It is certainly easier said than done but the way current Nokia smartphones are not really setting the markets on fire, HMD needs to revisit its smartphone startegy for sure. This quarter Nokia is not among the top 10 smartphone brands reveals the report from analyst firm Counterpoint research.
Customer in growth markets like India and China are not that smitten by brand name anymore and throrughly compare smartphones mostly in terms of pricing, latest processor, Camera specs (and not quality necessarily), display OLED vs LCD (again quality is not realy the key), any seemingly premium feature and then the brand name may have an impact, if two smartphone are evenly matched in terms of specs and pricing.
Nokia smartphones with their premium design, guaranteed software updates and a big brand name are not resonating with customers in these two markets because these are not the drivers of smartphone sales in India and China. Perhaps, HMD needs a strategy of taking such specs-price play smartphones head-on by having its own portfolio targeted at them.
Even in Nokia-Symbian times we had N-series and C-series of Nokia smartphones. While N-series was known for premium experiences, C-series was targeted at those who valued affordability over premiumness. Instead of having Nine smartphones in its protfolio from Nokia 1 to Nokia 9, HMD needs to have only Nokia 6C, 7C and 8C that may come with the latest processor, high camera specs and the latest Android version but at a cheaper pricing. This cheaper range may not have guaranteed software update or may have software update support for a limited time like one year. This will be the ideal portfolio to tackle likes of Realme that disrupt the market with cheaper smartphones with the latest processors.
In the premium experience category (With premium design, top camera quality and 3 years of software update support) HMD may cut on the number of smartphones in the portfolio. There are too many Nokia smartphones to manage from Nokia 1 to Nokia 9. But in this range also it is important to offer the smartphones with the latest processors. HMD has been criticised heavily for using Snapdragon 660 and 636 in Nokia 7.2 and 6.2 in recent times.