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Nokia makes surprise profit, Windows Phones release limited

Nokia has reversed this year's catastrophic losses and confirmed that Nokia Windows Phones will hit shops this year in selected countries.

Good news for Nokia: the Finnish phone company has reversed this year's catastrophic losses. Nokia boss Stephen Elop also confirmed that the hotly anticipated Nokia Windows Phone will hit shops this year -- but only in selected countries.

Nokia made a profit on mobile phone sales this quarter. The slim profit of 2 per cent is good news despite an overall £72.5m loss, which is at least an improvement over the eye-watering £400m loss announced earlier this year.

Nokia is still the biggest phone manufacturer in the world, as the worldwide leader in feature phones -- it's sold nearly 90 million basic blowers that aren't smart phones, and hopes to blur the line with new Symbian Belle software on cheaper phones such as the Nokia 700. But half of that phone profit came from a patent-related royalty payment from Apple.

Nokia sells fewer smart phones than Apple, but is getting closer, and will hope to close the gap a lot more when it unveils the first Nokia Windows Phone.

Nokia signed a deal with Microsoft in February, and is expected to unveil its first Windows Phone at Nokia World next week. So far we've seen glimpses of the Nokia 800 or Searay, and the Nokia Sabre -- we'll be at Nokia World, so keep it CNET UK for all the Finnish phone fun we can fling in your face.

"Despite the investment on making Symbian more attractive, the new versions of Symbian Anna and Symbian Belle are not helping Nokia in any way," analyst Francisco Jeronimo told us. "Consumers and mobile operators are looking forward to see the new Windows Phones." The parlous state of Nokia's finances underlines the importance of Windows Phone to the Finnish company.

Is there light at the end of the tunnel for the long-standing phone company, or is Nokia knockin' on heaven's door? Tell us your thoughts in the comments or on our Facebook page -- and don't forget to check out our fascinating journey through the surprisingly long and chequered history of Nokia.