Who are TNS? And FIH think HMD have too many smartphone models! (preliminary 2018 financial report)

Hi everyone, I was looking for more information about TNS and I found FIH Mobile's preliminary financial report for 2018:

Who are TNS? And FIH think HMD have too many smartphone models! (preliminary 2018 financial report)

madbilly madbilly
✭✭✭✭  /  edited March 27
Hi everyone,

I was looking for more information about TNS and I found FIH Mobile's preliminary financial report for 2018: http://www.fihmb.com/investors/Download.aspx?ID=1480

In short (and explained at length in the original collaboration agreement:http://www.fihmb.com/investors/Download.aspx?ID=1201), TNS are the wholly-owned subsidiary of FIH Mobile which was set up to manage the feature phone business which FIH bought from Microsoft in 2016 (with a small part going to HMD). The intention of the strategic partnership was that HMD and TNS would work exclusively together to build the Nokia-branded phones (plus accessories and tablets!) business. TNS would be responsible for things like manufacturing, supply chain management, R&D, running the factory in Vietnam (I think), distribution and execution of marketing campaigns. HMD would have the option to buy TNS during the next 10 years. Some of that has changed recently...

The report's commentary is the interesting part, here are the key points which I think are relevant for those of us following HMD's adventure in the Nokia phones business:
  • FIH will become more selective about which phones it works with HMD on and will start to refuse orders which it thinks have poor margins (note that to date FIH (or TNS, their subsidiary) has made a loss on many models of smartphone for HMD, which I think is a side effect of HMD releasing so many new models of phone in a short period of time, many at similar prices) - it's not clear if this relates only to manufacture or also to other things that TNS works on
  • HMD will no long work exclusively with FIH! They are now pursuing a "multi-ODM" strategy, which means they will now be working with other companies than FIH. We will have to wait and see what this means in practice but it could mean there are more smartphone models, or more variations between the newer models. I think that all models released to date were with FIH, I presume those with other companies will be later this year
  • TNS will no longer be the distributor for HMD's Nokia phones - I presume that HMD took some of this over and I think this is probably the source of the redundancies which various people have been talking about, but I don't know for certain; the rest of TNS's business seems to be intact.
  • The report also contains a commentary on HMD's business, which is useful because AFAIK HMD do not release a similar financial report as they are a private company.
So, is this all a good thing? No, not really, because it means that the Nokia phones business is not as successful as either HMD or FIH had thought it would be. As well as working strategically with HMD, FIH also own part of HMD so it is in their interests for them to succeed - the fact that they are starting to refuse some orders means that things must be quite serious. Any deterioration in HMD's business means that they may not be able to continue releasing software updates for the existing models of phone, or to invest in the kind of innovation we all want to see. We have to hope that the changes to the business model of HMD succeeds in improving things.

One thing is fairly certain though - Nokia themselves are making money out of this, both through patent licensing and royalty fees on every device which HMD sell. Very clever ;)

What are your thoughts on this?

Cheers :)

Comments

  • gaurang patkar gaurang patkar
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    Thats shocking tns had kept hmd global's logo as their profile picture on LinkedIn. I thought they were part of hmd 
  • mohan reddy mohan reddy
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    So did check for the manufacturer of my phone, it is a wholly owned subsidiary of FIH, not TNS. My phone details mentioned the marketer as HMD Global but the consumer complaints are to be addressed to TNS.

    I think how this works is HMD plans devices, TNS works on the R&D and other things (probably software too), FIH manufactures the devices and finally HMD markets them.

    Now, here is a thought, this forum is maintained by HMD Global but software and customer care is presumably handled by TNS. Is this the possible reason for delay in handling our bug reports or problems?
  • gaurang patkar gaurang patkar
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    So did check for the manufacturer of my phone, it is a wholly owned subsidiary of FIH, not TNS. My phone details mentioned the marketer as HMD Global but the consumer complaints are to be addressed to TNS.

    I think how this works is HMD plans devices, TNS works on the R&D and other things (probably software too), FIH manufactures the devices and finally HMD markets them.

