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Innovators & Influencers: Nokia Gets To Business In Smartphones

It's McDowell's job to parlay consumer market strength into business-sector results
Nokia is the No. 1 cell phone maker in the world. Mary McDowell's challenge is to parlay that position of consumer strength into an equally influential place in the fast-growing market for business smartphones.

McDowell came from Hewlett-Packard in 2004 to run Nokia's newly formed enterprise solutions group. As executive VP and general manager, McDowell's responsible for development, manufacturing, and customer engagement for Nokia's business products in the U.S. market, including its new E62 smartphones. Her competition includes Research In Motion, Palm, and a variety of vendors selling Windows Mobile devices.

A reputation in the consumer market for innovative designs and nifty multimedia features will get Nokia only so far. Businesses have other needs--secure e-mail and centralized management, for example.

In February, Nokia acquired Intellisync, and its wireless e-mail software, for $430 million. It's the kind of thrust Nokia needs. Expect McDowell to push ahead.

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