Mike: Nokia Ovi launch bombs


Ovi, Ovi, Ovi. It’s all we’ve heard from Nokia for nearly 18 months, ever since it decided there was more to life than just making handsets.

Now it’s here, launch day bombed. Ovi represented Nokia’s shift from manufacturer to content provider, in the same way that Apple has forged its identity in applications and not just a device.

Ovi was hyped and, at launch, failed miserably – in the kind of way Apple or its peers at the cutting edge of web 2.0 life would never let happen.

The portal ran slow or crashed, and the content was dominated by obsolete ringtones and themes.

Launch day made Nokia look like a dinosaur hardware manufacturer, and not a trendy young mobile media business. An apology came in the form of a blog post to say the company had installed servers to cope with traffic it hadn’t anticipated.

When every Ovi press release tells of 50 million potential users, it seems a late and paltry excuse. Shape up.