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Original poster
Apr 12, 2001
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Nokia has revealed plans to sell its digital health business back to the co-founder of Withings, the French health tracking company Nokia bought in 2016.

Finland-based Nokia originally acquired Withings for $192 million in an effort to re-establish a presence in the consumer electronics market, rebranding Withings' iOS-compatible smart connected home products as well as a range of health and fitness wearables.

withings_nokia.0-e1488196667857-800x402.jpg

However, it looks as if the acquisition simply didn't pay off for the erstwhile mobile phone powerhouse. In 2017, the digital health division earned just $62.4 million in revenue, but the rest of the company posted sales of $27.9 billion. Now Nokia is handing back the business to Withings' co-founder, Éric Carreel. The sale will likely be at a significant loss, although the Nokia press release didn't mention figures:
Nokia announced a review of strategic options for the Digital Health business in February 2018. The planned sale is part of Nokia's honed focus on becoming a business-to-business and licensing company. The transaction is subject to terms agreed in the negotiations and completion of the information consultation with the Works Council of Nokia Technologies (France) SA., with the deal expected to close in late Q2 2018.
The announcement follows recent reports of layoffs from the company, as well as a leaked memo that revealed the digital health division was in a bad way with little prospect of turning things around. Then in October, Nokia announced a $164 million write-down of the division's assets. Google and Samsung were reportedly looking into taking the ailing health business off Nokia's hands, but today's announcement suggests nothing substantial came of the negotiations.

Article Link: Nokia to Sell Digital Health Division Back to Withings Co-Founder
 

Linas7

macrumors newbie
Jun 10, 2009
22
8
Withings products were distinct and I actually liked the style of the watches.
 

honglong1976

macrumors 68000
Jul 12, 2008
1,522
967
UK
That's great news. Back to the Withings brand. How frustrating for those who upgraded their Withings to Nokia branded goods only for them to revert back to Withings again.
 

Deimo

macrumors member
Apr 26, 2005
66
15
Hopefully now they can push ahead with better integration. I purchased the scale because of 3 factors: 1, it was integrated with HealthKit, 2, it had a rechargeable battery and 3, it was the most visually appealing scale to my eyes. It replaced a Fitbit Aria whose lack of HealthKit integration was quite annoying and I haven't really looked back since, it would just be much better if the integration was a little more seamless. Top of the list is how the scale records lean muscle mass, but must use a different name for it in the data as it's not rendered in HealthKit on the iPhone.
 

projectle

macrumors 6502a
Oct 11, 2005
525
57
Hopefully they will return functionality that Nokia elected to remove from firmware (like most recently the removal of Pulse Wave Velocity from their high end Scale making it identical to the much cheaper model), or the blood pressure cuff’s variable second wait feature for people who don’t remember to sit down for 5 minutes beforehand like my wife to ensure an accurate reading, or ...
 

LV426

macrumors 65816
Jan 22, 2013
1,273
1,116
Good. Now make your products so that they don’t require an ‘account’ to function, process highly personal medical information, and send the results in plain text email, like writing your medical history on a postcard.
 

NexusUser

macrumors member
Aug 24, 2016
63
392
I have the Body Cardio scale and Steel HR watch from them and they both work flawlessly. The problem is that Nokia has basically been treading water ever since they bought Withings. I'm extremely worried that they've lost too much ground to Fitbit in the last couple of years and that it may be too late to turn it around.
 

WilliamG

macrumors G3
Mar 29, 2008
9,242
2,755
Seattle
Hopefully they will return functionality that Nokia elected to remove from firmware (like most recently the removal of Pulse Wave Velocity from their high end Scale making it identical to the much cheaper model), or the blood pressure cuff’s variable second wait feature for people who don’t remember to sit down for 5 minutes beforehand like my wife to ensure an accurate reading, or ...

The first issue is nothing to do with Nokia, as I understand it. The email about its removal I received referenced “regulatory approval.”
 

GadgetBen

macrumors 68000
Jul 8, 2015
1,768
3,490
London
Nokia are an absolute joke, we have the body scale and Nokia removed some of the key features of the scale and completely ruined the old Withings app when they took it over.

