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Nokia Buys a Chunk of Panasonic

timothy posted about 3 months ago | from the genune-panaphonics-bearer-bills dept.

Businesses 54

jones_supa (887896) writes "Nokia's future as a company focused on providing network solutions, rather than mobile phones, looks to be bright. The company made big profits in the second quarter of 2014 after selling its mobile devices unit — the cornerstone of Nokia's rise in the 1990s — to Microsoft. Meanwhile Nokia has been buying up other businesses such as the Chicago-based SAC Wireless. Now Nokia is acquiring part of Panasonic's network business in an effort to boost its presence in Japan. The deal announced Thursday will give the Finnish firm control of roughly one third of Japan's mobile network market."

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SAC wireless? (2)

rossdee (243626) | about 3 months ago | (#47573923)

How good is the cellphone reception in a Minuteman silo?

Re:SAC wireless? (1)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 3 months ago | (#47574267)

Isn't that classified? Or would it be cheating to tell?

Smart Grid Networks (1)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47573965)

Panasonic plays in all kinds of networks, including Smart Grid. Smart grid networks are projected to grow tremendously in the next decade. Perhaps this is a move to get a piece of it.

Many smart meters are already cellular, and I know there are all kinds of network types for smart grid, including cellular, drive-by wireless, mesh networks, zigbee, wifi, and PLC.

Owning a piece of Panasonic gives Nokia turnkey exposure to all of these markets.

Didn't realise they weren't Japanese (0, Troll)

TWX (665546) | about 3 months ago | (#47573967)

I thought that Nokia was a Japanese company. Maybe with the Japanese electronics boom of the eighties they were happy to let that misconception persist.

From Finland (4, Insightful)

sjbe (173966) | about 3 months ago | (#47574075)

I thought that Nokia was a Japanese company.

No insult intended (seriously) but you were pretty much the only one who thought that. They are a Finnish company and that fact is well known worldwide. I can see how one might think they were Asian though since so much electronics comes from that part of the world. But Nokia got quite a lot of press regarding where they were from.

Re:From Finland (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47574179)

Nice troll.

Nokia is indeed a Japanese company. The submitter AND the editor are confusing Nokia with Ericsson, which IS a Finnish company.

Re:From Finland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47574227)

Nice troll.

Nokia is indeed a Japanese company. The submitter AND the editor are confusing Nokia with Ericsson, which IS a Finnish company.

Double Troll.

Never call a Swedish company Finnish.

Re:From Finland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47574911)

and never call Finnish company (nor anything else) Swedish!

Re:From Finland (2)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 3 months ago | (#47574299)

With all of Ericsson's employees mainly Indian, one could easily think Eric's son migrated east, not west?

Re:From Finland (1)

ericloewe (2129490) | about 3 months ago | (#47574461)

Not sure if trolling or just really stupid...

Re:From Finland (1)

omems (1869410) | about 3 months ago | (#47575083)

That's because they're the same thing, just different manifestations thereof.

Re:From Finland (4, Informative)

sjbe (173966) | about 3 months ago | (#47574495)

Nokia is indeed a Japanese company.

I think Nokia will be surprised [wikipedia.org] to hear that since their HQ is in Finland and always has been.

The submitter AND the editor are confusing Nokia with Ericsson, which IS a Finnish company.

And Ericssson will be surprised [wikipedia.org] to hear they are no longer Swedish.

Re:From Finland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47579031)

Holy crap. You took that post seriously? So much so you added links to "refute" it? You must be one o' them ass burgers dudes.

Re:From Finland (1)

rolfwind (528248) | about 3 months ago | (#47574185)

He thought that because the limited japanese phonetic system (46 sounds more or less iirc) allows for that name and it doesn't sound particularly european.

Re:From Finland (1)

TWX (665546) | about 3 months ago | (#47574719)

Pretty much. And honestly, Europe wasn't exactly known for their consumer electronics during my formative years either, excepting extremely high-end brands like Bang and Olufsen.

Re:From Finland (1)

aliquis (678370) | about 3 months ago | (#47574947)

Philips.
Grundig.
Telefunken.
Leica.
Ericsson.
Loewe.
Siemens.
Sennheiser.
Arion.
Arm.
EMI.
KEF.
Thorn.

Guess Zeiss doesn't cut it but you sure as hell has heard the name =P

Re:From Finland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47574971)

Arion should had been Orion.

But I was thinking wrong anyway, I tried to figure out the right name, was thinking about Onkyo (which likely isn't European.)

B&W
(Electrolux, AEG, Bosch, but they are in the wrong categories.)

