Did Nokia Turn a Corner With These Results?

Nokia’s (NYSE:NOK) doomsayers may have to pull back their criticisms, at least for now; in the fourth quarter the Finnish cellphone manufacturer produced results that gave some hope for the company’s future profitability.

For the three-month period, Nokia generated a profit of 202 million euros ($269 million), a huge increase over the 1-billion-euro loss the company reported in the fourth quarter of 2011. But while profit rose, revenue dropped to 8 billion euros ($10.66 billion) from 10 billion in the year-ago quarter. Operating profit for the full year decreased to a 2.3 billion euro loss from a 1.1 billion euro loss in 2011.

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Sales for the full year were even less encouraging. The company’s sales figures dropped 22 percent to 30.2 billion euros ($40.24 billion) from 38.7 billion euros last year, confirming that competition from Apple’s (NASDAQ:AAPL) iPhone and Google’s (NASDAQ:GOOG) Android devices remained tough. In particular, Nokia’s Devices & Services operation struggled. The unit reported that fourth-quarter revenue fell to 3.9 billion euros from 6 billion, with sales down 34 percent for the full year. Its Lumia smartphones, powered by Microsoft’s (NASDAQ:MSFT) Windows Phone 8, did well, selling 4.4 million units worldwide, but the company’s Smart Devices division sold only 6.6 million units, a 77 percent decline over last year…