Nokia Only Getting Linux-Based OS Onto One Phone Next Year

Nokia still holds the lion's share of the cell phone market place, but that edge is quickly slipping away. The Finnish handset maker has arguably fallen into the same holding pattern that has brought Sony Ericsson to its knees, and with players like Apple, Samsung, LG and HTC innovating at a rapid pace, Nokia has been left behind in some respects. Of course, the company is still selling an awful lot of low-end handsets to emerging markets, but it has no major players in the smartphone space that rival the Droid and iPhone in terms of hype, buzz and overall features.

Now, according to a new report, it looks like Nokia may be lagging behind for a little while longer. Reportedly, the company will only install Linux software on a single phone next year, which isn't what loyalists were hoping to hear. The N900 is definitely Nokia's highest-profile device at the moment, and it's also the firm's first with the Linux-based Maemo 5 operating system. Early reviews have been generally positive, but if Nokia plans to stop the sliding, it should probably get those positive vibes flowing to other phones in its lineup as soon as possible.

In related news, Nokia marketing head Anssi Vanjoki purportedly told German magazine Wirtschaftswoche that it wasn't ruling out "an eventual sale of its core handset manufacturing business." It's tough to say how much longer Nokia can rely heavily on Symbian if it wants to maintain its position as #1 in the industry. Many feel that Symbian is dated and aging fast, and it seems that shifting to Maemo 5 quickly would be in Nokia's best interest. Can you imagine what a Droid-level marketing blitz would do for a new OS like Maemo 5? Guess we'll never know--at least not this year or next.