If you were dreaming about a smartphone with a Lumia device’s quality and design but running the Android OS, your wish might come true sometime in the future. Singapore-based Newkia plans to make the Android handsets that Nokia wasn’t interested in making.
Founded by Nokia’s former Asia-Pacific CEO Thomas Zilliacus on the day that Microsoft acquired Nokia’s phone business, Newkia has already hired some ex-Nokia staff but the company is planning to bring on board Nokia employees who have shown interest in developing for Android.
Zilliacus says, “What Newkia wants to do is to use Nokia know-how, technology, and design to build the world’s best smartphones, but running on Android“.
Back in 2012, Zilliacus had plans to buy Nokia’s phone business with Nokia Android phones in mind. But a buyout didn’t happen due to lack of enough money. But he certainly has high hopes for Newkia. The company, which will have its R&D team in Finland, plans to release an Android handset within a year. They will be targeting the Asian market, though a Newkia phone might also get launched in the US down the road.
While this sounds cool – there’s also likely a ton of obstacles involved here. For one, the “Nokia design” that many of us loved is trademarked, and the rights of which will soon be heading Microsoft’s way. Hopefully Newkia can still maintain the ‘spirit’ of a Nokia device (but with Android), even if they can’t exactly ‘copy’ Nokia’s former design language.
We certainly look forward to hearing more and wish the startup tons of luck. What do you think of the effort?