July 24, 2012
Nokia Acquires Scalado, Including Staff
Michael Harper for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online
How about some good news for the troubled Finnish smartphone maker? Nokia has said they´ve completed the acquisition of all developers, intellectual properties and technologies from Swedish imaging company, Scalado. Now, nearly 50 imaging specialists will be moving to Nokia as they try to boost their camera offerings in current and future smartphones.
When the deal was announced on June 14, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop pledged to double down on their Lumia line of smartphones and location based services. Financial details of the acquisition have not yet been mentioned.
“We believe that this acquisition will strengthen Nokia´s leading position in mobile imaging and provide us with a great opportunity to create even better imaging products and applications,” said Jo Harlow, executive vice president of Smart Devices at Nokia, speaking to Reuters.
“We welcome the skilled and passionate professionals from Scalado to Nokia and are excited to have them work with the rest of our talented and dedicated imaging experts to bring world-class imaging solutions to our Nokia Lumia smartphones. The Nokia team is already responsible for many leading innovations in mobile imaging and, together with the experts from Scalado, we aim at astonishing the world with new, outstanding imaging experiences.”
The Scalado team will be moving to a new “Centre for Imaging Excellence” in Lund, Sweden, and will work alongside Nokia´s existing teams in Tampere and Espoo. According to their blog, Nokia plans to use the Scalado team for software and the Nokia teams to build the hardware.
“We´re excited to join Nokia at such an important time in its smartphone story,” said Sami Niemi, former co-founder of Scalado, now head of Capture and Relive, Smart Devices at Nokia.
“The technologies and competences we´ve developed should help move from taking photos to capturing memories and emotions.”
Armed with a brand new imaging team, it´s left to be seen how well Nokia can compete against other smartphone manufacturers around the world. Though this acquisition means their cameras could improve, it also means they have more IP to add to their patent folders, thereby boosting their case in their ongoing legal battles.
Nokia is also struggling to stay afloat in the new smartphone wars, already saying they plan to cut 10,000 jobs by the end of 2013 and close some of their plants. They´ve also announced plans to ditch their high-end luxury brand of smartphones, Vertu, saying they´re getting back to “core” businesses. In the end, Nokia hopes to return to the days of profitability and market dominance.
The Lumia has been Nokia´s biggest hit in recent years, selling 4 million in Q2 2012 out of a total 10 million Smart Devices, which include Symbian, Meego, and Windows Phone devices.
Nokia prides themselves on putting great cameras in their smartphones. For instance, their Nokia 808 PureView Smartphone contains a 41 megapixel camera, decked to the hilt with a Xenon and LED Flash and Carl Zeiss optics. Clearly their top of the line model, the PureView also starts at $699. Therefore, it seems reasonable to ask, will better cameras bring people back to Nokia, or will they have to adopt Android in the same way they´ve adopted Windows Phone?