Nokia’s multimedia plans show mobile users the door

Nokia Corp. revealed its new online multimedia strategy on Wednesday, and showed mobile users the door. It also unveiled a range of new phones for playing games and music, and demonstrated a new user interface for future multimedia phones.

Ovi, the Finnish word for door, is Nokia’s new umbrella brand for online gaming, music, mapping and social networking services, and also the name of a portal where they will appear. The portal, accessible from a mobile phone or a PC, will also be open to other vendors’ services, executives said at a news conference, held in a former fish market in London.

The first service to appear on the site, from November, will be an updated version of Nokia’s mobile gaming platform, N-Gage Arena, which currently works only with the company’s N-Gage mobile game consoles, but will soon work with other Nokia devices too.

“We believe it will become the largest online gaming platform by far,” said Anssi Vanjoki, Nokia’s general manager for multimedia.

The strategy is to make the service compatible with many of Nokia’s existing N-Series multimedia phones, and all future N-Series models based on the S60 software platform. Nokia had originally promised game developers 6 million users of the service, but has only managed to deliver 3 million so far, Vanjoki said.

Game publishers including Capcom Co. Ltd., Electronic Arts Inc. and Gameloft Inc. have pledged support for the service, he said. Nokia will offer free trials of the games on Ovi, which can then be bought for between

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