Microsoft Agrees To Acquire Nokia Devices And Services Unit

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There are only a few things that can get me to stop watching a Comedy Central roast, but the news that Microsoft has purchased Nokia’s Devices and Services unit stopped me in my tracks. In a joint announcement, outgoing Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Nokia CEO Stephen Elop announced the deal as the clock struck 11 pm Eastern.

Building on this successful partnership, we announced some important news today: an agreement for Microsoft to purchase Nokia’s Devices & Services business, to deliver more choices, faster innovation, and even more exciting devices and services to our customers.

With the commitment and resources of Microsoft to take Nokia’s devices and services forward, we can now realize the full potential of the Windows ecosystem, providing the most compelling experiences for people at home, at work and everywhere in between.

The reality is that this deal has been rumored, desired and sat around in the back of our minds ever since Nokia announced it was going “all in” with Microsoft. However, now that it has finally happened…mind blow.

What kind of impact this will have on Window Phone 8 and its market share moving forward remains to be seen, as is the relationship between Nokia and its carrier partners around the world. Regardless, this is very much a “holy shit” kind of move, even if we saw it all saw it coming a year ago. Microsoft is now a phone/tablet maker and they’ve got plenty of cash to pump into pushing their Windows and Windows Phone 8 brand right to the forefront of our minds.

The joint press statements follows below with the official statement from Microsoft available here

The Next Chapter: An open letter from Steve Ballmer and Stephen Elop

Microsoft to acquire Nokia Devices & Services, accelerating the Windows ecosystem

Nokia and Microsoft have always dreamed big – we dreamed of putting a computer on every desk, and a mobile phone in every pocket, and we’ve come a long way toward realizing those dreams.

Today marks a moment of reinvention.

Nokia has an identity spanning 150 years of heritage, innovation, excellence, and change which began and will continue in Finland and around the world. From humble beginnings as a paper mill factory, to manufacturing rubber boots and car tires, and then to mobile phones, reinvention is in Nokia’s blood.

Nokia will now write its next chapter, focused on enabling mobility through its leadership in networking, mapping & location, and advanced technologies.

For Microsoft as well, today is a bold step into the future, a huge leap forward on our journey of creating a family of devices and services that delight people and empower businesses of all sizes.

Our partnership over the past two and a half years, which combined our respective strengths to build a new global mobile ecosystem, has created incredible results: award-winning phones and amazing services that have made Nokia Windows Phones the fastest-growing smartphones in the world.

Building on this successful partnership, we announced some important news today: an agreement for Microsoft to purchase Nokia’s Devices & Services business, to deliver more choices, faster innovation, and even more exciting devices and services to our customers.

Today’s agreement will accelerate the momentum of Nokia’s devices and services, bringing the world’s most innovative smartphones to more people, while continuing to connect the next billion people with Nokia’s mobile phone portfolio.

With the commitment and resources of Microsoft to take Nokia’s devices and services forward, we can now realize the full potential of the Windows ecosystem, providing the most compelling experiences for people at home, at work and everywhere in between.

We will continue to build the mobile phones you’ve come to love, while investing in the future – new phones and services that combine the best of Microsoft and the best of Nokia.

Nokia and Microsoft are committed to the next chapter.

Together, we will redefine the boundaries of mobility.

Steve & Stephen

The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014, subject to approval by Nokia shareholders, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions. Read more here:http://www.microsoft.com/en-us/news/press/2013/Sep13/09-02AnnouncementPR.aspx

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  • BigMixxx

    Man who didn’t see that coming…
    Means no more pressure from other companies to produce windows phones.

    • magmaspawn

      My guess is the deep pockets Microsoft has to throw at marketing, this just solidifies what Nokia was going for.

      Remember when the Nokia 5190/6190/3390 (3390 invincible to all except my wife) was out an every gas station had cases, and chargers for them. Nokia was on point then. Now they just are a Finland based company that lost market share, unable to maintain what was the largest OS in the world (Symbian) and default to this.

      All in all this is a good thing.

  • kalel33

    It was bound to happen sooner or later.

  • Willie D

    I guess in order for Windows Phone to succeed and for Nokia to actually survive, someone had to buy them, and it better Microsoft than any other company.

  • magmaspawn

    The Nokia Guy at my call center said he wished this would happen about a month ago.

  • ceegii63

    this should effectively SHUT UP the “Wish it ran Android” Comments in the interwebs, it wont, but it should

    • Marc OKelly

      I wish windows phone 8 was more like android

    • JBLmobileG1

      Your right…. It won’t…because I wish it ran Android. LOL Too bad Microsoft didn’t have it to where their Nokia phones ran both platforms, then maybe I would give it a chance. Wait. .. What am I saying? It’s still Microsoft so no thanks.

