Nokia confident first Windows Phone will arrive in Q4

Pressure on Nokia is mounting to turn around its smartphone fortunes, as the company had to lower its financial forecast

Nokia has "increased confidence" that the first of its smartphones with Windows Phone will ship in the fourth quarter, the company said on Tuesday.

Nokia's CEO Stephen Elop seems to have set his sights on getting a Windows Phone-based product out for the important end-of-year holiday shopping season, in order to help turn around the company's smartphone fortunes. The company's teams are aligned around that goal, he said in a statement.

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The company won't divulge ship dates until closer to when the first phones arrive, but the pressure is on to deliver the devices this year, Elop said when the company announced its first quarter results.

Several chances to divulge more information are coming up shortly. On June 21, Elop will give a presentation at the Connection 2011 Conference, which is organized in conjunction with CommunicAsia2011 in Singapore. He will give an update on the company's partnership with Microsoft, and set the stage for a number of product and service launches, according to the program.

Elop is also scheduled to talk at the Open Mobile Summit, which takes place next week in London.

Last week, Nokia was one of the companies that said it will use the upcoming Mango version of Microsoft's Windows Phone operating system. "We already have Nokia phones running Mango in our labs," Microsoft said at the time.

On Tuesday, Nokia also lowered financial expectations for the current quarter. The company now expects Devices & Services net sales to be substantially below its previously expected range of €6.1 billion to €6.6 billion ($8.7 billion to $9.4 billion) for the second quarter, thanks to lower average selling prices and fewer users wanting to buy its phones.

The change underlines the severity of Nokia's current situation, and emphasizes the need for the company to swiftly deliver Windows Phone devices and phones with dual SIM cards, a feature that is important in developing countries, according to a research note from CCS Insight.

On Tuesday, Nokia started shipping the E6 and Nokia X7, as well. The two phones come with an improved version of Symbian^3, called Anna.

Send news tips and comments to mikael_ricknas@idg.com.

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