A wave of nostalgia flowed over the internet last week as news emerged that Microsoft would be discontinuing the use of the brand name Nokia for smartphones. Although feature phones will continue to carry the once-iconic name, new Nokia smartphones will be known as Microsoft Lumia.

But why is the name being withdrawn when – along with Samsung – Nokia is the most recognized brand in the world of mobile (with more than 90% globally knowing it)? The answer lies in the difference between familiarity and ownership; although 4 in 10 internet users say they have owned a Nokia handset in the past – more than any other brand of mobile – only 15% say they currently own a Nokia. In contrast, more than a third of internet users now own a Samsung.

Furthermore, only 1 in 10 are considering buying a Nokia – less than are thinking about purchasing an iPhone, Samsung, Sony or HTC phone. Nokia might still be well-known to digital consumers, then, but it’s no longer the force it once was.


Written by

Felim is Senior Trends Manager at GWI. He oversees the Trends team who produce a wide range of off-the-shelf reports and infographics along with our Chart of the Day series. Moving to GWI after completing a PhD, Felim specializes in writing about online consumer behaviors and digital trends.

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