    Now, here is a thought, this forum is maintained by HMD Global but software and customer care is presumably handled by TNS. Is this the possible reason for delay in handling our bug reports or problems?
    They are distributors. They aren't involved in R&D. They may collect complains as its part of their job. They play minor part.
  • madbilly madbilly
    ✭✭✭✭  /  edited March 29
    Thanks @petrus ;) Nice article @stipe1906 :smiley:

    @gaurang patkar and @mohan reddy thanks for joining in the discussion. FIH have many factories, their report says which countries they are in. I read reports for previous years too so not all the info about what TNS which I wrote above is in the latest report. I read that TNS manage a factory in Vietnam. FIH's reports say they manufacture smartphones in other factories. The latest report very clearly says that TNS will no longer distribute Nokia phones.

    I think instead of speculating that you have a look at the documents I linked and read Nokiamob's news article - those guys know much more about this than I do.

    About the number of models - personally I am surprised that HMD have made so many different models, but I think this is mainly because they thought that some markets, e.g. China and India, were big enough to support new models by themselves, and then HMD could release these models in other regions to generate more return for these models. However, I think that this has not been as successful as they thought it might be, unfortunately.

    @gaurang patkar I cannot find this company on LinkedIn which uses HMD's logo, please can you paste the link here?

    Where did you find that info about who manufactured your phone etc @mohan reddy?
  • mohan reddy mohan reddy
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    @madbilly That's not rocket science, the address of the manufacturer was mentioned on the box and the marketer and consumer complaints addresses too. My phone also sports a Made in India tag near the Android One tag too. So, it didn't take much to find out.
  • madbilly madbilly
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    @mohan reddy - okay, I will check my box, thanks :)

  • stipe1906 stipe1906
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    You're welcome @madbilly and great find and thanks for the kind words :). I left a comment here yesterday, but the moderation swallowed it I guess.
    If you remember, the first Nokia devices (3, 5 and 6) were really late to the market (announce Feb, on sale in July, with a broader availability in September). And logistics could be the reason why it took Nokia X5 and X6 four months to exit China, and more than a half a year to come to Europe. The demand was there for Nokia 6.1 and 7 plus (both received good reviews).
    TNS is basically dead, and maybe better so because it seems that the HMD-TNS-FIH partnership isn't working that well. With FIH focusing on less devices, and other ODM's on other phones, we might see improvements in time to market and maybe even in volume for upcoming Nokia phones.
    As you know, the 3.2 and 4.2 look like awesome devices for 150-ish euro, but still not on sale. Something is rotten there. 
  • madbilly madbilly
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    Yes, the time from announcement to availability for those first new Nokias was terrible! I thought 2018 was a better year, but I didn''t pay much attention to the X/plus range so didn't notice they took a long time to be available in the rest of the world.

    I would be interested to know anything else you heard about TNS, but I'll be happy to follow your news over on the Nokiamob discussion board if you prefer. It's entirely possible that HMD did buy TNS, or part of it, and that will be revealed in the full FIH report for 2018, or HMD may make a press release about it. I am speculating a lot here!

    About the 3.2 and 4.2, I remember from somewhere that the 4.2 was to be released to stores in April and the 3.2 in May, so I don't necessarily think they are late with these models yet.

    The future for HMD phones is certainly going to be interesting though!

    Cheers :smiley:
  • stipe1906 stipe1906
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    @madbilly
    Will try to find more details, but that could be it. We know that a lot of layoffs happened and that might be because of all the overlapping positions after TNS was absorbed (speculation).
    Yeah, the 4.2 in April, 3.2 in May. Not bad, but it feels like MWC was long ago. The 1 Plus and 9 were pushed quickly, good  job for that. My general point was that the sales would be better if they sell (all of the) the pie while it is hot ;) 
    I'm ok with posting here. Get notifications for both :)

