Microsoft buys Nokia's Device/Services division
In what is being heralded as Steve Ballmer's last big move before retirement, Microsoft announced today that it will acquire the hardware and services unit of Nokia, the Finnish phone manufacturer.
Microsoft will pay 3.79 billion euros for the "Devices & Services" business, and 1.65 billion euros for a 10-year license on Nokia's patents. This is roughly $7.17 billion (which will be paid entirely in cash), and is less than the amount Microsoft paid for Skype. This purchase will also net Microsoft approximately 32,000 new employees.
This unit encompasses Nokia's patents, its mapping and other proprietary technologies, and the popular Lumia line of smartphones. In short, this is a pretty huge move for Microsoft who is still trying to find their niche in a changing technological landscape.
It will be interesting to see how this affects the Windows Phone line, but in the mean time, what do you think? Do you think it's a good move? Leave your opinions and comments below.
This move makes sense I think. There had been prior rumors of Microsoft buying a device company, namely BlackBerry or Nokia, and it just makes sense to see them grab Nokia.
I think Microsoft will take a more hands on approach (compared to Google and Motorola) and actively try to optimize the hardware and software relationship.
Nokia is making beautiful hardware, and if this relationship allows Microsoft to give it better software, I am all for it
The real question I have is what happens to the large amount of Asha and similar devices that are selling well overseas. Nokia may be synonymous with Windows Phone 8 here, but its a different story in other economies. Will Microsoft try and cater their OS to the needs of the low end market, or will it move Nokia to stay in the mid-high end market and then allow some other company to sweep up that market share?
I personally see this as something that could hurt the WP platform. Its not that I think Microsoft will hurt the platform but more, who would develop for WP when they are against the people that control the OS? This to me is a rehash of when the Surface launched; all the OEMs took it as an insult that they must compete with MS.....
Unless they open up the OS for fine tuning from HTC or Samsung I just do not see this helping the platform. And this is coming from fan and user of WP.
It's indicative of Microsoft's realization it's ridiculously late to the mobile game, and accordingly, needing to now make significant investment in a market that they cannot ignore.
The integration between the Windows 8 OS, Windows Phone, XBox One, etc, is ultimately going to make the platform compelling... Microsoft just needs to hope they're not too late to the game. Personally, I think the timing is good. Something big is due from Apple, and soon, otherwise Android and Windows Phone are going to see further gains in the mobile market.
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