Today in London, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and Nokia CEO Steven Elop made a massive announcement, Nokia will now use Windows Phone. While Nokia make decent hardware, software – particularly Symbian has really let them (and their users) down.
Recent reports indicated that sales for Windows Phone were less than desirable, which means the partnership will be mutually beneficial. Specific details of the deal between Microsoft and Nokia are still being worked through, there are a few points they are able to confirm.
• Nokia will adopt Windows Phone as its primary smartphone strategy, innovating on top of the platform in areas such as imaging, where Nokia is a market leader.
• Nokia will help drive and define the future of Windows Phone. Nokia will contribute its expertise on hardware design, language support, and help bring Windows Phone to a larger range of price points, market segments and geographies.
• Nokia and Microsoft will closely collaborate on development, joint marketing initiatives and a shared development roadmap to align on the future evolution of mobile products.
• Bing will power Nokia’s search services across Nokia devices and services, giving customers access to Bing’s next generation search capabilities. Microsoft adCenter will provide search advertising services on Nokia’s line of devices and services.
• Nokia Maps will be a core part of Microsoft’s mapping services. For example, Maps would be integrated with Microsoft’s Bing search engine and AdCenter advertising platform to form a unique local search and advertising experience
• Nokia’s extensive operator billing agreements will make it easier for consumers to purchase Nokia Windows Phone services in countries where credit-card use is low.
• Microsoft development tools will be used to create applications to run on Nokia Windows Phones, allowing developers to easily leverage the ecosystem’s global reach.
• Microsoft will continue to invest in the development of Windows Phone and cloud services so customers can do more with their phone, across their work and personal lives.
• Nokia’s content and application store will be integrated with Microsoft Marketplace for a more compelling consumer experience.
The creative marketing teams are working overtime, creating aspirational statements for the 2 companies futures together..
There are other mobile ecosystems. We will disrupt them. There will be challenges. We will overcome them. Success requires speed. We will be swift. Together, we see the opportunity, and we have the will, the resources and the drive to succeed.
This is a massive announcement, a deal that will see WP7 distributed across many, many more hardware devices going head to head with Google’s Android platform.
The future of smart phones just got a whole lot more interesting.
Nokia and Microsoft will webcast a press conference live at 2am PST (9AM AEST). I’m not sure they’ll actually reveal anything that hasn’t already been announced, but still it is a momentous occasion.
The press conference has now concluded, with a Q&A session in which Ballmer revealed the Nokia / Microsoft deal begun back in November 2010. Elop also announced significant restructuring for Nokia, details of which are to be announced in the coming 24 hours.
More information on the announcement at The Official Microsoft Blog