  • UMA_Fan

    A single high end Windows Phone across all major US carriers would make a big difference. Microsoft has the cash to make this happen. Secondly: the number one place Microsoft needs to throw cash is app development. They need to essentially bribe developers to stay competitive. The average consumer isn’t even going to give it a try if a daily app they are now accustomed to won’t be available. App selection is as important to a smartphone platform as a network is to a wireless operator.

    • Adrayven

      They will screw it up like they did Windows 8.. Their track record in business is great, innovation.. not so much.. Only if they get a John Legere or Jobs in as CEO will it likely be a success.

      Balmer chased away all the innovative talent over the past 10 years. It’s all Mr. Roboto over at M$ right now.. They seriously need to do some talent hunting and get a John Ivy like personality or 2. lol

      • BlackJu

        Who’s John Ivy? You mean Jony Ive? They don’t need more designers. They need someone that can bring all the pieces together, an integrator.

  • Ben

    In the beginning there was GoogleRola, and now there is MicroKia. I wonder who’s going to buy BlackBerry or HTC.

    • JBLmobileG1

      How about YahooBerry ?

      • WW

        I don’t think Yahoo is that stupid (maybe for patents & hardware manufacturing infrastructure but the BB OS has nearly no value). RIM might survive as a smartphone maker if they dropped BB OS (I think they’re too emotionally attached to see their only viable path) and built Android phones.

        The BB OS is doomed since the competitors now have secure enterprise e-mail capability.

        • wilde_ride

          I agree, but never underestimate the ability of yahoo to be stupid.

  • JBLmobileG1

    What a bummer. My first phone I believe was a Nokia. They have always been about reliability. I was never fond of them going to a Windows only o/s and now with Microsoft buying them I don’t think I will ever get another Nokia again. While I heard the Windows Mobile platform has come a long way, I am not a huge fan of Microsoft. Personally I believe this deal can help Microsoft to become the mega giant that they once were in the 90′s but I will never look at a Nokia the same way again. The way I look at it is cell phones and tablets will probably replace all computers one day so in order for Microsoft to stay in the game they will need to focus all their resources to these platforms. Sorta like how Sony was more into making TVs back in the days but now I believe they focus more on their Playstation brand. Microsoft has their Xbox line to compete in the gaming Market and now the Nokia brand for the mobile market. I wouldn’t be surprised if one day we see a Nokia tablet running Windows Mobile.

    • TechHog

      There’s never going to be a tablet running Windows Phone lol. Tablets run Windows 8 or Windows RT.

      • JBLmobileG1

        I meant to say Windows 8 Mobile… in any case I said Windows Mobile not Windows Phone. I’d never say never anyways because anything is possible.

        • TechHog

          Windows Mobile no longer exists, and there was never a “Windows 8 Mobile.” There’s Windows 8 (desktops and x86 tablets), Windows RT (ARM tablets), and Windows Phone 8 (smartphones).

  • wilde_ride

    This this is a big deal. Windows Phone is by far the best mobile phone platform. No, I don’t use it, I use Android and iOS. With a dedicated and terrific phone company like Nokia Windows Phone is going to take off. Google better watch out, and Apple better start advancing iOS.

    • vrm

      ?? If you really believed that, what stops you from using windows phone ? unless you are a troll pretending not to be.

      • wilde_ride

        I’ve been posting on this blog for years so cool your jets with the troll talk. I have a brain Android fanboy. That allows me to think critically. Try it sometime.

  • Fig

    I just hope nokia doesn’t go the way of danger/hiptop when microsoft bought them.

  • LanceMiller

    MS will run Nokia value to zero in no time at all. I hope the stock holders are ready for some serious write offs. The predicted Nokia losses & the continued tablet losses will put some serious pressure on MS stock price. If they ever lose a serious amount of their server software business we could see Apple or Google buying them to avoid a courthouse steps auction.

    • BlackJu

      Do you know how insane that sounds? That’s like saying “If google ever loses a serious amount of their advertising business…” The FUD goes on and on and on…

  • Mike

    Lance, M$ already ran Nokia’s value to nothing: that was why Elop was sent there, the proverbial virus/worm to destroy them from within. This is the other shoe: M$ can buy them for pennies (or pesos, yen, etc) on the dollar. As a Linux user and N900 owner, I knew this was coming, of course, but my stomach flopped when I read it. I am truly disgusted.

    • BlackJu

      Actually, if anything, Nokia is well into recovery. Did you and all your friends have Symbian? Yeah, me neither. But if it helps you to think of Microsoft as the corporate devil, go right on. The 90′s are over, let it go.

  • Android_FTW

    I really hate to be negative, but what difference will this make? Windows Phone is going nowhere but to the trash heap of history along with Palm and Blackberry.

