HMD Acquires PureView Trademark from Microsoft

Posted on August 26, 2018 by Paul Thurrott in Mobile, Android with 17 Comments

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Here’s some exciting news for fans of Nokia: HMD, which now creates Nokia-branded smartphones, has acquired the PureView trademark from Microsoft.

This change comes a year after HMD partnered with old Nokia partner ZEISS on imaging technology for its smartphones. So it appears that HMD is getting the Nokia imaging gang back together again. So to speak.

Nokia used its PureView brand on a variety of Windows phones, including the Lumia 930, 1020, 1520, and 930/Icon, though it debuted on the Nokia 808 PureView handset. The brand has always stood for camera quality, and Nokia’s PureView-based phones once provided the best overall camera experience in the smartphone market.

Those days, of course, are long past: Modern smartphones from Google, Apple, and Samsung provide far better picture quality than was possible when the Lumia brand was still a thing. But this trademark acquisition suggests that HMD at least wishes to play off nostalgia for PureView as a brand, much as it is already doing with the Nokia brand. And perhaps it has bigger plans than that.

I found out about this story from Neowin, which found out it about it from Nokiamob, which in turn found out about it from EUIPO.


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Comments (17)

17 responses to “HMD Acquires PureView Trademark from Microsoft”

  1. ponsaelius

    So far Nokia have played a mid-range strategy in developing markets and Europe. Although flagship phones make the most noise for reviewers and tech lovers the "normals" buy the mid-rangers in numbers that make the profits. No one can accuse the Google Pixel of being a mass seller.

    The Nokia brand at the moment seems to be trading on it being a Nokia, a much loved brand outside the USA, and having Android One certification. Thus it's crapware free. From a zero standing start HMD are selling reasonable numbers of the devices.

    Cameras on these mid-rangers haven't turned heads yet. I picked up a Nokia 7 Plus for myself and it fails on almost every flagship criteria starting with its Snapdragon 660. However, I don't play games on my device and it's mostly fast enough. The 3800mah battery is an all day no recharge experience. All day battery life eludes most of the high end devices.

    Getting the Pureview name back and the Zeiss optics in the 2018 devices are positive moves going forward. I wouldn't expect to see much from the US market as it seems locked down with Apple/Samsung duo.

    Nokia, as a brand, is certainly more recognisable than Microsoft in mobile.

  2. Tony Tsobanis

    I can understand buying the Nokia brand, as its instantly recognisable by many, but Pureview? Complete waste of money

  3. SvenJ

    I don't know. I'm not sure any camera yet can match the Lumia 1020 in raw capability and software support. It was painfully slow and got slower as time went on, but the photos, and what you could do with the data was stunning. If the guys that produced that hardware and software are available to HMD, that would be encouraging. MS cut them loose. I just wish Google would get it and bring them into Pixel/Fi.

  4. LocalPCGuy

    It looks like the original story, which was picked up and passed on several times, is wrong. Microsoft never owned the rights to PureView. They licensed the rights. The original owner Nokia has now transferred ownership of the trademark to HMD. It doesn't have anything to do with Microsoft, other than they were possibly informed that the real owner of the trademark is now HMD and any license extension, should Microsoft want to do so, must be negotiated with HMD.

  5. lwetzel

    And I found out about it from Paul Thurrott …… ;)

  6. Lewk

    I recently have purchased a Nokia 6.1 and am sad to say the camera is garbage. I have come from a Lumia 950 and knew what I was getting myself into buying a midrange phone, but hoped for a little better camera quality. The phone itself is very nice though.

  7. glenn8878

    More companies should buy Microsoft’s discarded products.

  8. rmlounsbury

    I recently switched to the Nokia 7 Plus and am generally pleased with the device. I haven't really given the camera a proper spin but I'd imagine it takes OK pictures but not what you'd get on the major flagships.

    But, at the end of the day, I'm OK with that anyways. Being able to have a quality phone that ticks most the boxes but is missing a few features or may not have elite level performance isn't that big of a deal. The N7+ keeps up with my daily usage which is mostly productivity focused without any problems. For quick snapshots the camera works; if I really want to take a great picture I have a fine Sony Alpha DSLR. Almost of equal importance is the speed at which Nokia gets updates to their devices. No flagship manufacturer can match Nokia for security and feature updates to their phones (save for Google who, ya know, owns the platform). Extra bonus to being my first Android device in ages that can go all day without being critically low on battery.

    Most importantly the N7+ gives me a great phone that covers all my main use cases for roughly $670 less than the current flagships. I could buy two N7+'s for that price difference!

    If they did try to produce a Lumia 1020-esque device with ridiculous camera stats and flagship quality devices that would be great. It certainly wouldn't hurt though there isn't a massive market for smartphone photography nerds.