STOCKHOLM -(Dow Jones)- Nokia Corp. (NOK) is seeing shortages of its much-hyped N90 camera phone due to strong initial demand, a spokesman told Dow Jones Newswires Monday.
The Nokia N90, which features a digital camera with a lens from renowned manufacturer Carl Zeiss, is the first in a series of handsets designed to reinvigorate Nokia's product range at the top end of the market.
The spokesman said, however, that the company doesn't want to draw too far-reaching conclusions from the initial strong demand.
"We're still in the early days of selling the product," said Kari Tuutti, spokesman for Nokia's Multimedia unit which makes the N90.
Tuutti said the product went on sale worldwide July 20.
Nokia has marketed the N-series strongly in the second quarter ahead of the sales start. The Multimedia division doubled its spending to EUR220 million in the second quarter from the first, mostly due to the N-series marketing.
The next phone in the series, the N91, will feature a music player that is set to compete with similar products from Sony Ericsson, Motorola Inc. (MOT) and Samsung Electronics Co. (005930.SE).
The Finnish company faces particularly stiff competition in the high end from those three rivals.
Sony Ericsson, a joint venture of Sweden's Telefon AB LM Ericsson and Japan's Sony Corp. (SNE), Monday announced further additions to a growing range of mobile phones with music players that are sold under Sony's Walkman brand.
The W550, in addition to having a music player function, will include a 1.3 megapixel camera, Internet capability and gaming functions.
Sony Ericsson's first Walkman branded phone, the W800, will hit stores on Thursday, while the W550 is due in the fourth quarter. Another Walkman phone, the W600, aimed at the North American market, will also reach stores in the fourth quarter.
Motorola has made a strong comeback recently in the high-end segment of the mobile phone market with its RAZR products, and is expected to launch a phone based on Apple Inc.'s (AAPL) wildly popular Ipod music player.
Nokia had to delay the introduction of the N90 by about a month in order to fine-tune some features. It was launched in April and was initially planned to go on sale in June.
Nokia's N-series was welcomed by analysts and investors when it was launched as many see a need for Nokia to upgrade its image in the high end of the market.
Some analysts however are cautious on whether the N-series will accomplish this.
"It's not an iconic design," said Ben Wood, an analyst at research firm Gartner. But Wood said he believes the product will still sell well because it's a Nokia phone.
-By Magnus Hansson, Dow Jones Newswires; +46 8 545 130 91, firstname.lastname@example.org
(END) Dow Jones Newswires"
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