Nokia and Yahoo! team up on maps, email

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The Independent Tech

Nokia will supply maps and navigation services to Yahoo! and the Web company will provide email and chat to the world's top mobile phone maker under a partnership announced on Monday.

Yahoo! chief executive Carol Bartz and Nokia CEO Oli-Pekka Kallasvuo said the co-branded services would be available starting from the second half of 2010 and globally in 2011.

As part of the "strategic alliance," terms of which were not disclosed, Nokia will be the exclusive global provider of Yahoo!'s map and navigation services, while its "Ovi Maps" will be integrated across Yahoo! properties.

"We're definitely behind on maps," Bartz said at a launch event here with Kallasvuo. "We just didn't put the engineering power on it that we should have three years ago.

"We believe Nokia's strength and continued investment in maps and navigation will greatly enhance our existing products, enabling us to focus on areas that are core to our business," she added.

Bartz said "location has just become such a big part of everything" and Yahoo! is pleased to have a partner ready to "substantially invest in that area."

"Location is a new dimension of the Internet," added Kallasvuo.

The agreement calls for Yahoo! to be the global provider of Nokia's "Ovi Mail" and "Ovi Chat" services.

"Yahoo!'s online expertise will bring exciting mail and messaging enhancements to millions of Ovi Mail customers across almost every country around the world," Kallasvuo said.

Finland's Nokia is the world's leading mobile phone manufacturer, turning out some 400 million devices a year, while Yahoo! websites welcome more than 600 million users a month.