Nokia have no idea what they should be doing anymore.
 

ghost187

macrumors 6502a
Mar 18, 2010
965
2,042
Nokia has done everything possible to ruin this brand, I hope Withings only paid pennies on the dollar.
 
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Stella

macrumors G3
Apr 21, 2003
8,707
5,882
Canada
Ugh, Nokia totally screwed up :-( Disappointing. On the bright side, they didn't totally trash Whithings - they made good products.
 

g3nw1

macrumors newbie
Aug 15, 2015
24
18
London
After being an original customer since the start. I have completely lost faith in this brand. They sold their souls once and will do it again. Selling users data to the highest bidder. Nokia still has all my years of data! and Withings now expects customers to keep with them. I used to own every product from them. now only have the BP band that I rarely use. I will pass thanks. New customers beware.
 

MacFan23

macrumors 6502
Feb 17, 2010
406
452
After being an original customer since the start. I have completely lost faith in this brand. They sold their souls once and will do it again. Selling users data to the highest bidder. Nokia still has all my years of data! and Withings now expects customers to keep with them. I used to own every product from them. now only have the BP band that I rarely use. I will pass thanks. New customers beware.

Interesting take. Personally I've always been very happy with Withings and was sad when they sold to Nokia, not because of my data but because of the fear that Nokia wouldn't innovate and eventually kill the products. Selling happens if the right offer comes along with every business. If you'd like, you can invoke your new GDPR rights and request that Nokia removes all personal data they hold on you once that goes live.
 
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honglong1976

macrumors 68000
Jul 12, 2008
1,522
967
UK
After being an original customer since the start. I have completely lost faith in this brand. They sold their souls once and will do it again. Selling users data to the highest bidder. Nokia still has all my years of data! and Withings now expects customers to keep with them. I used to own every product from them. now only have the BP band that I rarely use. I will pass thanks. New customers beware.
I had a Withings tracker in 2012. Great app, product. Things have moved on and I don't think they can compete with Apple or Fitbit anymore. Give them a year and they will be another dead company.
 

kaz911

macrumors member
Sep 23, 2014
68
163
Withings and Nokia are equally bad

Health App was bad before Nokia
Health App got worse with Nokia

Support was bad (non-existent) before Nokia
Support was slightly better with Nokia

Withings made good hardware
But terrible software support - like Baby Monitor app that has not been updated since ? 7 years?
Baby/Child Scales - no longer supported in app so does not longer work
After a products is "slightly" mature - software updates stop even for iPhone/Android apps. If it is not in the health app - support dies after 3-12 months and is no longer updated.

So from one hell to another hell and back again.

But they have some unique products that work well if you do not rely on their app's.

With the latest feature removal from the smart scales - I managed to negotiate a voucher for twice what they initially offered. I spent that on the BPM+ when it was on sale so got it for equal to 66% off SRP.

App is still crap - but I hardly use it - data is feed into other systems and I use them from there.
 

Chupa Chupa

macrumors G5
Jul 16, 2002
14,834
7,394
Nokia are an absolute joke, we have the body scale and Nokia removed some of the key features of the scale and completely ruined the old Withings app when they took it over.

Nokia have no idea what they should be doing anymore.

Yes, I'm hoping when it goes back to Withings it will get the whatever approval is needed to re-implement the Pulse Wave feature, not that I really put any weight (no pun) into it, but it is part of the feature set of the scale. I bought the scale for cheap so didn't feel the need to return it when Nokia offered to take it back. And the $30 they offered -- like I would want another overpriced, half-functional Nokia health product. Ha. Ha.
 

Nell

macrumors 6502a
Jun 25, 2012
577
262
London
I have the blood pressure cuff (which I really should use more) and a set of scales (not the pulse wave thingy ones) and have been very happy with both. The scales replaced an old pair of Fitbit ones that were wildly erratic from the start.

The app isn’t great but the hardware is and the data goes into Apple HealthKit so effectively Withings/Nokia is the total opposite of Fitbit. Personally I’d always take great hardware and an average app over a good app but shoddy hardware which is constantly being replaced with newer models without any real improvement to the build quality.
 
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