Nokia eases access to Internet services

HELSINKI Sun Dec 21, 2008 5:23pm EST

Nokia's media sharing site Share on Ovi is seen working within Facebook in this computer screenshot taken in Helsinki August 28, 2008. REUTERS/Tarmo Virki

Nokia's media sharing site Share on Ovi is seen working within Facebook in this computer screenshot taken in Helsinki August 28, 2008.

Credit: Reuters/Tarmo Virki

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HELSINKI (Reuters) - Nokia on Sunday removed one of the key obstacles for takeup of its new Internet offering, combining sign-ins for its overall services site Ovi.com and for its media sharing service.

Nokia has bought a dozen companies -- including an $8.1 billion acquisition of mapping company Navteq -- to jump-start its Internet business as growth in the mobile phone market stalls.

The handset maker has gathered access to all of the services to its Ovi.com site, but so far they have all demanded additional usernames and passwords, something analysts see as one of the major obstacles for takeup.

"We are pleased to announce that as part of improving your experience with Share on Ovi, we have merged our sign-in system with Ovi.com," Nokia said in a letter to clients.

"This is a key step in integrating Ovi," Nokia said.

Nokia said earlier this month it aims to make annual revenue of at least 2 billion euros ($2.79 billion) from Internet services in 2011, focusing on navigation, music, games, messaging and media -- but is battling with more established rivals such as Google, Apple and Yahoo.

Nokia has not unveiled user numbers for its Internet services, which created revenue of 115 million euros in July-to-September quarter.

($1=.7164 Euro)

(Reporting by Tarmo Virki, editing by Maureen Bavdek)

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