  • madbilly madbilly
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    Nikkei reports (thanks to XDA for the tip) that FIH are scaling back on smartphone business in general, not only the business with HMD. So perhaps what FIH wrote in the annual report was slightly misleading, suggesting that it was HMD's fault whereas in truth FIH have problems making profit on any smartphone business: https://asia.nikkei.com/Spotlight/Tech-scroll-Asia/Foxconn-shrinks-Android-arm-and-relocates-staff-as-orders-dry-up

    As far as I know the agreement between HMD, FIH and Nokia is still in place, but must have been modified to take account of the changes revealed in FIH's report. I'm surprised that HMD have not released any news about it, but maybe they will once they sign a deal with a new partner (if they want to advertise it).
  • singhnsk singhnsk
    ✭✭✭✭  /  edited April 8
    Hi, @madbilly Did TNS Mobile, exist before HMD was founded? I thought it was founded especially to be a dropout which FIH can kick (if needed), and HMD can acquire (if needed). Because well, they have been together since HMD was founded. They kinda share the same offices at various locations. And TNS also handles support for the Nokia phones. I do not know what will change with the recent happenings, but the packaging of most phones mentioned (in India) for complaints - TNS Mobile India Private Limited. Also, any support emails sent to hmd were replied to by emails from the tnsmobile.com domain. This was something I saw in 2017. I haven't sent them another email after that, so I do not know if things have changed. So, TNS is also handling support, which sums that FIH and its subsidiaries are/were doing everything of Nokia phones. And HMD was just an overlooker (or is that too much too?) So, it won't be just too easy to kick away FIH, unless yeah if HMD acquires TNS (but are they financially sound yet to do such a thing)?

    A very honest feedback, I wish Nokia made fewer models. Each model takes its time on the machine, the machine setup costs, uses its own unique spares, separate software development and a different support experience (repair manuals, repair equipment, spares; etc.). Had they made lesser phones, they could have made for cheaper and would have sold more of one model which would have made it easier to support them.
    It is more like I wish they followed the paths of the Chinese. A new brand comes up, starts from zero and becomes famous in a year. All based on a single phone, which they spent enough money on to make it perfect. It's more like their phones do the marketing for themselves. I am not saying that this is a profitable business since many came and departed too. I do not recommend that Nokia sells its phones for the same cheap price, but maybe they can make them at least more attractive by packing some hero features which can keep the buzz going. Apart from that, a lot of models compete with themselves and eat into each other's sales.
    Another thing that I hate is the fact that a phone is launched in some markets 6 or so months later than its first release in a global (Android One) market. It's better to never launch a thing, than launching that outdated model and spending enough on the distribution and support. They themselves know that it won't be able to sell well anymore given the extreme competition in the market.

    FIH also makes questionable comments. If they didn't see something to be profitable (based per the size of the order), why did they go ahead with it and then cry that HMD has caused them not to make profits. In fact, the reports (as shared above) also mention that Google's Pixel is the only product which FIH considers profitable. That means it is none of HMD's fault. FIH, most likely to secure orders, has quoted prices lower than the other ODM so that a company should consider them. That has resulted in them to be left with not enough margins to make profits. The statement will be exactly opposite if HMD gave them an expected demand and sales volume and then pulled away from their expected requirement by a significant degree.

    We now see reports from HMD's Indian head (Ajey) that they are planning to manufacture in India and export. Now I am not sure which all independent ODMs strive here. My worst dream is OPPO getting the orders to manufacture Nokia phones. So, it will at this point be an OPPO with a NOKIA branding. I wouldn't mind if they somehow manage to license their Oxygen OS though and trash the Android One thingy. Promise quarterly updates for cheaper phones and maybe monthly for pricier phones (with more margins) and develop a more feasible business model. The current one is flawed, especially when it comes to the super low-end phones. This is a segment where the users would barely care about the updates, but a lot about the experience and usability. Upgrading the CPU and RAM and dropping the monthly updates would add a lot to the value of these phones.