Re:From Finland (1)

TWX (665546) | about 3 months ago | (#47575375)

How about I rephrase... Europe wasn't known for their consumer electronics in the United States. Of that list, the only one that I was aware of in the eighties through mid-nineties was Philips, and I knew them mostly through their ownership of American firm Magnavox. I'm now acquainted with Siemens, Ericcson, and Loewe, and I've heard of a couple of the others, but they weren't the names of that time like Samsung (for low end), Sony (for medium-grade) and Pioneer (for higher-end) were.

Re:From Finland (1)

cheesybagel (670288) | about 3 months ago | (#47575727)

Philips was kind of like Sony here until they basically sold most of their consumer electronics divisions. Plus the record companies.

Re:From Finland (1)

aliquis (678370) | about 3 months ago | (#47579771)

I guess not all of them is all that well-known.

But also US is a country where more of their goods is sold inside the country / their own market than what is the case over in Europe.

Here in Sweden for instance exports is a big thing, and trade with the EU, US and of course Asia too.

Imho Philips make shit products now.
Siemens: Revenue Decrease â80.30 billion (2013)[1]
Sony: Revenue Increase US$75.410 billion (2014)[2]
Bosch: Revenue Increase â53.9 billion (2013)
Philips: Revenue â24.78 billion (2012)[1]
Ericsson: Revenue SEK 227.8 billion (2012)[1]
BSH Bosch und Siemens HausgerÃte: Revenue â 9,8 billion (2012)
Osram: Revenue â5.4 billion (Fiscal Year 2012)

SteelSeries, Roccat, Qpad is European brands you may have noticed too.

Re:From Finland (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47578737)

umm am I missing something? none of those companies are Finnish, they all come from countries that haven't outlawed a sense of humour

Re:From Finland (1)

jones_supa (887896) | about 3 months ago | (#47579715)

Logitech is a Swiss company. :)

Re:From Finland (1)

aliquis (678370) | about 3 months ago | (#47579747)

Roccat is German.
SteelSeries is Danish.
Qpad is Swedish.

Re:From Finland (1)

aliquis (678370) | about 3 months ago | (#47579759)

BeyerDynamic of course is German.

Damn a lot of German brands and equipment in these lifts. I don't really know what the others may be (partly because I live in Sweden and Germany is closer I guess but also because it's the #1 economy of EU and fourth in the world (after US, China and Japan.)

Re:From Finland (2)

bill_mcgonigle (4333) | about 3 months ago | (#47574667)

They are a Finnish company and that fact is well known worldwide.

Most people knew them for their snow tires before their cell phones. He must not live in the snow belt. I'm glad they separated the two businesses - I still buy Nokian snow tires and I sure as hell don't want Microsoft involved in my winter traction!

Re:From Finland (1)

TWX (665546) | about 3 months ago | (#47574739)

Correct. Don't have to shovel sunshine...

Re:From Finland (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about 3 months ago | (#47576087)

I didn't even know there were Nokian snow tires until I worked for Nokia and read their history. Even then I thought they were a European-only brand for awhile.

Re:From Finland (1)

sjbe (173966) | about 3 months ago | (#47576203)

Most people knew them for their snow tires before their cell phones.

Not in the US they didn't. Virtually nobody in the US knew of Nokia the company before they became the big name in cell phone hand sets.

Re:From Finland (1)

GNious (953874) | about 3 months ago | (#47580111)

Wooooo ... 5% of the world didn't know of Nokia until they became the largest cellphone manufacturer.

(in fairness, since I don't use rubber-boots, or drive around in the snow, I didn't really know of Nokia until the 90'ies either)

The world is bigger than northern europe (1)

sjbe (173966) | about 3 months ago | (#47580245)

Wooooo ... 5% of the world didn't know of Nokia until they became the largest cellphone manufacturer.

Yeah, I'm sure they were a household name in India, China, Brazil and Russia too... [/sarcasm]

Seriously, if more than 10% of the world's population (and I'm being generous) had ever heard of Nokia prior to them getting into cell phones I'd be shocked.

Re:From Finland (1)

alexander_686 (957440) | about 3 months ago | (#47574797)

No insult intended (seriously) but you were pretty much the only one who thought that.

IIRC there was a joke in the first Michael Bay's Transforms movie along those lines.

I think part of the reason is that it sounds kind of like Japanese and Finnish and Japanese are kind of in the same language group. Not saying there are kissing cousins like the romance languages, but as languages go they seem to be orphans which share a common great grandparent.

Re:From Finland (1)

aristotle-dude (626586) | about 3 months ago | (#47575063)

No insult intended (seriously) but you were pretty much the only one who thought that.

IIRC there was a joke in the first Michael Bay's Transforms movie along those lines.

