There’s a rumor in the Chinese media that Nokia (HEL:NOK1V; NYSE:NOK) is preparing its Lumia 800 model (pictured above) to be China’s first ever Windows Phone 7 (WP7) device next summer.
Apparently, the Finnish mobile giant is extensively testing its Nokia Lumia 800 in its Chinese-language localization, as well as ensuring that its other services – such as its Comes With Music thingy – will work for locals on WP7. Nokia, however, has not publicly confirmed all this.
Since this move would actually require more work on Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) side, especially in terms of supporting Chinese users in its Marketplace with full localization and online payment methods, this is presumably being coordinated with the Redmond company.
The time-frame in this rumor chimes with word that the retailer Suning (SHE:002024) has already been chosen by Microsoft as its main retail partner to distribute official WP7 releases.
Currently, WP7 phones are being used by a tiny minority of local geeks who bought the phones on the grey-import market. Nonetheless, major Chinese web companies have been developing apps for the WP platform already – we looked at five of the biggest Chinese WP7 apps last summer; and just this week one more biggie was added with Tencent’s (HKG:0700) beta release of its group-messaging Weixin for WP7.
[Source: DoNews – article in Chinese]