    Nearly 40-50% of the topics in the forum are feature requests (Dark Mode, Face Unlock, a data speed indicator, scrolling screenshots, call recording, themeing, changing fonts, run dual apps, app locker, a scanner,). This and that. So, why settle with a software which limits you instead of something which can do better? There's a super easy solution to get started - pick that Chinese ROM, add the gapps to it and ship it away. It solves a lot of the feature requests and delivers a more satisfying user experience. I am not saying that lovers of Android One are not there. Surely those who can't afford a Pixel may prefer it. But the number of those who do not need a pixel software experience would easily outnumber the ones who do. Easy answer why Xiaomi runs only one device (yearly) on Android One. If the users so demanded it, they can easily cut away all the software costs and ship Android One which will be much cheaper to develop and deploy. Similar for Motorola (1 Android One phone while nearly all of their devices are very close to stock Android).
  • madbilly madbilly
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    Phew! You write long posts @singhnsk!

    AFAIK TNS were created by FIH to operate the parts of the MS feature phone business which FIH bought and to be the exclusive partner to HMD, as you wrote. HMD aren't doing nothing though, they are the ones that spec the product to be made and are responsible for selling it, AFAIK.

    HMD could make fewer models, I think this is something that many have said. Sometimes HMD phones might be cannibalising sales from one another, but at least in those cases the customer is definitely buying a Nokia; if there were less models then maybe HMD might not have quite the right one at the right price. I would be interested to compare HMD with Samsung, LG, Motorola etc to see which one releases the most models each year.

    More hero features would be nice, and I think we will see more this year.

    Time to market is a problem, but I presume they only do it if they think they will sell enough to make it worthwhile. Maybe we will see less of that this year, if it wasn't cost effective in the past.

    I think HMD manufacturing phones in India for export will only happen if it makes economic sense. Lots of countries have trade agreements with China but less with India, so the customs charges may make it difficult to export smartphones made in India.

    I have absolutely zero interest in HMD licensing another Android flavour from another Android phone manufacturer. The only Android flavours I would be interested in are /e/ and maybe LineageOS. In non-Android options I would love to see Sailfish OS and driver support for all the non-commercial projects which are around (Ubuntu Touch, Plasma Mobile, LuneOS, postmarketOS, etc etc etc).

    Interesting point about dropping Android One and adding more features from the China ROM, I think we might see this with the Taiwan/Global version of the X71.
  • MobileCR MobileCR
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    HMD's strategy is not paying off. HMD should only focus in the premium segment (as the REAL nokia was up to just months before creating HMD when lauched the N1 tablet with Z launcher) Nokia Corp was only to focus in the high end segment BUT executives decided not to and HMD finally get rid of those initial plans..so instead decided to focus on cheap and midrange phones that do not offer profit for FIH and HMD...I DO hope HMD CPO and his team wake up and see their dumb decisions are only causing them trouble so they can refocus and bring A TRUE NOKIA experience. I am glad FIH has decided to be more selective about what to produce from HMD.
  • singhnsk singhnsk
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    @MobileCR I agree on what you have said, but I don't think HMD currently has or previously had any specific ways to differentiate its phones from the competition. I mean, you need a flagship as the best of the best to make a mark in the market. After all you charge a premium price for it. And probably it is not possible for a new company to come out and do something so unique that a pricey device starts attracting the buyers.
    HMD did produce the 8 Sirocco but it did not sell well. Probably because there was nothing which made the device special apart from the design and the built.
    I do agree that HMD should try more on building a great flagship. Probably one fine day that will happen with a great design, newest CPU and a lot of thoughts into the software.
  • madbilly madbilly
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    The truth is that there isn't as much money to be made in flagship phones - yes you can charge a high price and probably get a larger margin per device, but the volumes are much much smaller than mid-range and budget phones. Even though the margins are smaller and the competition more fierce at that price level, the larger volumes will allow more profit to be made overall. I bet that the Sirocco is one of the phones which FIH made a loss on because they didn't shift enough units to make it profitable, yet the reason we keep seeing HMD bring out a new mid-range phone every 6 months is because they can sell enough to make that rapid change worthwhile.

