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July 5, 2011

Nokia cuts smartphone prices in Europe

To exit Japan in August  

By CBR Staff Writer

Finnish phonemaker Nokia has reportedly slashed the prices of its smartphones by up to 15% in Europe.

Reuters reported, citing industry sources, that the models N8, C7 and E6 saw the steepest of cuts, while other price cuts were smaller.

One source told Reuters, "There are no very big cuts per model, but the scale — across the portfolio — has not been seen for a very, very long time."

Nokia has been struggling to maintain its lead in the mobile phone market since 2008. Now it faces intense pressure from the growing number of Android-based phones as well as Apples iPhones.

The company had lowered its forecast in May and is expected to report losses for the second and third quarters this year.

Shares in Nokia have slipped over 40% this year and some analysts believe that the latest move to cut prices may make it difficult for the company to make a come back.

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Nokia CEO and former Microsoft employee Stephen Elop had announced many drastic steps to revive the fortunes of the company. Those included outsourcing software development, a software partnership with Microsoft and job cuts.

Many believed Nokia’s in-house Symbian OS was a drawback after its phones started facing competition from Apple and Android-based phones. At the lower end, Nokia started losing its market share to the growing number of Chinese mobile manufacturing companies.

Elop had said that the "Nokia platform is burning" in February.

The company plans to release its first phones running on Windows 7 OS in the last quarter this year.

Meanwhile, the Nikkei has reported that Nokia will exit the Japanese mobile phone market in August this year.

The move is believed to be a result of rising competition in the mobile phone market in Japan.

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