’d inform you all of the availability of a new model in the Lumia line down under. Nokia tells us this morning that the company’s Lumia 625 is shortly to land on Australian shores from “leading retailers”, with Telstra and Optus Business getting the model at the end of August and Virgin Mobile from early September, with a RRP of $399. The 625’s specifications:


    On paper, the 625 looks like an excellent model for anyone seeking to get into the Windows Phone 8 ecosystem. The model has 4G support, a large screen, a decent CPU, and it comes with Windows Phone 8. Hell, it can even take a 64GB SD card, for those of you out there who are sticklers for such a thing. However, we can’t help but wonder whether Nokia is flooding the market with too much choice.

    Delimiter has recently reviewed the Lumia 620, the Lumia 820, the Lumia 920, the Lumia 610, the Lumia 900, the Lumia 710, the Lumia 800 and the Nokia N9. Plus, we’ve also got the Lumia 925 incoming, and perhaps the Lumia 1020. The situation reminds your writer a little of the following quote about Apple’s product proliferation in the 1990’s, taken from Steve Jobs’ biography:

    The company was churning out multiple versions of each product because of bureaucratic momentum and to satisfy the whims of retailers. “It was insanity,” [Apple marketing chief Phil Schiller] recalled. “Tons of products, most of them crap, done by deluded teams.” Apple had a dozen versions of the Macintosh, each with a different confusing number, ranging from 1400 to 9600. “I had people explaining this to me for three weeks,” Jobs said. “I couldn’t figure it out.” He finally began asking simple questions, like, “Which ones do I tell my friends to buy?”

    Everyone knows, right now, what the iPhone is. There’s only one new model, the iPhone 5. And everyone knows what that the Galaxy S4 is Samsung’s flagship smartphone, and that there’s also a bigger version, called the ‘Note’. Likewise, HTC is focusing its efforts on the “One”. But when it comes to Nokia, there are about a billion versions of the company’s Lumia line, and while to me it’s pretty obvious which ones which customers would be interested in, because I’m a professional reviewer, I don’t think it’s obvious to customers at all, and it’s definitely diluting the ‘Lumia’ brand name.

    I’d like to see Nokia come out with just two new smartphones every year, or perhaps nine months. One flagship model, like the iPhone or the GS4. It would have the best camera on the market, phenomenal design, awesome build quality, and great in-built Nokia-branded software to cover Windows Phone 8’s shortcomings. And one smaller model, suitable for those with smaller hands. A lot of people can’t handle 4.7″ screens. Does anyone think the company really needs more models per year? I’d be interested in your thoughts.

    Image credit: Nokia

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    1. Dan
      Posted 24/07/2013 at 2:58 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Couldn’t agree more with the sentiment of the article here. Nokia has been doing this since the 90’s with their phones. At one point they were virtually all the same guts with slightly different key layouts or SMS features, slightly smaller or larger, and slightly better (or worse) battery performance/options.

      One would think there was something to be learned about what Jobs did to Apple; it’s not like it is a secret.

      • Simon Reidy
        Posted 24/07/2013 at 3:41 pm | Permalink | Reply

        Agreed. This piece is spot on. Why waste time saturating the market with bucketloads of average devices when they produce Lumia phones as well designed as the 925/1020? The main reason Nokia is still relatively popular is because they have a reputation for building quality hardware, so they are not doing themselves any favours by attaching the Lumia name to a bucketload of forgettable plastic phones.

        The WindowsPhone 8 ecosystem is obviously still sorely lacking, so given there is nothing appealing about the hardware, there is zero reason to buy a cheap Lumia, when you can get a decent Android device for the same price. The only thing I’d put in WP8’s favour at that price level is lack of latency and smoothness of animations. WP8 does seem to run better on lower end hardware than Android, but the vast majority of people wouldn’t notice or care. Not when you have access to so many great apps on Android that are still missing on WP8.

      • jo
        Posted 25/07/2013 at 2:24 am | Permalink | Reply

        I almost completely disagree with this article and the above comments.