I think part of the reason is that it sounds kind of like Japanese and Finnish and Japanese are kind of in the same language group. Not saying there are kissing cousins like the romance languages, but as languages go they seem to be orphans which share a common great grandparent.

Sorry, but Finnish is part of the Uralic group and Finnic subdivision while Japanese is part of the Altaic language family and Japonic subdivision.

Re:From Finland (1)

alexander_686 (957440) | about 3 months ago | (#47575173)

That is true. But some linguists believe that Uralic and Altaic have common roots. The debate goes forward.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/U... [wikipedia.org]

Re:From Finland (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about 3 months ago | (#47576175)

Not much similarity in the languages except for having a limited phoneme set. The most commonly known language that Finnish is related to is Hungarian. If there is a common parent to Japanese thousands of years ago it is so far back in time as to be irrelevant as to modern sounds.

But stick some substitute in some Finnish vowels that have the accent marks and no one would have confused it with Japanese.

Re:From Finland (1)

Applehu Akbar (2968043) | about 3 months ago | (#47574875)

Don't laugh. For years I would see golfers (lots of these in AZ) going by with those huge Ping bags, and I always assumed it to be a Chinese company. I was amazed to find that it was not only American but local.

Re:From Finland (1)

TWX (665546) | about 3 months ago | (#47575411)

"Ping" never got me, but I knew the word first from the film adaptation of The Hunt for Red October and its scottish pronounciation (even though he was playing a Soviet Lithuanian), and after that I new it from the ICMP utility. For me, if it had a language association it was scottish/English and technical, not Asian or Chinese in particular.

Re:From Finland (1)

Sockatume (732728) | about 3 months ago | (#47574985)

I wonder if this is a side-effect of the American pronunciation "No-kia" versus the European "Knock-ia"

Re:From Finland (1)

TWX (665546) | about 3 months ago | (#47575393)

Probably. The "No" is pronounced strongly and staccato, and the "kia" part has most emphasis on the "ee" pronounciation of the letter i.

Re:From Finland (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about 3 months ago | (#47576051)

Actually, a LOT of people thought they were Japanese. I honestly don't know why that is. The syllables in the language are similar, but there's nothing really in the word "Nokia" that is familiarly Japanese.

And then, once some people discover Nokia is actually Finnish they will start up with the Swedish accents...

Nokia still has products? (0)

nucrash (549705) | about 3 months ago | (#47574311)

Granted, Nokia sold their phone/mobile device business to Microsoft and before that, I thought they sold their network appliance business to Checkpoint which is a BSD based kernel if I remember correctly. Old, but still fairly solid.

I honestly didn't know Nokia had anything left, so color me surprised with this.

Re:Nokia still has products? (4, Interesting)

Ceriel Nosforit (682174) | about 3 months ago | (#47574441)

They started out in 1904 making rubber. Today they provide large part of Finland's export, so around here they are considered 'too big to fail'.

Importing a CEO from abroad was seen with great suspicion, which is why Elon made such a grand and public gesture of assimilating Finnish culture for a few months. - A venture about as daft as scheduling Tibet for two years to get enlightened.

Re:Nokia still has products? (1)

serbanp (139486) | about 3 months ago | (#47576063)

Repeat slowly after me: Elop, Stephen Elop. Elon Musk is a different (way different!) person...

Re:Nokia still has products? (2)

c (8461) | about 3 months ago | (#47576187)

I hear the cultural assimilation process went pretty well until he tried the salmiakki. That experience turned out to be the impetus for the "burning oil platform" memo.

Re:Nokia still has products? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47576273)

> They started out in 1904 making rubber

Nokia was established 1865 in the town of Nokia [wikipedia.org] .

Re:Nokia still has products? (2)

Darinbob (1142669) | about 3 months ago | (#47576383)

I think a CEO from abroad wasn't as big a concern as a CEO from Microsoft. They've had several foreigners high up in the executive staff and on their board for some time.

Re:Nokia still has products? (1)

erikscott (1360245) | about 3 months ago | (#47574727)

Nokia has completely shifted gears before - they used to make forestry equipment at one point (early 70s?), which indirectly led to their making VHF radios with telephone interfaces for use out in the boondocks, which led to cellphones for them.

The VHF "portable phones" from the late 80s, by the way, can be hacked into becoming 2 meter (144 MHz) ham radios. Have fun...

Re:Nokia still has products? (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about 3 months ago | (#47576327)

Nokia had a lot of divisions, phones were just one of them. Nokia Networks however had previously merged with a Siemens division and became Nokia Siemens (not entirely sure if it's under the umbrella of Nokia as a subsidiary). There's also Nokia Research which I think is still a part of Nokia. Check Point was a partner with Nokia starting in 1998, but was never owned by Nokia. (I'm not sure what Nokia division that was)

Microsoft Mergers and Acquisitions (0)

LifesABeach (234436) | about 3 months ago | (#47574341)

Letting Samsong, and Apple sue each other; mean while m$ makes inroads for future litigations to a weakened industry?

