December 22, 2008
Nokia moved to make its Ovi platform more accessible and meaningful Monday by enabling some Nokia handset users to set up free e-mail accounts that can be established with cell phones without PC involvement.
Nokia also established a single login procedure for various Ovi features, replacing the old cumbersome system, which required a separate sign-in for each feature. Mail on Ovi is widely available starting Monday in beta test status on Nokia Series 40 devices. The feature was previously tested in Malaysia and the Philippines "with extremely encouraging results," Nokia said. The new e-mail service is primarily aimed at emerging markets. "Rather than focusing purely on push e-mail for the world's most advanced mobile users, we are mobilizing e-mail across Nokia's mainstream device portfolio, while giving consumers in emerging markets their first e-mail account, Mail on Ovi, as well as their very own Internal identity," senior VP Tom Furlong said in a statement. "These people," he continued, "are the new 'mobile digital natives' who will exclusively use their mobile phones for e-mail and Internet, rather than a PC." The single-sign-in feature will facilitate the use of the bevy of Nokia features, which Nokia has been adding to over the past several months. While Nokia trumpeted the rollout of the Mail on Ovi feature in emerging markets, the company's plans for more established markets in North America and Europe was less clear. The established mobile phone service providers in industrialized countries often resist services offered by independent suppliers like Nokia. Nokia said during the beta period 12 languages will be offered for Mail on Ovi, including English, Spanish, Portuguese, French, German, Hindi, Bengali, Tagalog, Bahasa Indonesia, and Bahasa Malaysia.
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