Nokia has claimed that it has no intention of making smartphones again following several reports to the contrary.
The past week has seen claims that Nokia is ready to reenter the phone business it exited with the sale of its hardware arm to Microsoft last year.
Most recently, the president of Nokia China apparently confirmed all the speculation, claiming that the company would use its Chinese factories to build Android phones. The report also claimed that Nokia would be shifting its Research and Development to Sichuan.
This latest report has led to Nokia taking the unusual step of posting a direct denial on its website.
“Nokia notes recent news reports claiming the company communicated an intention to manufacture consumer handsets out of a R&D facility in China,” reads the statement. “These reports are false, and include comments incorrectly attributed to a Nokia Networks executive.”
“Nokia reiterates it currently has no plans to manufacture or sell consumer handsets.”
Under the terms of Nokia’s deal with Microsoft, the company would not be able to launch a Nokia-branded smartphone until the end of 2016.
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When it does become free to launch hardware again, Nokia’s comments – and its recent behaviour with the low-key launch of the Nokia N1 tablet – suggest that it might simply license its name to a handset manufacturer rather than designing and building its own phones from scratch.
Nokia seems to be repositioning itself as a major telecoms equipment and infrastructure business, with the recent acquisition of Alcatel Lucent for €15.6 billion.