Saturday, February 23, 2013

Just to Make Sure

Radios with tuning knobs soldered to a fix position may sound last century North Korean. However, it has been confirmed that Nokia's brand new flagship Lumia 920/920T Windows Phones offered to mainland China market are 'hard-coded' to an app store run by the Chinese government.

When owners of these Windows phones attempted to connect to the Microsoft app store, it would be re-directed to the state run app store hosted inside mainland China. Even if the owner set 'region' to other places, or travel outside mainland China, the phone would still refuse to connect to the official Microsoft store but rather redirect to the Chinese government store.

The government-run store in China is heavily customized. For example, you will not find Skype or Facebook apps.

This could prove to be a big blunder to Nokia's Chinese market. As Apple has dominated the 'fashion' population, and Android commands the 'feature' buyers, only a small number of 'geeky' users are left for Nokia's renewed high-end marketing approach. Unfortunately, this group is most sensitive to hint of information control.

A few months ago, Microsoft announced that it would retire the aged MSN Messenger worldwide except in mainland China. The aged instant messaging service was replace by Skype.

So they knew....

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