- 11-22-2012, 09:09 AM #1
The 920 launch really is a complete shambles.
I'm in the UK and am a big fan of the Windows Phone OS - I've had a Dell Venue Pro for a while now and have been patiently waiting to upgrade to WP8. And yet, as a subscriber to Vodafone, I basically can't get my hands on the phone. Nokia's inability to release a SIM-free version of the phone in the UK means I can either move over to Orange/T-Mobile/EE or, basically, get shafted. This might be a sensible strategy if Vodafone and O2 didn't comprise a massive chunk of the UK market. Unfortunately, they do - in 2010 it was exactly 50% (with Orange, T-Mobile, Virgin and Three together making up the remaining 50%).
So, why don't I just order a SIM-free phone from alternative sources instead? Goodness. Clove out of stock. Expansys out of stock. All outlets in Germany pretty much out of stock, unless I pay silly money. Amazon.de no stock. Thing is, they're not out of stock because of some crazy rush for the phone - they're out of stock because Nokia just isn't supplying sensible quantities. Phaseshifter mentioned that after a long wait, Cyberport (or whatever it is, I forget the name, sorry) got 40 units of one colour, and nothing else. Right. And this is, what, 2-3 weeks after launch and it's still a small dribble of units here and there? There's heaps of European users just as frustrated as I am.
I hate Apple and the iPhone with a passion - but I'll give them this much credit, they know marketing's not a difficult concept. Supply and demand. You create the demand. You provide the supply. It really isn't rocket science. You see an iPhone launch, you know you can buy the damned thing in a week or so's time. I sent an email to Stephen Elop expressing my frustration and basically concluding "I have £500 ready to buy your phone [without switching provider] - please tell me how." To his eternal credit, he replied - but of course, it was just to reassure me availability was coming. I'm still none the wiser as to how I get the phone on my network.
It's exactly this kind of strategy that has relegated Nokia from mobile leader to nothing more than a small role on the sidelines. I've been waiting an eternity for the phone and now I find myself eyeing up the HTC 8X instead because handing over my hard-earned cash really shouldn't be so difficult. Ultimately, I'll probably wait it out - but if an ardent supporter of the phone is starting to waver (and I'm not the only one, judging by posts here) then what hope has Nokia of getting the more casual purchaser to switch their provider allegiance and purchase a 920? I have no doubt whatsoever that when we first start to see 920 sales figures, they'll stink. And when they do, it boils down to decisions like locking out 50% of the UK market. I do feel sorry for anyone in Nokia R&D - work so hard on the technology and the apps, only to see the whole thing screwed up again by other divisions at Espoo. Nokia's hopes really do ride on the success of WP8 (especially if RIM finally gets their act together with BB10) and can anyone really look at this launch and say "Yep, that's exactly how you launch your new flagship phone. Good job guys."?
Rant over - and hope everyone who's actually got their hands on a 920 is enjoying it...
11-22-2012, 09:15 AM #3
- 196 Posts
I'm in Thailand, at the Nokia store they said the phone will be availabe on the 22nd (today), went there, all sold out, checked 3 different stores. On a side note, the big 3 carriers here have been promoting the Lumias since last week but guess what? Nothing to show at their stores, and when I call their representatives no one knows when the devices are available.
So, I see commercial ads for the Lumias in every single train station here in Bangkok, on websites, on TV, but you can't get the bloody device anywhere.
- 11-22-2012, 10:07 AM #4
I know Nokia will miss the Black Friday sales. I just hope they can ramp up production fast enought to get phones out to everyone globally. The more we can get out the better Win8 phones will be. I wonder how closely MS is watching.
- 11-22-2012, 10:23 AM #5
Here in Denmark it's a sorry sight to behold as well. Sure, the Lumia 920 is available at some carriers and stores but the only sell them in either black or yellow. No where in this entire country can you buy a white or red Lumia 920 for less than a gaming pc with middling components.
The "normal" off-contract price for smartphones such as Lumia 920 here in Denmark are around 880 USD/550 GBP. Now that's the price of the yellow or black. If you want a white or red you'd have to pay 1200 USD/750 GBP! It's madness! :S
The only reason those prices are so insanely high is because a Lumia 920 in either red or white is more rare than a live dinosaur.
- 11-22-2012, 10:39 AM #7
I don't think it's been a success - here in the UK retailers have had very little stock to begin with. It's not like there were massive lines outside the shops and despite working overtime Nokia just couldn't deliver them in hundreds and thousands - it's more a case that something's clearly amiss with their manufacturing right now and most retailers just don't have any stock at all, got very little to begin with, and have no idea when more is coming in. Nokia seem to think this is like a videogame console launch - where if people can't get the XBox 360 on launch, they'll wait for it (as there's no alternative)... and when people can't get the PS3 on launch, they'll wait for it (because they made a clear commitment they wanted that console over the alternatives). Phones aren't quite like that - people won't hold out. They'll give up and move on. And as Vaas makes the point - missing out on Black Friday sales? It's like a textbook example in how to screw up a flagship phone launch (!).