    Nokia always made a phone for everyone, every budget, so I can see why HMD want to do the same thing. However, a great flagship is necessary to get exposure. I agree that I don't really think HMD have a USP yet, although I think they believe that Android One, 3 years of security updates and better build quality are enough to distinguish them.
  • MobileCR MobileCR
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    singhnsk said:
    @MobileCR I agree on what you have said, but I don't think HMD currently has or previously had any specific ways to differentiate its phones from the competition. I mean, you need a flagship as the best of the best to make a mark in the market. After all you charge a premium price for it. And probably it is not possible for a new company to come out and do something so unique that a pricey device starts attracting the buyers.
    HMD did produce the 8 Sirocco but it did not sell well. Probably because there was nothing which made the device special apart from the design and the built.
    I do agree that HMD should try more on building a great flagship. Probably one fine day that will happen with a great design, newest CPU and a lot of thoughts into the software.
    When Nokia corporation announced it was about to something and reenter the smartpjone market they said Nokia technologies would be there to help the business in partnership with FIH...and you know how capable the technologies division team is .then it was expected to have HMD phones with the latest cutting edge tech and innovations developed by the REAL Nokia. Sadly HMD started doing such stupid moves and brought mid-range and low end phones and when tried to launch a high end phone (8 sirocco, 8, 9 PureView) it is clear that they acted as if they were trying to develop tech innovations by themselves...as if Nokia technologies was not there to help them. Just look as HMD's mediocre "PureDisplay" tech...it is years behind Nokia's former and really exclusive "PureMotion+" and "Clear black" technology for their handsets' displays. HMD has disappointed many loyal customers of the good old days when Nokia was in the business
  • singhnsk singhnsk
    ✭✭✭✭  /  edited April 19
    Well, we do not know what is happening in the backend, but what we have seen is that Nokia Technologies isn't so competitive either and might have failed the same way. Don't forget that they bought Withings to do great in Digital Health and related consumer electronics. But after burning money for a while, they gave it back to the same owner for much cheaper.
    It is kinda easy to say that the company should do this or that. We never know if Nokia Technologies offered them any help. Since HMD will be a licensee of that concerned patent/technology, they would have to render royalty payments to Nokia Corporation. And we do not know how much was Nokia's asking price to offer that tech, or if they ever put it to offer or not.
    If HMD can license the OZO Audio, then they could also license ClearBlack and PureMotion HD plus or even the original PureView camera tech. All depends on the intention of original Nokia + the asking price + the price to get working products based on that tech + the returns on the investment.
    For example, buying a normal readymade display panel from an XYZ ODM (example Sharp) is much easier and cheaper than having those manufactured exclusively for yourself with your kind of technology (PureMotion/CBD). Since HMD are small, their total units shipped are nowhere near to the likes of others. Smaller orders would mean more to be paid per unit of the output, and that will eventually increase the total bill of materials. In fact, any company which agrees to build something exclusively for you would ask for a minimum lot size without which it will not setup the machines for you. We have already heard that Nokia/HMD has always had production issues with not enough priority on the machines as their order sizes are/were smaller.
    I wish conducting businesses in a competitive environment was so easy :(

    @madbilly Those can be the distinguishing factors as long as you can complete those promises well. We see them falling apart for now. From shipping updates in the first week to the first half and now to the last week of the month (and also delaying them to next months, or not shipping them at all) is telling us that the maintenance is such a hard task. They better not promise such a thing. Drop that promise Quarterly but at least be responsible for it.
    If they work well, add some great camera output to these devices and they will sell well. As always, the devices are great! They are always a good combination, just not having a specific USP. They are good, just not outstanding. They miss on something which would get the world to talk, maybe just not in a situation right now.
    If we look at how Oppo/Vivo/OnePlus did, after several years of producing generic products with poor quality and high spending on marketing, they have finally arrived at a stage wherein they can distinguish themselves with probably more innovation than Apple. Maybe HMD will do better when they manage to get some profits aside to spend on R&D. The path will be hard, super hard.. and they need to carry the consumer confidence and keep the heart beating.
  • madbilly madbilly
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    This point about Nokia Technologies is an interesting one and one worth asking HMD about in person if we ever get the chance again! (or someone can, it doesn't need to be us... preferably an investigative journalist from the likes of the Nokiamob! Or you in in your former life Singh ;)).

