CEO Stephen Elop has revealed the time period for which Nokia will support the Symbian operating system in an interview with the Chinese edition of Nokia Conversations.
While Symbian devices are expected to run dry soon, with the last phones carrying the OS said to be coming out in 2012 – and Nokia getting on board with Microsoft in the Windows Phone 7 deal – support for the OS will be continued until 2016.
When asked to divulge what Nokia’s plans are with Symbian, Elop replied: “We’re in a period where the investment in Symbian absolutely continues. Even as we go through a transition towards our primary smartphone platform, Windows Phone, you’ll see that continued investment.”
“I know there have been questions about how long does that continue, and we’ve now been very clear about that, software updates to Symbian devices are expected at least until 2016.”
“So there’s a long history still to be paved for Symbian in the future,” he concluded.
In other words, panic-ye-not if you have a Symbian phone, there’s still plenty of mileage for the device in support terms. Honest.
Quite where all this leaves MeeGo, which was Nokia’s great post-Symbian smartphone OS hope before the Microsoft deal came along, is still unclear. On tablets, most likely.
There are an estimated 200 million phones running Symbian, and Nokia believes it will sell another 150 million before Symbian’s day is finally done. A bit of a rich sounding figure indeed…