Tuesday 2 June 2015

[News] New Sailfish OS phone manufacturer confirmed

Jolla's Antti Saarnio at Hong Kong launch event, 2014
New manufacturer of Sailfish OS phones is announced before summer holidays

Jolla might not announce a new phone of their own, as they are focused on delivering Sailfish OS mobile operating system to other manufacturers.

Update: New Sailfish OS phone manufacturer is located in India, and it will be announced during Mobile World Congress Shanghai on July 15 - 17, 2015

[News] New Sailfish OS phone manufacturer confirmed

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Phone sales from last year were a clear disappointment, but Jolla is looking forward for the future of their operating system. It'll be free to 3rd party manufacturers, as the revenue is expected from sales made through devices

Jolla phone did not sell as expected on 2014, but that doesn't seem to be a serious issue among the Sailors on the board. Jolla has confirmed that there will be another manufacturer using their independent operating system Sailfish OS, and this manufacturer will be announced already "before summer holidays".

Unfortunately I didn't get additional information from Jolla at this point, other that according to Juhani Lassila, the information about the manufacturer is published "shorty".

My personal bets are placed to India, where there are several phone manufacturing companies and a huge market. But also for example OnePlus is looking for other operating systems to enter the markets in India, after it was denied to ship Cyanogen-powered phones by court. Micromax has an exclusive deal with Cyanogen that prevents any other company from selling Cyanogen-powered devices in India. OnePlus could still ship their upcoming OnePlus Two to India as well, just using different software on board.
Update, June 13th 2015: A settlement has been reached between OnePlus and Micromax, and new smartphone models in India are running Oxygen OS (Android) out of the box, but can be flashed to Cyanogenmod12 with full update support and warranty. This reduces the possibility that OnePlus Two, announced on July 2015, would be shipped running on Sailfish OS. Phone manufacturers located in India are more probable candidates in this upcoming announcement.

It's also been suspected that we might see YotaPhone running on Sailfish OS after it was seen in hands of Russian minister Nikolai Nikiforov. However, both of these possibilities are pure speculation, and what we actually know is only that Jolla is expanding in BRICS countries with their operating system, and that we'll soon hear more.

News mentioning a new manufacturer was first shared by Finnish business magazine Kauppalehti, interviewing Antti Saarnio in an article concentrated on the financial situation of the company. Additional to negative news on the phone sales, there are positive expectations regarding the operating system Sailfish OS. Below, you can find the full article translated from Finnish:

Translated news via Kauppalehti
originally published in Finnish at June 2nd, 2015 16:14 UTC

Sales estimates at Jolla didn't come true. Only tens of thousands of phones were sold last year.

Telephone company Jolla, set up by Nokia's former employees, had 4.1 million in net sales according to information supplied by Jolla to the Trade Register of Finland.

Similarly named smartphone Jolla went on sale in late 2013. Tomi Pienimäki told in November 2013 that the goal was to sell one million phones during the following year. Earlier, there was talk of hundreds of thousands.

The figures went heavily into the woods. The initial price of the phone was 400 euros. If Jolla received from one phone to, say, a hundred euros, that would mean 40 000 phones sold last year. Even estimating the profit to much lower per phone, sales would still be within tens of thousands of pieces.

Shareholders' equity amounted at the end of 2014 was half a million euros, funds at EUR 56,000. Operating profit was EUR 10.2 million negative.

Price competition too heavy

Antti Saarnio, Chairman of the Board at Jolla, granted that phone sales were expected to be higher than what was realized. He still didn't identify the source as exact sales volumes.
"These numbers are useless to go into, because our strategy has completely changed. The focus is now on our operating system Sailfish OS and its licensing."
"We have certainly learned that a young start-up shouldn't run with two strategies at the same time. Price competition on the phone markets was too fierce and hardware development too fast for us."
According to Saarnio, the financial position has been resolved after the end of the year, and the investors are not looking at the phone sales figures.
"After the end of the year we received more than ten million euros investment. The company's value rose to $160 million on the basis of the financing round", Saarnio says.
"When one takes a look at the stock exchange listing of technology companies, the valuation for a few years old company is very good."
Sailfish OS development takes about 20 million euros per year according to Saarnio. He promises that the first external phone manufacturer using Sailfish OS will be announced before the summer holidays.

Jolla gives Sailfish OS to phone manufacturers for free. The revenue is taken as a proportion of online sales made through the devices.
"Earnings are not expected soon, so as a start-up we take in more funding all the time. A new round of financing is currently on going", Saarnio says.

The new smartphone model?

Jolla has recently reported that Russia will begin to build their own operating system based on Sailfish. Sailfish ecosystem is also being built up in Africa.

Will there be a new smartphone model from Jolla?
"We do not rule it out, but we no longer seek to be an equipment manufacturer in a large scale. We continue making spearhead products such as our Tablet."

Share and Shout! Your friends might read it.

