San Antonio — The Progressive Retailers Organization was at the Westin La Cantera Hill Coun
San Diego — Nokia will sell CDMA handsets to fewer carriers and will focus its CDMA marketing efforts on Verizon Wireless and a Chinese carrier, which uses the related TD-SCDMA standard, TWICE learned.
The strategy, which will open up opportunities for other CDMA handset makers, reflects personnel cuts announced last week at Nokia's San Diego office, where global and North American CDMA product development is centered.
In North America, Verizon is Nokia's largest CDMA handset customer, but Nokia also sells to such smaller carriers as MetroPCS and Leap Wireless. Sprint does not currently sell Nokia handsets.
“There have been a small number of positions affected in this change,” a spokesperson said. “No specifics have been disclosed externally.”
As for its CDMA handset strategy, the spokesperson said “small changes” to Nokia's CDMA business will “strengthen our presence with key operators in China and North America, focusing on high-end CDMA devices.”
Dreieich, Germany — Volkswagen added its name to the expanding list of car makers offering a portable GPS option.
For all vehicle models in all markets including the U.S., Volkswagen is offering a version of the Garmin 7x5 Nuvi series along with a Click & Ride mounting kit that sits on the dashboard rather than on the windshield. The kit is mounted by an installer, but the PND can be inserted and quick-released by the consumer.
Little Rock, Ark. — AT&T reached an agreement to buy many Alltel-branded markets from Verizon Wireless, but Verizon hasn't yet divested itself of all Alltel markets.
Verizon bought Alltel in January, but federal regulators stipulated that in the 105 850MHz markets where Verizon and Alltel competed, Alltel executives must independently run operations under the Alltel brand until Verizon sells off the Altel and Verizon assets there.
Verizon recently agreed to sell network operations in 79 markets, most of them rural Alltel markets, to AT&T, but that leaves about two dozen Alltel markets still up for sale. AT&T expects the transaction to close in Q4.