Espoo (Finland) – Nokia announced today its plans to sell mobile phones directly to customers with two new stores due to open this year. The company will open a store in Chicago on June 21, and another in New York later in the year. In addition to selling Nokia phones normally available through carriers, the store will also sell high-end multimedia models like the N93 and N91.
Handset manufacturers have traditionally sold their phones through wireless carriers and one-stop stores like Best Buy, Radio Shack, and CompUSA. Customers who agree to a yearly or multi-year wireless contract often get highly discounted prices and in some cases the phones are even free. But direct retail sales are common in Asia, where customers purchase handsets first and then purchase time cards afterwards.