Originally published in Finnish by Kauppalehti
Translated to English by Simo Ruoho, Review Jolla

Disclaimer: Translated part of this article was translated as it was available in Finnish on June 2nd, 16:14 UTC. Any possible updates to the original article are not translated. Translated part has been checked with Jolla before publishing.

Via: Kauppalehti
Published: 2015-06-03 14:13 UTC
Updated: 2015-07-07 20:05 UTC


  1. OnePlus is already well-known to be working on it's own Android flavour...
    I hope you're right though, don't want Yota to be their only ODM, too dodgy to their reputation.

  2. It's always been about the sw, I'm glad they're finally going to be much focused on sw & services. For too long usability & stability/bugs have been too much of an issue, not polished enough for a mass-market product. Don't worry about reaching feature parity with major platforms, that'll come slowly over time, focus on rock-solid stability, security, & performance. And hurry-up & open up the entire sw stack (except for maybe some elements of the services), that'll make your whole dev process FAR more efficient!

  3. I have been waiting for the last two years to get a top spec Chinese phone with Sailfish!!!!

    1. You could be waiting longer, everything we've heard lately suggests it's most likely to be Indian or Russian, I really hope it's not Russian (Yota etc), but if it is I hope there's another OEM in the pipeline that's not Russian.

      It won't look good for Jolla's image if they're seen as too tightly in cahoots with Putin's government, it's okay if they to have "only" a Russian hw partner for a little while, but if it drags on for too long it'll start to hurt them.

  4. I was waiting for the next st00pid Amurican to step in...

    If the phone is made by the Russkies, what's the prob!? I mean they have demonstrated concisely through the time they are better at engineering than amuricans, so what?

    Take your amurican way of seeing things everywhere else.

    1. There’s no need to be rude, did I say I’d prefer it to be an American phone? It’s not a bi-polar word, your POV seems to be very skewed/myopic.
      If you'd bothered doing some research before launching insults, the only reason I have a problem with it being Russian is the following, read the posts from there onwards:

      Now it's well known that there's currently a BIG fight between the big American companies & their own government.
      Because their government doesn't want them to use high-grade encryption, but those big companies (apple/google/ms etc) refuse to agree.
      Why? Because they’re afraid of losing credibility/market-share in the WW market (they have been rocked by all the NSA stuff).

      The difference in the situation with the Russian Sailfish device, is that even if encryption is used (which I doubt) there's likely to be an exploit or back-door through that encryption.
      The Russian gov't has been quite open about it, & the reasons they've used for why it's necessary are quite ridiculous (that thread touches on them but you'll need to do some further reading).
      I have zero problems with Russian people, the Russian people are great, I have some Russian & Ukrainian friends, but there's absolutely no doubt that there's MAJOR issues with the current leadership.

      As I said, no problem with Russian Sailfish device/hw (likely Yota) initially, but it's important that they get some diversity into their partner portfolio ASAP.
      Even so-called "allies" of Russia (not necessarily) from the BRICS (& observer) countries, won't exactly embrace a device like this.
      Jolla needs to have other hw partners from other countries/regions e.g: India/China/EU/US/SK/Brazil etc.

      And by the way I'm not a "st00opid American", I'm not even from that region, I'm in SouthEastAsia.
      Unfortunately, the only person that seems to be blinded by hate & not the facts here -is you…

    2. Now if you're not in Russia & you want to buy a Russian Sailfish device (most likely Yota), that certainly would be less of a concern, perhaps even preferable (just depends on how closed their flavour of Sailfish is), as it's very unlikely the Russ. gov't is interested in spying on citizens in other countries on a large scale (though that could change over time), they likely only want to monitor/control their own people.

    3. I hope we can keep "st00pid" out of discussions on this blog, so that I can feel confident about keeping the commenting open also for all anonymous posters. Politics and cultures are both interesting topics, but also sensitive ones, so let's have both tolerance and respect towards everyone. While writing, even anonymous, please write as your name and face were attached to the post, knowing it'll probably be seen by thousands.

      Back to the topic, I'm adding Alcatel (originally French, now Chinese-American-French-International, about to be bought by Nokia, Finland) to the list of candidates to introduce a Sailfish OS phone. However, YotaPhone, OnePlus, Alcatel or any Indian manufacturer mentioned are, at this point, only rumors or guesses. Who you'd think to be the best candidate? IMO the product itself has the major importance, followed by company and country/countries. Pushing Alcatel on top in my personal list for now.

    4. Apparently you know nothing about ALCATEL. Phone manufacturer mark ALCATEL is ownejd by chinese TCL company, which has nothing to do with Alcatel-Lucent network equipment (base stations for carriers) manufacturer that Nokia acquired not long ago.

    5. Huh? I never said there won't be other potential players like that...

  5. My bet: FairPhone 2
    It's modular hardware wise and will allow multiple OSes, too. It even has "TOH capabilities"!

    1. But they've already clearly said they're using Android?
      Would be damn sweet though, they've actually beaten google to the punch with a decently modular phone.
      Doesn't look as impressive as Ara all-up, but pretty damn close.