Could 2011 be the year we see Nokia make an Android handset or hop on board the Windows Phone 7 bandwagon?

CEO Stephen Elop set online tongues a-wagging with a passing comment about the manufacturer's plans after disappointing Q4 2010 financial results.

While discussing the financials, Elop said, "In addition to great device experiences we must build, capitalise and/or join a competitive ecosystem.

"The ecosystem approach we select must be comprehensive and cover a wide range of utilities and services that customers expect today and anticipate in the future."

Like Fern Gully, but with phones

When Elop says 'ecosystem', we can safely assume he means 'operating system' or even 'app platform', with Symbian^3 dividing opinion and failing to ignite US success for the Finns.

Nokia is already working with Intel on MeeGo, a brand new OS set to hit the market at some point early this year; but that 'and/or join' phrasing offers a tantalising hint that the company is considering other existing platforms.

This isn't the first time that rumours of Nokia working on an Android handset have surfaced, with Nokia flatly denying any Android involvement back in 2009.

Nokia is staying tight-lipped on the matter today, however, refusing even to comment on the rumours. Read into that what you will.

Via cnet