        The views you hold would be great if Western markets (especially Australia) comprised all smartphones sales but they contribute a constantly declining slice of the pie. The high-end of smartphone sales is very saturated and its extremely hard for anyone to break through it. Sales growth for this end of the market is flat lining and for any company, especially Nokia, to think they can do without low and mid-end offerings is kidding themselves. (note analysts continued calls for Apple to release lower-end devices, the fact that Apple’s sales are increasingly comprised of sales of older models and Apple’s declining marketshare – though sales are overall growing)

        Also, in Australia due to our sheltering from the effects of the GFC and high Australian dollar, we have been able to afford high-end smartphones, both on plans and outright. Even in western Europe this isn’t the case and low-end phones and budget offerings are very popular and frequently feature in best seller lists above high-end phones.

        Also Renai, the Lumia line of phones is the same as Samsung’s Galaxy. There are far more models in the line than the S4 and Note. (Duos, Grand, Mega, Ace being the most popular but there are others) The important matter is they all run Android (or in Nokia’s case WP)

        Also, ever notice how many iPods there are? Its similar for phones. Apple might only produce one but their marketshare is decreasing and older models are continuously making up more and more of their sales. Its about streamlining your offering and also targeting specific markets which is what Samsung has done very well and Nokia is doing.

        “Delimiter has recently reviewed the Lumia 620, the Lumia 820, the Lumia 920, the Lumia 610, the Lumia 900, the Lumia 710, the Lumia 800 and the Nokia N9. Plus, we’ve also got the Lumia 925 incoming, and perhaps the Lumia 1020.”

        Nokia N9 – not Windows Phones, released September 2011
        Lumia 610, 710, 800 and 900 – 1st gen Windows Phones from Nokia released from November 2011 to Apri 2012 targeting different price groups
        Lumia 620, 720, 820 and 920 – 2nd gen Windows Phones from Nokia released from November 2012 to April 2012 targeting different price groups
        Lumia 625, 925, 1020 – 3rd (2.5th) gen Windows Phones from Nokia released from June 2013 onwards addressing customer’s feedback on previous phones and starting to target market niches and react to emerging market needs or ones they’ve failed to address previously.

        The first gen phones have almost entirely been discontinued around the world except where their respective 2nd gen devices are yet to be released. 920 has been discontinued in countries where the 925 has been released. Nokia’s current Windows Phone offering is 520, 620, 720, 820, 920/925 with the 625 and 1020 just added/announced. Nokia is definitely not flooding the market with too much choice. Its simply addressing various markets and their unique needs.

        “The main reason Nokia is still relatively popular is because they have a reputation for building quality hardware, so they are not doing themselves any favours by attaching the Lumia name to a bucketload of forgettable plastic phones.”

        Before simply labelling them, read the reviews. Nokia has managed to give to produce strong build quality on all phones its released over the past 9 months (i.e. every new Nokia Lumia device regardless of price as well as all the other cheaper offerings) They are not attaching the Lumia name to a bucketload of forgettable plastic phones. Also, Nokia’s phones offer a similar smooth experience at the high end to low end so its definitely not diluting the Lumia name as long as they can keep this up.

        “WP8 does seem to run better on lower end hardware than Android, but the vast majority of people wouldn’t notice or care.”

        Maybe not in Australia but in markets where phones are bought outright and $200 is a lot of money, they certainly notice as indicated by the huge number of sales for the Lumia 520 (costs ~$170 in Australia).

        Also, anyone believing Apple will still do well with just the one high-priced device, clearly you’re not aware that the reality distortion field died when Steve Jobs passed away.

        The one area I could possibly agree on is the matter of the 625. It is definitely out of order in the line up and I think its more a reflection of their up coming offerings which are rumoured to include larger-screened “phablets”. I actually find it perplexing for it to be released in Australia so quickly but clearly our operators are really optimistic about the offering. I feel this will be very popular in Western Europe as a budget 4G device and especially in India in amongst the other large screened 800×480 resolution which cost the same yet offer a poorer user experience and battery life. Nokia has actually managed to kill two birds with one stone by offering 4G because without 4G it is really only good for markets similar to India’s.

