Microsoft acquires Nokia’s Devices and services business for EUR 5.44 billion licenses Mapping and patents

Holly molly who saw this one coming ? Microsoft has just announced the acquisition of Nokia‘s Devices & Services business alongside licensing it’s mapping an patents portfolio for €5.4Billion in cash today. Many like me have guessed that this may have been the big plan all along since the day Stephen Elop was appointed CEO of the troubled phone maker exactly 3 years ago in one week. After the successful launch of several Nokia Windows Phone devices in the past couple of months and the continued growth of Windows Phone’s market share todays seems to be the right time for Microsoft to start a new chapter by acquiring the best Phone maker in the world and securing the biggest patent portfolio in smart device patents.

Here’s are the principal terms of today’s acquisition deal:

  • Microsoft is spending about EUR 3.79 billion to acquire Nokia’s core cellphone business. Of that EUR 1.65 billion is for Nokia’s devices business
  • Microsoft will pay $2.18 billion to license Nokia’s intellectual property
  • Nokia’s patent portfolio includes some 8,500 design patents ranging from mapping to network/cell technologies with approximately 30,000 utility patents and patent applications, ownership of the Lumia & Asha brands and a ten year license to you the Nokia brand on feature phones. (this means that Microsoft’s Windows Phones will only be branded Lumia and not Nokia..strange I know..)
  • About 32,000 Nokia employees are expected to transfer to Microsoft as part of the deal. Off those 18,300 are “directly involved in manufacturing”
  • 56,000 Nokia employees will remain at the company once the deal has closed
  • Microsoft acquires rights equivalent to ownership for the HERE Mapping apps
  • Nokia will continue to improve these apps for other platforms
  • 4 year- agreement for mapping data and services: Nokia will provide MS with mapping data and services in exchange of annual payments Microsoft will combine Nokia map data with other sources and also make it available to Windows AZURE users with an additional fee.?
  • Microsoft’s gross margin on sales of Nokia’s Windows Phone handsets before the deal: less than $10. Expected to grow to $40 after the deal.
  • Microsoft will build a $250M data center in Finland for consumer purposes (AZURE too?)
  • Finland will become a core base of Microsoft in Europe and also the center of it’s mobile hardware R&D and manufacturing.
  • Stephen Elop will step down and CEO of Nokia and head back to Microsoft as the EVP of Devices a job title that was just recently awarded to Julie Larsson Green which will now basically only handle the upcoming fall hardware launches (XBOX One, Surfaces) and report directly to Elop and Ballmer.
  • Stephen Elop just went from being and external to an internal candidate for the CEO job that Steve Ballmer will leave in the next 12 Months.
  • Nokia’s top designer Marko Ahtisaari will leave the company in November to “pursue entrepreneurial opportunities,”
  • Continue reading Microsoft acquires Nokia’s Devices and services business for EUR 5.44 billion licenses Mapping and patents →

    Nokia definitely in bed with Qualcomm: Stephen Elop to keynote at Qualcomm’s Uplinq conference

    Once fierce enemies, now best buddies. Both companies were throwing patent infringement suits at each other a couple of years ago but all this seems to be history now that Stephen Elop is at the hem of the Finnish mobile giant. Nokia’s CEO will be speaking at Qualcomm’s Uplinq conference in San Diego on June 2 (HTC’s Peter Chou will also have a keynote on the same day). Back in February 2009 Nokia signed a deal to use Qualcomm’s MSM7XXX and MSM8XXX SoC in their US band handsets but nothing really came out of this given the problems the handset maker was facing during this time period (product delays and cancellations, change of CEO and management etc). Ironically both SoC’s are now what the company is going to use for its Windows Phone 7 handsets (Qualcomm is currently the sole supplier of SoC for Windows Phones).

    Continue reading Nokia definitely in bed with Qualcomm: Stephen Elop to keynote at Qualcomm’s Uplinq conference →

    Nokia and Microsoft sign definitive agreement ahead of schedule. First device still expected this year

    Microsoft and Nokia have jointly announced today that they have signed the definitive agreement ahead of schedule and that work is underway to get the first Nokia windows Phone 7 handset out this year followed by volume shipment in 2012. We recently heard that Stephen Elop was already using a WP7 Nokia handset and this has been confirmed today by Nokia Executive Vice President Kai Oistamo who said that Nokia employees are already using prototypes all around the world. To boost the developer ecosystem Microsoft is also announcing that all current published Nokia developers will be offered a free 1 year registration to the Windows Phone developer program for the first year. Additionally it seems like the MS powered Nokia branded Ovi Store will become a hub that leverages the Windows Marketplace infrastructure. Developers will be able to use it to offer Symbian, S40, Windows Phone apps in one place (and I guess that the WP7 apps will also automatically appear in the MS Marketplace).

