In brief: Finnish company HMD Global, owner of the Nokia brand that has been releasing handsets carrying the iconic name over the last few years, has announced it will be launching its own line of phones to sit alongside the Nokia devices.
Jean-Francois Baril, chairman & CEO at HMD Global, writes that the company is establishing an original HMD brand of mobile devices that will exist alongside Nokia phones. The brand will also bring collaborations with new partners that have yet to be revealed.
“It has been a great journey as ‘HMD – the home of Nokia phones’ – an exclusive position we have held for the past six years,” said Baril. “Now we are ready for the next step on our journey – to enter the market independently as a force to create a new world for telecommunications focused on consumer needs.”
It was back in 2016 when HMD Global signed a licensing deal with Microsoft that gave it exclusive use of the Nokia brand on mobile phones and tablets for the next decade. The company is owned by Terry Gou, the founder and former chairman of Foxconn who is making another challenge for the Taiwanese presidency.
The first Nokia-branded Android devices arrived in 2017, with the famous Nokia 3310 being resurrected along with many other budget- and mid-tier handsets. It sounds as if that strategy isn’t going to change with HMD Global’s own brand of phones; Baril says the company will continue to “design for a more sustainable and affordable future.”
Baril added that HMD Global is the fastest-growing 5G smartphone manufacturer and a leader in sustainability with its repairable devices.
Baril didn’t reveal details such as when the HMD-branded phones might arrive. Nokiamob.net notes that recent EUIPO filings likely offer an idea of how the brand will appear on the new HMD handsets (above).
Baril also mentioned that HMD has established its own Research and Development, software development, distribution, and operational networks, which should help grow the new brand.
Earlier this month, HMD Global announced that it was adding two new feature (or dumb) phones to its lineup of similar devices, the Nokia 130 and Nokia 150. They both come with a trait long since abandoned by most modern manufactures: removable batteries.
With the Nokia licensing agreement set to end in 2026, HMD Global may be preparing to lose the contract when the time comes, allowing its own line of phones to step into the gap.