Yesterday’s video clip of the Nokia N9 has prompted plenty of speculation ahead of the MeeGo Conference in San Francisco later this month, especially given rumors earlier in the year that the N9 had, in fact, been axed. Matters have been further confused by the video being featured on a “MeeGo” Facebook fan page, one which Nokia tells us isn’t, in fact, official.
Nokia certainly does appear to have something planned for the very near future; a device was spotted clearing the FCC recently, with a confidentiality block that lifts June 24. That would miss the MeeGo Conference, though LG is expected to bring both a phone and a tablet along to the event instead.
So, will the N9 simply follow on afterwards, or is the video merely an internal promo for a device that’s unlikely to ever see the commercial light of day? Previous leaks had suggested that Nokia had shifted away from the N9′s slide-out QWERTY keyboard – over concerns with structural stability – and to an all-touch design instead. That decision may well be reflected in the Nokia N950, the MeeGo device promised for 2011 with a developer focus and “unique appeal to the style-conscious, connected enthusiast” according to new MeeGo lead Sebastian Nyström.
Nokia wouldn’t say whether the video is legit or otherwise, nor whether we can expect a commercial release of the N9 prototype seen so far in leaked photos. From what we’re hearing elsewhere, however, that’s looking increasingly unlikely: the “Harmattan” project will bring something new, and if Nokia does keep the QWERTY N9 hardware around, it’s more likely to drop into the Windows Phone parts bin than see a MeeGo release.