- 11-22-2012, 10:43 AM #8
I guess I don't understand how the phone selling out is a bad thing. When Apple sells out it's a sign it's a success. And for the record Apple takes at least a month to restock. They never have the second round of phone within a week or two.
If anything Nokia should be capitalizing on this and doing ads about how popular it is and that due to the popularity they are having trouble keeping them in stock.
I just left the cult of apple to try this phone out and I love it. And I love seeing the stores are having trouble keeping them in stock. That's a good thing, not a bad thing.
11-22-2012, 10:46 AM #10
- 84 Posts
Launch has been a complete clusterf*ck elsewhere, too. Limitited to no availability (and only black anyway) in stores, online retailers don't even know when they are going to receive fresh stock (or their first batch...), pricepoints and availability dates keep varying by day, and worst: no Amazon stock yet, with 3rd party retailers shelling out the last of the few units they got at prices completely blown out of proportion.
Good job everyone.
11-22-2012, 10:48 AM #11
- 280 Posts
I agree there is certainly not enough stock to support the demand that there is/was at launch.
The problem is casual users WILL switch networks if there's a phone they like the look of - it's done all the time at Phones4u.
What really annoys me at the moment is I've convinced a bunch of people to switch to Windows Phone and they've ALL managed to get the devices by now, yet I still have to wait until December 6th, because I'm paying more upfront???? Where on earth is the sense in that, Nokia? The networks surely aren't paying you the same revenue as you get for a retail sale per unit, it can't be that damaging...
...I see why Nokia gave exclusivity, but at least make enough stock....do what everyone suspects Apple does and just make it LOOK like you haven't got enough stock if necessary...but at least make sure the deliveries are regular and we don't have this ridiculous "well, we might get a couple if we win the fist fight with other retailers to get the few models released from production this week"
...anyway, I'll be happy on December 6th...
11-22-2012, 11:03 AM #12
- 9 Posts
Some blame can be put on Nokia but I think the biggest mistakes were made by the retailers. So if Nokia made mistakes they would be: 1. underestimating demand 2. not controlling the retailers enough. One cause for the lack of phones probably is also Qualcomm inability to keep up with the demand for their Snapdragon S4 chip.
For example, the lack of colors has nothing to do with Nokia.
11-22-2012, 11:07 AM #13
- 1,374 Posts
- 11-22-2012, 12:20 PM #14
11-22-2012, 01:24 PM #15
- 61 Posts
I also want to argue with those saying lack of availability must be a sign of success.
Clove and Expansys (2 of the biggest sim free retailers) had about 100 units each last week. I've spoken to several phones4u / EE stores who claim to all have had less than ten units each. I asked about a red one at a p4u the other day and the manager told me he'd heard that a shop in the region had had one in last week. That about sums it up.
During a launch window in the UK apple will ship several hundred thousand units. It sounds like Nokia have had trouble getting several thousand into the channel. It is pitiful.
I too noticed Clove are now getting a few more (and not just white) the week after next and I'm debating whether it's even worth the effort for £520 considering it's positioned as a cheaper phone in US. Think I might just get an 8x too.
- 11-22-2012, 02:45 PM #17
I'm not saying it's a sign of success, I'm saying it's a good thing that what they are getting is selling out. It shows that people are interested and following through on that interest.
I'm just saying that the fact the Nokia isn't meeting demand is a good thing...for now. It means they didn't expect the sell through they are getting.
Of course if they don't up production to meet demand then it will be a problem.
- 11-22-2012, 04:45 PM #20
It's all relative though - if they're only getting another small batch in, in two weeks' time, then them selling out asap doesn't mean anything. Nokia need retailers of all shapes and sizes, with big shipments, to be selling out. Clove getting through another hundred or two units isn't going to make any significant impact on Nokia sales figures...
11-22-2012, 05:17 PM #22
- 27 Posts
Seriously though, it's a disaster for people having to wait for phone, but not for Nokia.
Smartphones are "supposed" to be sold out during first month!
If they had enough prodution power to exhaust demand during first month after flagship launch, they would have way too much prodution rest of the year.
So why don't they launch with bigger stock, you may ask?
Because that would mean delaying the launch date until mid december, and that would be a horrible idea.
Atleast now people know that they can get the phone before christmas. That's what's important. That makes them wait.
11-22-2012, 05:33 PM #23
- 45 Posts
I really don't understand why everyone is beating on Nokia about the launch. If AT&T, for example, ordered 5000 for launch and Nokia delivered them 5000 then the problem is with AT&T, not Nokia. And knowing how large companies work, someone at the AT&T warehouse can't call up Nokia and say "quick, send us another 10,000". A purchase order needs to be created, approved and sent to Nokia, who then will ship the phones. That takes time. At a company like AT&T I suspect it takes over a week just to get the PO to Nokia approved, with multiple levels of managers needing to approve before it goes out.
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