updated 11:05 am EDT, Wed April 15, 2009
Nokia 5800 Surprise
Nokia's 5800 XpressMusic touchscreen phone may become the centerpiece for the company after surprisingly strong sales, according to analyst estimates. Where the company only officially said it had shipped 1 million units between December and January, GC Capital's Tero Kuittinen now determines that Nokia should have sold 2.5 million of the device just in the first three months of 2009, indicating exceptionally strong sales for a single model.
The phone's sales numbers are helped by repeated sell-outs in the UK as well as significant expansion over the past few months, including Australia and Singapore. Cost is also considered an important factor: as the phone costs roughly $368 before discounts, it can often undercut the iPhone in price when subsidized through a carrier. Nokia has nearly all the features of its Apple rival onboard but has saved money by using a simpler resistive touchscreen as well as moving storage to a bundled microSDHC card.
Strong sales are expected to play an important role in Nokia's results for the winter quarter when published tomorrow. Although still the world leader in phone share both for smartphones and any category, the company has plummeted in smartphone share from year-to-year as the iPhone and BlackBerry have taken away from its influence. Nokia was relatively late in developing touchscreen phones and has at least temporarily ceded the US market by relegating its US phones to full-priced, unlocked models limited to its company stores and some resellers.