    Cheers :)
  • Muser Muser
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    singhnsk said:
    @MobileCR I agree on what you have said, but I don't think HMD currently has or previously had any specific ways to differentiate its phones from the competition.
    Android One might be an issue here. Because of this HMD has to focus almost entirely on hardware to differentiate their devices, not just among other OEM's but their own offerings as well. There's a natural limit to hardware features and unlike Nokia's heyday, the market is catching up faster than ever before on hardware innovation. Just look at how quickly "hole punch" displays are coming to market.

    At the end of the day, no OEM has successfully built a business on offering stock or near stock Android to consumers. Even Google is on their third attempt (Motorola, Nexus, Pixel) to make it work but unlike HMD, they have deep pockets and can afford to fail many more times.
  • madbilly madbilly
    ✭✭✭✭  /  edited April 23
    @Muser I think Android One by itself is not a USP, but having all models being stock in some way and committing to 2 years of OS updates and 3 years of security updates does distinguish HMD from other "stock" Android phone brands. The problem is that this is not enough to capture the hearts and minds of consumers (although it might be sufficient for TelCos and corporates purchasers).

    Thanks for @Kartik Gada and @akilesh I learnt from LoveNokia.net that HMD have already found at least one new manufacturer - Huaqin in Shanghai will build the TA-1184 Nokia Wasp: https://www.lovenokia.net/2019/04/nokia-wasp-ta-1184-passes-fcc-new-odm-to-manufacture-the-device.html

    What this doesn't tell us is if this manufacturer will also do the software. Does anyone know anything about Huaqin? What other phones have they made? Do they so software integration too?

    As well as software I am concerned to see how build quality will turn out.

    Cheers :)
  • madbilly madbilly
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    FIH have released their full 2018 report, see attached with highlighted parts relating to HMD (thanks to @Themightym and @stipe1906 for that idea from Nokiamob.net ;)).

    There's not much new, but to me this report is clearer that TNS shut down their logistics and distribution business which I think means that HMD must have taken this over - either by purchasing those parts of TNS or through some other arrangement. If HMD didn't do this, then they would have had to set up their own logistics and distribution organisation or found a new parter to do this - either of which would have been very difficult to do in a short amount of time, although possible.

    Cheers :)
  • singhnsk singhnsk
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    @madbilly The security promise can be a distinguishing factor, IF, enough consumers cared about a security patch. The truth of the day is that they do not. Probably not more than 10% buyers of the Nokia phones also  care about a security patch. Because smartphone OSes already have enough loopholes that private data gets easily picked up by third parties. Then even those security patches don't always addresses very severe issues. They are generally ones which can cause a security breach in certain circumstances. Again, I don't think anybody really cares about them. If people really did, then we wouldn't have the market in the hands of those who don't push out such updates at all or push them after periods long enough that the updates are better not sent. A different story is for the Android OS update. Even this one is more important only for stock Android users, otherwise OEMs have modified the Android enough that even their older version gets more features and user satisfaction than the latest stock one from Google.
    I believe the updates can be a value addition to your product, but never a feature which you can really sell a device on. Except for a small group of consumers which do seriously care for the updates. I know one such person. He was all set to make a jump to Nokia, but then the news filled with these evenwell issues makes him feel that this is a bloated phone even though marketed as stock. So, he decided to not buy it even though he needs security updates.

    Switching the ODM is okay, I have a minor doubt on the story though, because it is a prototype only. The final production might still be done by FIH? Or is it necessary that whoever does the proto also does the final product? It also can be split across multiple ODMs like how Xiaomi does and in that case, get ready to see same Nokia phone with different quality.
    I still need to know how these phones will be flashed from the factory and how repair operations will be carried out. FIH Mobile was doing the software which was bundled as a nb0 package which a care center would flash using the OST tool. Now that somebody else is manufacturing it, it is likely that they won't have access to FIH's framework. If that happens, then first of all how does the factory flash it? And how will the service center operations be carried out? FIH continues to offer service via their software? If not, the care centers are getting more mess. Different flashing tools and different flashing guides for the different devices.
    One interesting fact to add to this is that the newest Nokia phones (the 4.2 and Nokia 3.2) never appeared on the FIH servers. This can currently suggest that FIH did not do anything in relation to the software on these phones. I hope I'm right, I didn't personally check, just rephrasing someone else's words 😁
  • singhnsk singhnsk
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    madbilly said:
    FIH have released their full 2018 report, see attached with highlighted parts relating to HMD (thanks to @Themightym and @stipe1906 for that idea from Nokiamob.net ;)).

