These days, Nokia is facing stiff competition from the iOS from Apple and the Google Android and hence seeking an exit from luxury phone business. As the mobile phone brand gears up for battle, there are bound to be some casualties. The first of these is Nokia Vertu – the brand’s luxury arm, which Nokia is planning to sell. Apparently, Nokia is planning to give up manufacturing luxury phones and concentrate fully on its line of smartphones and budget cell phones.
In many tech circles, Nokia has been criticized for its Vertu line of luxury phones. Most times, these were just blinged out editions precious stones that pushed up prices to thousands of dollars. However, Vertu’s luxury phones continued to rake in the moolah since their launch in 1998, fetching revenues of between $268 million and $402 million annually. The most recent luxury phone to emerge out of Vertu’s workshops is the $27,000 Vertu Constellation, which is blinged out with alligator skin details and sapphire crystal.
Currently, Vertu mobile phones are sold across 60 nations from exclusive Vertu outlets. One of the big advantages of buying a Vertu phone is the associated “concierge” service. This essentially gives Vertu users access to a live assistant who carries out various kinds of bookings and reservations. Another plus is the Vertu City Brief – a series of curated guides to 200 global cities. However, despite the add-on services, Vertu’s luxury phones proved no match for their counterparts from the iPhone.
Nokia is serious about shrugging free of Vertu. The mobile phone maker has roped in Goldman Sachs to supervise the sale.