Is Nokia recovering? Nokia World will give us the answer

Is Nokia recovering? Nokia World will give us the answerSo here's something a little odd. Nokia's share price, having hit an all-time low of $1.69 on Wall Street back in July, is now trading at $2.65, which doesn't sound like a massive increase but is actually a full 57% up.

Does this mean the doom and gloom is over for fans of the Finns? With its big Nokia World shindig kicking off in just four weeks, we're about to find out.

Yes, we all know Nokia is struggling, but the progress of its Wall Street share price puts it in full and painful perspective. From a $58.75 high back in June 2000, Nokia's July 17 low last month represents a loss of more than 97%, so that $1 bounce over the past three weeks won't be much consolation to long-term investors.

The question is – can those small shoots of recovery turn into something more? We've been looking for signs that the worst is over for a long time now, and in reality we're nearing the point where the worst needs to be over if Nokia is going to survive at all.

The Lumia line isn't exactly killing the opposition, with the initial crop effectively dealt the same fate as Nokia's abandoned Symbian devices thanks to Microsoft deciding they won't be upgradable, while truly innovative new products like the 808 PureView and N9 have been hung out to dry by Nokia itself effectively because they don't have Microsoft's blood running in their veins.

But Nokia's big chance is coming: Nokia World, back in Helsinki after two years in London, runs over two days starting on September 5, and the world – and the stock markets – will be watching.

Nokia simply has to produce an ace – an Windows Phone 8 Apollo-flavoured one, in fact more than one.

Ideally a Lumia 900-style flagship, a mid-ranger and a budget warrior, plus a disruptive device (to use one of Nokia's favourite terms) like a PureView WinPho device. Just the four, then. For starters.

The good news is that Nokia World is high-profile enough that a home run will have maximum impact on the company's share price, especially coming just ahead of Apple's all-consuming iPhone 5 launch. The flipside, of course, is that failure will see the company swamped by iPhone fever, and that $1 rally could be Nokia's last hurrah.

Put it this way: a $1 increase from where Nokia was standing is great news. But a $1 drop now could be terminal.

Let's check out the last five Nokia Worlds and how they've impacted the company's stock price:

2007: Comes With Music was the highlight, with Nokia looking to push itself as a software and services company rather than purely a device maker. The markets gave the move a 1% nod of approval.

2008: The Nokia N97 “handheld disaster computer” was the big launch in 2008. An initial 7% share price spike seemed to be a good sign, but the N97 took a full six months to go on sale, and proved to be a massive disappointment.

2009: The Nokia N900 and Booklet 3G were the headliners, backed up by the X6 and N97 mini. A mixed bag, but it kept Nokia treading water for another year while rivals made serious strides forward. With the smartphone industry exploding, Nokia's share price had remained unmoved.

2010: “Nokia is back”, huh? Turns out the most significant arrival of the show was new CEO Stephen Elop himself, who delivered the show's closing remarks. Oh sure, there was a bunch of new Symbian phones too: the C6, the C7, the E7 and the underrated N8, but none have had a bigger impact on Nokia than Elop. Significantly, for the first time Nokia's share price was slightly lower after Nokia World than it was before it.

2011: Finally the new Windows Phone era dawned after what must have felt like probably the longest year in Nokia's history. A pair of Lumias had to do with starters, plus a bunch of Series 40 Ashas. Considering Nokia's stocks had halved in value over the previous year, a 7% bump was probably not

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5 comments

Stelph  Aug. 8, 2012 at 15:30

"was probably not......"

Was probably not what? How can you end it on that, I am literally on tenderhooks.

TBH I am half tempted to get some Nokia shares, I think Nokia has turned a corner and will start to creep back up again, mind you not that quickly since every step back into the smartphone market will have to be wrestled from Android and iPhone. However if a lot of the rumurs are true and the WP8 model is coming along with a funky "distruptive device" then I think they will start to go back up for sure

blizzard7  Aug. 8, 2012 at 16:20

"was probably not......"

Was probably not what? How can you end it on that, I am literally on tenderhooks.

TBH I am half tempted to get some Nokia shares, I think Nokia has turned a corner and will start to creep back up again, mind you not that quickly since every step back into the smartphone market will have to be wrestled from Android and iPhone. However if a lot of the rumurs are true and the WP8 model is coming along with a funky "distruptive device" then I think they will start to go back up for sure


I think Nokia will regain some traction, but even if they do, it's going to be a long time before they really get back in the game.

Betas  Aug. 8, 2012 at 17:07

They purposely gave the 808 and n9 no attention to allow the lumias half a chance and even they have not been the "true wp devices" we all expected. I'm no f/oss advocate but the fact everyone's head turned to Nokia at the n9's reveal praising as it was the best thing they had made since the n95-2, I would have thought they would keep a backup plan to maintain independence from Microsoft. Evidently not, seeing as they dropped meego and meltemi and try and keep s40 going.

martinjjames / MOD  Aug. 9, 2012 at 07:56

"was probably not......"

Was probably not what? How can you end it on that, I am literally on tenderhooks.

TBH I am half tempted to get some Nokia shares, I think Nokia has turned a corner and will start to creep back up again, mind you not that quickly since every step back into the smartphone market will have to be wrestled from Android and iPhone. However if a lot of the rumurs are true and the WP8 model is coming along with a funky "distruptive device" then I think they will start to go back up for sure



It's one of those "choose your own adventure" type endings where you get to decide. My own take was something like "was probably not... what the company had in mind".

I'm just impressed you read all the way to the end :)

Stelph  Aug. 9, 2012 at 10:36

Ah I like this game, ok so my adventure ending is

"Considering Nokia's stocks had halved in value over the previous year, a 7% bump was probably not.... what JanSt had put his life savings on"

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