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Gartner: Symbian faces uphill struggle

Gartner: Symbian faces uphill struggle

Nokia's Symbian platform is soon to be updated, but questions as to whether it will be able to claw back market share from its booming rivals have been posed by Nick Jones of leading mobile industry analysis specialsts Gartner.

Mr Jones disclosed his scepticism over the operating system's continued relevance to smartphone fans in a blog post, in which he posited that the growing challenge from rival platforms had made Nokia's effort seem increasingly outmoded.

He stated: "The rate at which Symbian is losing share is accelerating. That's not to say that Symbian won't remain the dominant platform for a few years more, but it does mean that the competition – especially Android – is catching up very fast.

"The main reason Symbian is losing share is the user experience which isn't competitive with Apple or Android. Based on the early previews I've seen, Symbian 3 looks to have polished a few of the rough edges, but doesn't fix the problem."

Mr Jones went on to criticise the focus of the Symbian Foundation, saying that it was investing in "stuff that really doesn't matter" while failing to grasp the real issues that need addressing.

"The situation is now serious enough that any developer who isn't working on something directly related to a new UI is wasting their time. I think the Foundation needs a contingency plan in case the planned S4 interface isn't radical enough or good enough," said Mr Jones.

In a final damning statement, the analyst compared the Symbian platform to a sinking ship and described the foundation as doing little more than reorganising the seating on-board.

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