    • BlackJu

      People have been saying that for years. And yet it’s still around.

    • WW

      It’s still a tiny % but WP is actually gaining market share. It looks like they’re on their way up but unless they can convince more OEMs to expand their WP lineup, they won’t get much bigger.

      As an old Windows Mobile user, I’m rooting for them to grow but as an Android user, I’m glad to be where I am.

  • BlackJu

    Hopefully, this brings a heavyweight to the table that can end some of these carrier exclusives.

  • vrm

    Agrees ?!

    You make it sound like it was forced upon them and they reluctantly agreed. Facts point otherwise. It was a meticulously planned takeover. They planted Elop, an ardent and acknowledged fan boy who made no attempts to hide his love for m$ while CEO of nokia.

    Nokia’s parts were systematically dismembered as the company was forced to jettison its most prized possessions in its quest to build its own ecosystem. It had failed to rally the market behind symbian but had an array of successful products based on it. At the same time it had all but developed its next generation OS (meego/meltemi) only to release one product based on it which was not even marketed in most of the developed world !

    Elop summarily announces that all of this work has to be jettisoned and nokia become a m$ OEM. This process had begun in the fall of 2010 when Elop was planted at nokia by the BOD of m$ in connivance with wall street mafia.

    Elop’s job since then was to systematically undermine nokia’s value as a company and hand it over to m$ eventually.

    • TechHog

      Are tinfoil hats hot in the summer?

      • Davis

        Anyone that has been following this entire fiasco for the last 5 years would tell you the same thing, just go over to Slashdot or Reddit and read the threads on the topic, everyone agrees that Microsoft manipulated Nokia into this situation from the start. Just you wait, all signs out towards Elop getting singled out as the next CEO for Microsoft from this.

    • BlackJu

      And do you really think this was a bad thing? Especially in the US, a tech and mindshare leader, who was carrying around Symbian/meego? If you can’t compete, the next best option is to make yourself an attractive takeover target.

    • vrm

      Actually, looking at the so called deal, it is a fraction of today’s market cap for Nokia (even before today’s run up) ?! So why are investors so happy ? They are being paid less than the market value for Nokia ( as inflated as that already was).

  • WW

    I think that if they follow the path of RIM and Apple, their already small market share will stagnate if not shrink.

    Consider that BB & Apple both, once dominated the market. Android popped up from zero to now dominate the smartphone market. I believe it’s success is due primarily to the freedom of choice available in the Android world:
    -dozens of OEMs
    -2″+ up to 5″+ screens
    -keyboard or no keyboard: yes
    -under $100 to over $800
    -apps? Play Store, Amazon, devs, lots of other stores/sources).

    This is the same reason Windows dominates (Mac OS is arguably a superior OS to Windows) the PC/laptop market.

    The OS will likely always belong to MS but unless they get other OEMs to expand their WP offerings, they’ll always be a minor mobile OS (even as #3).

  • http://about.me/daylondeon Deacon

    Surface Phone rebranding inbound? lol .. jk

  • mingkee

    Nokia has ended.

  • nerdlust

    Im a note2 user and im really happy with it I did test out an iphone5 and a windows 7 phone both were great. But the windows phone was surprisingly better then I had expected to be. Im assuming that the newer windows phone will be even better.

  • Gsm Helper

    NOKIA will end…
    Stephen Elop will replace Steve Ballmer at MS…
    Windows Phone will be the 2nd OS after Android…

  • JimInChicago

    I can’t believe that T-Mo news has this story but none that I could find about GSM-based Vodafone becoming freed from their partnership in Verizon Wireless.

    Why is this important to T-Mo followers? When the VZW deal goes through, Vodafone will be a prime candidate to buy TMUS. Vodafone will have the cash and they are GSM-based.

    Getting out of the Verizon Wireless partnership allows Vodafone to be in the US on their own terms.

    • princedannyb

      That would be awesome. I would rather that than Dish.

    • vzwsucks

      +1.

      Btw, it’s Vodafone…

      • JimInChicago

        Thanks for the correction!

  • http://dualshockers.com Joel Taveras

    Say hello to “Surface Phone”… a Lumia 1020 with a 1080p screen and 32gb of storage (expandable).

    Make it happen MS.

  • josephsinger

    So, will the new company be Mokia, Microkia or what?

  • Wilma Flintstone

    Glad more companies are starting to use Carl Zeiss lenses in their phones. That was the one main reason I stuck with Nokia after their departure from MeeGo. Now I say, best of luck with Microsoft.

    I have the S4 now and am looking into getting the Xperia Z1. Come on Tmobile US, offer me that beauty

    • thepanttherlady

      I’ll be getting the Z1 although I won’t wait 6 months after release for T-Mobile to get it. LOL