        Nokia is a global brand addressing all the different markets around the world. You can’t do that with 1 phone. Apple did not do that with 1 phone. You could get close with 3 priced at different price points but even then you might still miss a couple. Nokia needs to maximise its sales. This is the perfect way to do so and I am just as excited at this offering as I was when the 520 was released which is driving Nokia’s sales back towards the 10 million mark. As long as this is released soon enough overseas, ~9 million sales next quarter is a fair possibility (up from 7.4 million this quarter which in turn was an increase from 5.6 million in Q1 and 4.4 million in Q4).

        Also, I wish someone would offer a 2-pronged attack at the higher end with a smaller 4-4.3″ device and a larger 4.7-5″ device but I fear this may never happen. Many people have called for it but no one seems interested (yet).

        • jo
          Posted 25/07/2013 at 2:26 am | Permalink | Reply

          And to think I was going to go to sleep early tonight…. -.-

        • PeterA
          Posted 25/07/2013 at 8:14 am | Permalink | Reply

          Great post.

          So its really just ~4 phone models on a yearly (or longer) refresh cycle.

        • stoffs
          Posted 25/07/2013 at 11:50 am | Permalink | Reply

          + alot of 1’s

    2. Rich
      Posted 24/07/2013 at 5:29 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Back in 2000 when Nokia were claiming a 50% market share (and at least in Australia they really had more like 80%) they had 7 distinct product lines for phones, with variants of most of them.

      Now despite having a Flagship model (or two) Samsung have released how many phones in the last ~year? For the sake of argument, let’s look at anything cellular (that can make phone calls) including tablets – and cameras! … GSMArena shows around 100 devices.

      So perhaps while Apple choose minimalism and Samsung go the scatter-gun approach, Nokia could successfully choose either, or maybe it would best best if they chose somewhere in between.

    3. Posted 24/07/2013 at 7:21 pm | Permalink | Reply

      Vodafone was the last 2 rollout 4G yet won’t offer the 625 on prepaid but they did offer the low-end 610 on prepaid.

    4. Posted 25/07/2013 at 2:09 am | Permalink | Reply

      You can say it is a good trend from Nokia to introduce large screen mobiles, but it is not as good like Samsung Galaxy S4 and HTC One because mostly people comparing this with them. It has many issues like low RAM, Poor Screen Resolution and many other things. While the other competitors have perfection in themselves.

      • jo
        Posted 25/07/2013 at 2:33 am | Permalink | Reply

        No one buying a HTC One or Galaxy S4 would consider this – S4 costs $700+, HTC One costs $600+, this has an RRP of $399. To work its real market price, consider the Lumia 720 had an RRP of $439 and originally sold for $359 so this will sell for sub $350, i.e. half the cost of either.
        Similarly, no one buying this would consider a HTC One or Galaxy S4.

        • PeterA
          Posted 25/07/2013 at 8:16 am | Permalink | Reply

          They are going to have to lower that price when Google refreshes the Nexus 4, then again, the nexus 4 wont be in stock for 3 months *after* they do that.

      • stoffs
        Posted 25/07/2013 at 11:53 am | Permalink | Reply

        people shouldn’t be comparing this phone to a S4 or HTC one (the flag ship models for samsung / htc) …

        those should be compared to the lumia 1020 – it’s the new flagship model for Nokia.

    5. stoffs
      Posted 25/07/2013 at 11:48 am | Permalink | Reply

      Apart from not having the AFL app …. after nearly a year with a windows phone (lumia 920) …

      i don’t see any short comings of the win 8 phone system… in fact, it’s email client is miles ahead of the iphone one i left behind..

      i don’t miss any app off IOS …

      I’ve dropped it tonnes of times and the phone is fine, no scratches or broken screen…

      I can drop an mp3 file via my pc onto the phone via a folder and have it immediately usable as a ringtone..

      The only thing missing for me is vpn … but that’s coming anyway.

      Using ios / android reminds me of windows 3.11

    6. stoffs
      Posted 25/07/2013 at 11:49 am | Permalink | Reply

      additionally.. this isn’t a flagship phone – it’s an entry level smart phone with 4 g.

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