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The Lumia 900 Launch, 1 Week Later

The Nokia Lumia 900, Microsoft and the Finnish company’s last stand on the mobile wars, has been on sale for roughly a week. Apart from AT&T’s boo-boo, launching on Easter Sunday, and a crippling connectivity bug, the launch seems to be moderately successful, with the Lumia 900 currently topping the charts at Amazon.com and selling out in AT&T’s online store.

Windows Phone forums at Reddit, XDA Developers and Windows Phone Central are filled with happy owners still in their honeymoon period, grizzled Windows Phone veterans and recent converts thanks to Nokia’s very generous $100 credit in their AT&T accounts. They see that $100 overture as a clear signal that Nokia is not Apple (“you’re holding it wrong”) or Google (“huh? You mean you need actual customer support?”). To top it all, the promised emergency patch arrived 3 days ahead of schedule, which is unheard of in smartphone circles.

Nokia was the Apple of its time, with thought leadership in smartphones (they practically invented them), high-speed mobile connectivity, build quality and profitability. They’ve been suffering a very public fall after iOS, then Android, started eating away at the company’s key high-end and low-end markets. Last week, Nokia’s shares were at their lowest since 1997.

The Nokia Communicator 900, regarded as one of the very first smartphones

Still, Nokia was a behemoth. They were professional, reliable, resourceful. That’s what we all witnessed in the follow-up to the Lumia 900 launch, when a connectivity bug left new owners without a data signal.

Nokia addressed the connectivity problem head on, sparing no expense to make Lumia 900 owners happy. In a very public blog post, they admitted something was wrong, apologized, and took steps to correct it. That’s a masterful response to a potentially catastrophic crisis of confidence in their newest and most important product release in years.

[not to mention a PR and marketing campaign that proudly proclaimed that "the smartphone beta test was over"]

The Lumia 900 might not be a huge hit. Windows Phone may be beyond saving at this point. Nokia did, however, rescue their brand in the process. They showed the technology world why they’re not Apple or Google. No matter what happens in the next two years, Nokia will be better for it.

Now if only they made a high-end Android smartphone…

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