Dumping windows phone definitely made sense (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47574595)

It is a platform going nowhere, despite a huge marketing spend.
I know people working for two major developers, who have just killed windows phone versions of their software, apparently due to dismal sales.
Microsoft will have to change course, if Nokia is to remain in the hardware business, and sell phones with software that people want to buy.

and if all that fails (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47574613)

they can go back to being a lumber mill!

Nokia missed being Ericsson by 7 years (1)

jphamlore (1996436) | about 3 months ago | (#47575057)

Nokia is 7 years too late trying to be the company Ericsson remade itself into in the 2000. The key blunder was Nokia's backing WiMAX, a technology that was horribly marketed as potentially cutting out the major telecoms, whereas Ericsson helped create LTE with Verizon [ericssonhistory.com] by providing a solution for Verizon to upgrade from CDMA. It's surprising to me that the tech sites have not trumpeted perhaps history's greatest example of a company paying the price for failing to invest in the next generation of technology. Instead of building on its baseband expertise, Nokia tried to outsource it ignoring LTE. This destroyed its relationship with its fab partner TI who then pulled out of the mobile phone market leaving Nokia with no supplier for its then line of phones. Nokia was then left having to turn to Qualcomm ... only it had been involved in a massive legal battle with Qualcomm over IP which Nokia then had to settle for an immediate payment of the equivalent of billions of dollars.

One must remember in 2008 the tech press was reporting that it was Qualcomm that was on the ropes due to its IP steadily decreasing in value. But Qualcomm, whose CEO was a Ph.D. in EECS from Cal Berkeley, invested in developing their own ARM SoC as well as LTE baseband chips and bought AMD mobile graphics division for a complete smartphone solution. Meanwhile Nokia invested in neither a modern ARM SoC, unlike Apple and Qualcomm and Samsung, nor in LTE baseband chipsets, nor in foundry relationships unlike again Apple, Qualcomm, and Samsung.

Nokia the phone company was a dead man walking in 2008 long before Elop got there.

Nokia missed being Ericsson by 7 years (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 3 months ago | (#47576479)

Nokia is 7 years too late trying to be the company Ericsson remade itself into in the 2000. The key blunder was Nokia's backing WiMAX, a technology that was horribly marketed as potentially cutting out the major telecoms, whereas Ericsson helped create LTE with Verizon [ericssonhistory.com] [ericssonhistory.com] by providing a solution for Verizon to upgrade from CDMA.

It's surprising to me that the tech sites have not trumpeted perhaps history's greatest example of a company paying the price for failing to invest in the next generation of technology. Instead of building on its baseband expertise, Nokia tried to outsource it ignoring LTE. This destroyed its relationship with its fab partner TI who then pulled out of the mobile phone market leaving Nokia with no supplier for its then line of phones. Nokia was then left having to turn to Qualcomm ... only it had been involved in a massive legal battle with Qualcomm over IP which Nokia then had to settle for an immediate payment of the equivalent of billions of dollars.

One must remember in 2008 the tech press was reporting that it was Qualcomm that was on the ropes due to its IP steadily decreasing in value. But Qualcomm, whose CEO was a Ph.D. in EECS from Cal Berkeley, invested in developing their own ARM SoC as well as LTE baseband chips and bought AMD mobile graphics division for a complete smartphone solution. Meanwhile Nokia invested in neither a modern ARM SoC, unlike Apple and Qualcomm and Samsung, nor in LTE baseband chipsets, nor in foundry relationships unlike again Apple, Qualcomm, and Samsung.

Nokia the phone company was a dead man walking in 2008 long before Elop got there.

Nokia owns over 50% of LTE patens and makes more profits than Ericsson with less revenue. Try again.

Network stuff is fine... (1)

markhb (11721) | about 3 months ago | (#47575763)

Just so long as they don't stop them from making 50" plasma TV's before it's time to upgrade my current set!

Non-Asian Electronics Companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about 2 months ago | (#47578217)

For all the clueless, here's a short list of non-asian electronics companies (some historical):

Seimens (Germany), Philips (Netherlands), Nokia (Finaland), Ericsson (Sweden), Zenith (USA), RCA (USA), Sennheiser (Germany), Emerson (USA), Magnavox (USA), Bose (USA), Audiovox (USA), Avaya (USA), Marconi (UK)

List is here for more [wikipedia.org]

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