    Continue reading Nokia and Microsoft sign definitive agreement ahead of schedule. First device still expected this year →

    First Nokia Windows Phone 7 phone already seen in the wild

    According to an eye witness present (Timo Ronkainen) at an ice Hockey match this weekend Nokia’s Stephen Elop didn’t waste no time and is apparently already using one of the company’s early Windows Phone 7 prototypes as his daily driver. As it was reported last week the Finnish company is already hard at work on its upcoming range of Windows Phone powered smartphones that are scheduled to launch at the end of this year if all goes according to plan.

    Continue reading First Nokia Windows Phone 7 phone already seen in the wild →

    More details about the Microsoft Nokia partnership

    Nothing really news breaking here but Mary Joe Foley has uncovered Nokia’s latest 20-F SEC Form which details the Microsoft partnership announced last month ahead of Mobile World Congress. All the information contained in it was basically already known if you watched the full webcast of the February 11th event. But the emphasis here is really put on the fact that, just like any big business partnership, this is going to be a long journey. Nokia may (or may not) start shipping its first Windows Phone 7 handset at the end of the year but the full transition is going to spread out until 2013.

    Stephen Elop made it very clear that 2011 and 2012 are going to be transitional years for the company who has yet to finalized the deal with Microsoft. I personally think that Microsft (and Ballmer) did, in a sense, really overtake Nokia without outright buying it. The Software giant essentially gets most of the Finnish company’s assets like in exchange of practically nothing (besides the $1 billion):

    “Nokia would bring assets such as its brand, hardware, productization, global reach, application store, operator billing support, maps and location­-based assets to the partnership. Microsoft would bring their next generation smartphone platform with Windows Phone, as well as search, broader advertising, ecommerce, gaming and productivity assets such as Bing, AdCenter, Xbox Live and Office.”

    Continue reading More details about the Microsoft Nokia partnership →

    Nokia to give away free Windows Phone 7 devices and an E7 as part of its developer program

    Everything seems to be moving pretty quickly at Nokia since the Microsoft partnership was announced a week ago. The company has apparently just sent an email to all developers who are taking part of the Launchpad program and is promising to offer them a free Nokia E7 handsets and a Nokia Windows Phone 7 devices “once they are available”. Check out the full email after the break:

    Continue reading Nokia to give away free Windows Phone 7 devices and an E7 as part of its developer program →

    First Nokia Windows Phone 7 device coming out this year

    Nokia’s Jo Harlow has just hinted at a possible 2011 release date for the first Nokia Windows Phone 7 handset during Setphen Elop’s MWC event Keynote and that a massive volume of Nokia WP7 handset should be expected in 2012. The company also officially unveiled the prototype renders that we saw just 2 days ago.

    Continue reading First Nokia Windows Phone 7 device coming out this year →

    Former Microsoft Corporate Vice President appointed President of Nokia Inc (US)

    It is really starting to look like Microsoft is taking over Nokia. Following today’s big announcement, the Espoo based company has also appointed Chris Weber, former Corporate Vice President at Microsoft, as the head of Nokia Inc (Nokia US if you prefer). No matter what you think about Steve Ballmer but this whole Nokia thing which started with Stephen Elop moving as CEO of the mobile giant leading to today’s partnership seems like pure genius if it all goes well in the long run. Press release after the break:

    Continue reading Former Microsoft Corporate Vice President appointed President of Nokia Inc (US) →

    First Nokia Windows Phone 7 handset concept revealed

    Well, that didn’t take long…Engadget just got their hands on two renders showinb what loks like the first concept of a Nokia Windows Phone 7handset straight from their sources in Espoo. They look mighty good in my opinion and this also goes to show that both companies have be actively working together to bring handsets to the market as soon as possible. One more shot after the break:

    Continue reading First Nokia Windows Phone 7 handset concept revealed →

    All about the Microsoft and Nokia partnership

    Today is a big day for the mobile industry and will probably remember as the beginning of a new three horses races or the end of an empire (Nokia), depending on the future outcome of Nokia’s partnership with Microsoft. Instead of posting every single piece of news about today’s announcement I will simply direct you to the on-demand webcast of the event. I’m already seeing badly reported news popping up on some news sites so please check out the whole event to get all the relevant info. The important things that I want to highlight are the info that I posted on Twitter earlier during the meeting:

    1) According to the NY Times, Nokia’s CEO had talks with Google and Microsoft which then led to a short bidding war to secure the deal (hundreds of millions of dollars) Google is obviously the loser today and now we kind of to why Vic Guntodra was so happy about it.

