Rumor: Nokia orders its first batch of netbooks


Way back when 2009 was still somewhat fresh, Nokia’s CEO Olli-Pekka Kallasvuo dropped the news that the world’s favorite Finnish handset maker was getting into the laptop biz. With a bit of algebra, logic, and other voodoo, we figured that what he actually meant was netbooks. Some commenters called us crazy, citing a weak economy and low-margins. Turns out, we were right.

Yesterday, Nokia and Intel announced announced a partnership “to create an open standard for a new mobile computing platform built upon Linux-based operating systems.” Today, IntoMobile spotted the following passage from Bloomberg:

Nokia Oyj ordered netbook computers from Quanta Computer Inc. and Compal Electronics Inc., the Commercial Times reported, without saying where it got the information.

The Quanta netbook will use Intel Corp.’s Atom chip and will go on sale in the third quarter at the earliest, the Taipei-based, Chinese-language newspaper said.

Compal will make the so-called smartbook computer for Nokia using Qualcomm (NSDQ: QCOM) Inc.’s Snapdragon chip, the newspaper said.

Nokia is the world’s biggest mobile phone maker. Taiwan- based Quanta and Compal are the world’s two-biggest makers of laptop computers.

So, we’re looking at one Quanta-made netbook and one Compal-made smartbook. What’s the difference between the two “_____book” monikers? Intel prefers the netbook name for Atom-based portables, while Qualcomm prefers the smartbook name for those running Snapdragon. Either way, it looks like we’re one step closer to little tiny Nokia-branded laptops.