    There's not much new, but to me this report is clearer that TNS shut down their logistics and distribution business which I think means that HMD must have taken this over - either by purchasing those parts of TNS or through some other arrangement. If HMD didn't do this, then they would have had to set up their own logistics and distribution organisation or found a new parter to do this - either of which would have been very difficult to do in a short amount of time, although possible.

    Cheers :)
    I think setting up logistics would be a little easier, but the same level of service network much more tougher. So, they indeed needed TNS, else all the existing service network goes out of their hands. So, yeah I'll vote for the same that they have probably acquired it or made a different arragement with FIH. I believe HMD has itself had hands in expanding the service network at least in India, even though it operated under the TNS brand.
  • madbilly madbilly
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    Yes the OS updates for Android recently have not been much more than a fresh coat of paint, not many new features were added. Other OEMs OSes may be better, but honestly I've not had much chance to test them.
    We are learning that there is no such thing as "stock" Android, it doesn't exist anymore (it only ever existed on the Nexus phones, and even then there were a few Google specific things which were not in AOSP).
    I think that is Huaqin make the prototype they will make the production versions; however I don't know if FIH were named as the manufacturer on earlier phones - maybe @Kartik Gada can confirm since they broke the news about Huaqin?
    Good point about servicing, this will get messy with different ODMs - but maybe this will just make them more like Europe where very few brands have dedicated centres anymore, instead many brands share the services of a chain of third-party care centres, and they manage fine with multiple flashing tools etc - in many ways they are more knowledgeable and better able to diagnose faults because of it. Flashing-wise I believe that HMD will have to develop their own tools which may even mean they start to own the phone software more, which will be a good thing for new models but may be bad for older ones if FIH become reluctant to maintain them.
    Interesting about the 3.2 and 4.2. Is that also the case for the 8110 4G?
    Cheers :smiley:
  • madbilly madbilly
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    The latest news from @hikari calyx is that the 3.2 and 4.2 are actually made by Wingtech! But still with some software made by FIH (he said the upper layers, and since the lower layers would normally come from the SoC supplier I'm left wondering what bits are left for anyone else to do), although OST LA does not work... all very interesting and thought provoking. A quick scan of wikipedia reveals that Wingtech have made phones for Samsung, Xiaomi and LYF, probably others too.
    All this makes me wonder if the 8.1 is somehow not entirely the work of FIH as well. Does anyone have any idea?
  • singhnsk singhnsk
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    @madbilly The Nokia 8.1 should be an entirely FIH phone from what I've seen. Similarly, the X71 looks quite a lot like done by FIH as well (even though there is counter information); because it uses the exact same software structure and bootloader from the Nokia 7 Plus. In fact can unlock the bootloader the same way as the Nokia 7 Plus. It looks to me like a brother of 7 Plus with a new clothing 😅
    As for these new phones, I did discover that TSMT handles indian manufacturing. So, it could just be several ODMs working together.
    I am pretty confident when I say that the software is being done by HMD now; and they have acquired a part of FIH's team along with TNS Mobile Oy.  A website I referred lists HMD Global Oy as the ultimate parent of TNS Mobile Oy. I guess that's the reason why software format looks like that of FIH's, but since all of the Evenwell apps are gone and the full firmware is no longer the FIH's NB0 file and OST LA has retired from Nokia, I think that FIH's role in software is now done.
  • madbilly madbilly
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    Hi @singhnsk thanks for the inside information! :smiley:
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