The problem with being a pioneer is that everyone wants to imitate you. Imitation might be the greatest form of flattery, but it can be hard on the balance sheets. Ask the head honchos at Apple.
First the ubiquitous iPod was copied left, right and centre. All right, copied may be a strong word, but inspired all the same. In fact, that's the same excuse Bollywood music composers use when people find amazing similarities between tunes ''composed'' by them, and those composed many years earlier. You do get the drift, don't you?
Then Ericsson tied up with Napster to deliver a music service quite similar to Apple's popular iTunes. (See: iTunes has a competitor in the UK: Napster on Ericsson mobile phones)
Now comes the news that the biggest manufacturer of mobile phones in the world, Finnish giant Nokia, is going to emulate the Apple iPhone's revolutionary touch screen interface in its own product, innovatively titled the ''Tube''. This announcement comes after Samsung, LG, HTC, and Sony Ericsson have planned similar fully touch-sensitive mobile phones.
Plans for this product were unveiled at Evans Data Developer Relations Conference in Redwood City, California. While lecturing at conference, vice president of Forum Nokia, Tom Libretto has confirmed the development of the Nokia Tube.
However, Nokia is taking care to pack in more goodies into the Tube 5800. For one, unlike the iPhone, it will support Java in addition to the latest Symbian 60 operating system. Besides, it is also expected to feature a 3.2-inch touch screen display, 3.2-mega- pixel camera with auto-focus, Global Positioning System (GPS) transceiver, a 3.5mm headphone jack and TV-output port for a wide-screen view.
The Tube 5800 is expected to have Wi-Fi capability, as well as 3G HSDPA with Bluetooth. It would work on both GSM and CDMA networks. However, these specifications have not been confirmed.
Compared to that, the iPhone has a relatively underpowered 2-mega-pixel camera and no GPS connectivity. Also, it operates only on GSM networks at present, although plans are afoot for a CDMA version.