Nokia (NYSE: NOK) CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo used his speech at the Consumer Electronics Show to say that the company was positioned to take advantage of “staggering” growth in developing markets. “In China, in India, in Vietnam there are huge opportunities to accelerate development” especially as smartphone features come to standard handsets, he said. While users in Western markets, for instance, are already tied to their e-mail accounts, most of the world is not, something he said Nokia was trying to change with its mobile services. In its first year on the market, the company’s Ovi e-mail service — which is designed for first time e-mail users — has already signed up five million accounts.
Throughout, Kallasvuo framed the company’s efforts as being about “doing good” — saying that the there was an opportunity to “do good business and do good at the same time.” (There was even a groanworthy introduction by Lonely Planet reporter Frances Linzee Gordon who talked about the innumerable benefits of cell phones including that they can “save lives” and “overcome environmental difficulties.” A bit much, perhaps? Her project on the “benefits of mobility” had been sponsored by the company).
It was mostly talk but Nokia did announce one bit of news: The company is setting up a competition to “encourage innovators to create a mobile product or service that raises the standard of living or enhances the lives of those in growth economies.” The winning entrant will get a $1 million prize.