Nokia Lumia 920 exclusive to the EE family

I wasn’t totally surprised but I was saddened to see the news that Nokia’s flagship Windows 8 device is going to be exclusive to the EE family of EE for 4G users and Orange and T-Mobile for 3G users for an intial period.

I have been using a Lumia 800 since they launched earlier this year and I am a big fan of the Windows operating platform so I was looking forward to the next generation device and platform, sadly it is not to be as my contract is with Vodafone.

We hear in the news on a regular basis that Nokia are struggling with their handset shipment numbers and that Q3 sales showed a loss of $754 million alongside a decrease in Lumia shipments of 1.1 million compared to Q2. However, there are mitigating circumstances with these shipment figures as we learnt in Q2 that the current Lumia range running Windows 7.5 would not be able to ugrade to Windows 8 when available, (there will be a 7.8 instead) so maybe Nokia buyers were just holding out for the new devices.

But in the UK market, the network share is fairly even with Vodafone, O2 and the EE Family accounting for approximately a third each, so why limit your flagship model, the one that is needed to “save you” (according to some analysts), to just one part of the market.

The marketing power and ££’s behind the 4G network on EE is driving consumers to EE’s door but it is evident that national coverage to the standard the networks always quote of “98%” is unlikely until 2014, are enough people going to be moving away from Vodafone & O2 in that time frame just to get these handsets?

For Nokia, I fear not, and even if they do, Nokia need to then win the hearts and minds battle against two very strong competitors in the apple iPhone 5 and the Samsung Galaxy S3 LTE.

If it was your business, would you have made the same or a similar decision? I would be interested to hear if so and why.

So I will have to sit and wait for it to become available SIM free, but in this market with new handsets out all the time, my head may get turned by a rival.