Late Thursday, Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN), maker of the Kindle Fire tablet computer, and Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) – one of the world’s largest mapping companies and a prominent mobile handset manufacturer – are apparently in a deal to include Nokia’s mapping feature on the new Kindle Fire, which is expected to be unveiled next week. The story comes from Reuters and quotes a couple of anonymous sources.
The sources also said that Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) will add some sort of location capability to the Kindle Fire, besides just the mapping features of Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK), which has grown since the company’s 2007 acquisition of Navteq. The seemingly noteworthy aspect is that Amazon chose Nokia’s service rather than the ever-popular Google Maps feature by Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG), which has seen its Maps feature get bumped off Apple’s new iOS operating system for its new devices in favor of its own proprietary mapping service.
Google Inc. (NASDAQ:GOOG) does have a 7-inch tablet, the Nexus 7, that is a direct competitor to the Kindle Fire, which began selling for $199 last fall and is a smaller and much cheaper tablet than the iPad from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL). Nokia Corporation (NYSE:NOK) has developed a solid mapping service in recent years on its mobile phones – especially its smartphones – and this seems to be a way for Nokia to get into the tablet market, which some research firms indicate will double in size in the coming year.
Many analysts expect that Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) may unveil not just a new Kindle Fire – now that the original version has completely sold out, he company announced today – but perhaps a larger Kindle that would be a direct competitor to the iPad from Apple Inc. (NASDAQ:AAPL) – at about the same time that Apple seems primed to unveil its 7-inch iPad Mini, which was expected to be a direct competitor with the Kindle Fire and the Nexus 7.
So it appears that even Amazon.com Inc. (NASDAQ:AMZN) is getting territorial with its tablet – welcoming Nokia Corporation 9NYSE:NOK) to the party, but leaving out Google.