Friday, April 22, 2011

Ovi Maps to Windows Phone 7?

One of the biggest news that was reported in Februrary was Nokia + Microsoft getting together in the smartphone OS fight against the likes of iOS and Android.  Many WP7 users (and even more potential users now that a lot them are actually just waiting for the first Nokia WP7 handsets) before finally taking the plunge. 
So what does this holy matromony (or unholy if you are an Symbian fanboy) brings to the WP7 ecosystem?  On one hand, we know that Nokia is getting 1 billion dollars over the next 5 years from Microsoft for this "deal".  Microsoft is getting a big player fully behind WP7, but what about other Nokia goodies?

In case you don't know but Microsoft and Nokia got together this past week and finally signed this agreement.  Now, more information are coming to light from the Nokia front.  There are some good news for the army of Symbian developers as well.

Something for everybody?
Looks like Nokia is bring its excellent Ovi Maps to the Windows Phone ecosystem.  Looks like it might be coming to all brands of WP7, not just Nokia branded WP7 phones. 

Something for Nokia WP7 handsets
Like HTC, Samsung, and LG, Nokia will deliver a new, Nokia-branded application store but with a different "catch".  The Nokia store will support operator billing (36 markets and 112 operators).  But I am sure that like the other handset makers, Nokia will have its own hub (likely with Nokia DRM'ed apps - free apps and looks like paid apps)

Something for Existing Symbian Developers
Windows Phone developer registration fee will be waived for the first year of all published Nokia developers.

Note that the above are my interpretation of what the article says.  If it's real, that's great for all of us WP7 users.

Interesting development indeed.  As a user and a casual developer of WP7, I look forward to be able to use Ovi maps and it's capabilities (navigation, map search, and best of all, map caching - there goes my GPS unit).  I hope Microkia will provide these for free like they are currently for their Symbian phones right now.  As a developer, more users and more operators is always good news.

Source: Nokia Blog

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