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Nokia's Ovi Maps headed to Windows Mobile and Android? (update: no way)

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Put your skeptic hats on kids 'cause we've got a juicy one for you. When Greig Williams, Nokia's General Manager for South East Europe, was asked by the German language Die Presse whether Ovi Maps would be coming to Android and Windows Mobile he responded very simply, "That will be the next step." Well then, that's pretty clear... but as much as we'd like to believe it, we simply can't pin our hopes to this statement alone.

Remember, Nokia's motivation for making its Ovi Maps service free was to sell more handsets; not handsets from its competitors but high-margin smartphones from Nokia in an effort to boost its profits. And unless it can pump out the Android version before Google Navigation goes global, there won't be much motivation to download a presumably fee-based (it certainly won't be free) Ovi Maps on the platform unless Android users are willing to pay to have Nokia's localized maps on the device instead of downloading them over the air as the Google offering requires. Besides, is Nokia really going to dedicate staff to Android development when its more advanced Ovi Maps still aren't available on its much touted Maemo MeeGo mobile computing platform? Not likely. Regarding "Windows Mobile," well, 6.x's days are numbered and getting Ovi Maps approved on Windows Phone 7 might not ever happen in light of Microsoft's own efforts with Bing navigation. Of course, Greig offers no dates, and on a long enough time line anything is possible. We've already contacted Nokia for clarification and will update you just as soon as we hear back.

Update: Nokia just got back to us with an unsurprising response: "have spoken to Greig and he absolutely didn't make that statement. As I understand it, this has now been, or in the process of being, taken down by the Die Presse journalist at their site." So much for that.

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