Nokia is planning to make a comeback and return to making phones in 2016. That's according to personnel familiar with company plans, who reveal that releasing Android tablets under the brand simply isn't enough.
As reported by Recode:
"As early as next year, the company aims to rejoin the phone market, two sources briefed on Nokia's plans told Re/code. In addition, the company has a number of other ambitious technology projects, including some in the virtual reality arena, these sources said."
The Finnish company sold off its devices and services division to Microsoft back in 2014, which left Nokia to focus on mapping, networking and managing patents. Microsoft currently has a clause in place to continue using the Nokia branding until next year, and when this expires Nokia would be in a position to start executing smartphone plans.
Unfortunately, there are no details on what the company has in the works, or more importantly what software the new hardware will support. The company will need to double efforts on new products, and not simply rely on third-parties like Foxconn to produce unremarkable hardware like the N1, though it's expected Nokia will continue to work with license deals instead of manufacturing devices in-house.
"The [Nokia Technologies] division has released just two products–an Android program called Zlauncher and the N1, an Android tablet design it licensed to another manufacturer that is selling it under the Nokia name in China. Its return to the market is likely to employ a similar tactic."
Recode also notes that Nokia is experimenting with virtual reality, though again details are sparse. The company is certainly looking at new ways to get back into the swing of things if the recent $16.6 billion Alcatel-Lucent acquisition is anything to go by.