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October 19, 2012

Nokia Loses $1.27B in Q3

It was a good-new, bad-news report Nokia delivered to its investors Oct. 18.

The Finnish phone-maker reported smaller-than-expected losses for the third quarter (Q3) — $1.27 billion, a 19 percent drop compared with 2011’s Q3.

Despite sales of its Windows Phone falling to less than 3 million units, however, investors, who had been expecting an even bigger drop in sales, pushed Nokia shares higher.

Nokia also presented a bleak outlook for the remainder of 2012 as it gears up for this fall’s launch of Microsoft Corp.’s new phone software, Windows Phone 8.

The new Lumia 820 and 920 models, which are to hit store shelves next month, are Nokia’s only hope for the final quarter.

The Lumia 920 will include wireless charging and an eight-megapixel camera. The phone will support wireless charging and the handset will have a 1.5GHz dual-core processor, 1GB of RAM, 32GB of storage and a 4.5-inch HD display. The Lumia 820, with a 4.3-inch display also features a high-resolution camera. Both will run on Microsoft’s latest software.

Analyst Hannu Rauhala from Pohjola bank in Helsinki told The Associated Press (AP) Nokia’s performance was a mild surprise.

“The worst fears are over. Nokia’s network operations were clearly better than expected, and its outlook for the rest of the year was better than expected,” Rauhala told AP “The cash flow situation was not as badly negative as expected.”

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop told AP the company is experiencing growing pains as it shifts its operating platform from Symbian and Meego to Microsoft’s Windows software.

“As we expected, the third quarter was a difficult quarter in our devices and services business. We continued to manage through a tough transitional quarter for our smart devices business as we shared the exciting innovation ahead with our new line of Lumia products,” Elop told AP. “While we continue to focus on transitioning Nokia, we are determined to carefully manage our financial resources (and) improve our competitiveness.”