    Continue reading All about the Microsoft and Nokia partnership →

    Stephen Elop answers Google’s Vic Gundotra

    Nokia’s CEO Stephen Elop responded to Google’s Vic Gundotra’s Turkey quote earlier today on Twitter with a reference to the Wright Brothers:

    Or this: Two bicycle makers, from Dayton Ohio, one day decided to fly.

    I guess that Steve and Stephen / Nokia and Microsoft are now brothers in arms…Let the mobile war begin… Click on the related posts below or follow us on Twitter for more Nokia Microsoft coverage.

    Nokia and Microsoft Partnership announced!

    Looks like it’s a done deal. Nokia and Microsoft have just announced their strategic partnership with Windows Phone 7 becoming Nokia’s principal smartphone strategy. But it get’s even better; Nokia’s Ovi maps will be at the core of Microsoft Bing Maps! We are finally going to have great mapping content outside of the United States! This is a huge deal folks really huge deal.

    Nokia and Microsoft Announce Plans for a Broad Strategic Partnership to Build a New Global Mobile Ecosystem

    Companies plan to combine assets and develop innovative mobile products on an unprecedented scale.

    LONDON – Feb. 11, 2011 – Nokia and Microsoft today announced plans to form a broad strategic partnership that would use their complementary strengths and expertise to create a new global mobile ecosystem.

    Nokia and Microsoft intend to jointly create market-leading mobile products and services designed to offer consumers, operators and developers unrivalled choice and opportunity. As each company would focus on its core competencies, the partnership would create the opportunity for rapid time to market execution. Additionally, Nokia and Microsoft plan to work together to integrate key assets and create completely new service offerings, while extending established products and services to new markets.

    Under the proposed partnership:

    • Nokia would adopt Windows Phone as its principal smartphone strategy, innovating on top of the platform in areas such as imaging, where Nokia is a market leader.

    • Nokia would help drive the future of Windows Phone. Nokia would 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 would closely collaborate on joint marketing initiatives and a shared development roadmap to align on the future evolution of mobile products.

    • Bing would power Nokia’s search services across Nokia devices and services, giving customers access to Bing’s next generation search capabilities. Microsoft adCenter would provide search advertising services on Nokia’s line of devices and services.

    • Nokia Maps would 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 would make it easier for consumers to purchase Nokia Windows Phone services in countries where credit-card use is low.

    • Microsoft development tools would be used to create applications to run on Nokia Windows Phones, allowing developers to easily leverage the ecosystem’s global reach.

    • Nokia’s content and application store would be integrated with Microsoft Marketplace for a more compelling consumer experience.

    “Today, developers, operators and consumers want compelling mobile products, which include not only the device, but the software, services, applications and customer support that make a great experience,” Stephen Elop, Nokia President and CEO, said at a joint news conference in London. “Nokia and Microsoft will combine our strengths to deliver an ecosystem with unrivalled global reach and scale. It’s now a three-horse race.”

    “I am excited about this partnership with Nokia,” said Steven A. Ballmer, Microsoft CEO. “Ecosystems thrive when fueled by speed, innovation and scale.The partnership announced today provides incredible scale, vast expertise in hardware and software innovation and a proven ability to execute.”

    Continue reading Nokia and Microsoft Partnership announced! →

    More Nokia Windows Phone 7 rumors

    We are apparently on the verge of one of the most important announcement of the year according to Businessweek who’s the last to come through on the story quoting sources close to the matter. According to them, Stephen Elop was in talks with Google and Microsoft but finally decided to go for Windows Phone 7 (surprised?) and announce the move on Friday in London. Yesterday’s Google VP’s tweet sort of confirms this version so all we can do right now is wait to find out if this turns out to be true.

    It will be interesting to see if Microsoft deals with Nokia in the same way they deal with other WP7 OEMs especially when it comes to OS customization and hardware chassis specs given that Nokia has historicallly always used relatively mid-range (and un-common) hardware configurations specifically tailored for their software. Will Nokia start using Qualcomm’s Snapdragon SoC’s like every other manufacturer?

    Continue reading More Nokia Windows Phone 7 rumors →

    Google’s Vic Gundotra’s latest Tweet hints at Windows Phone 7 Nokia phone

    Things are apparently starting to accelerate quite a bit this week in regards to Nokia’s upcoming major announcement on Friday. As a follow up to last nights internal Nokia memo from CEO Stephen Elop, Google’s Vic Gundotra just tweeted that “Two turkeys do not make an Eagle” a reference to a Nokia quote from 2005 in relation to Siemens and BenQ’s merger. I guess that this definitely rules out the possibility that Nokia was going to adopts Android as one of the software platforms and now leaves Windows Phone 7 as the only solution (that’s IF Nokia is indeed going to ditch Symbian…). The tweet has since be deleted by Vic. Exciting times ahead…

    Continue reading Google’s Vic Gundotra’s latest Tweet hints at Windows Phone 7 Nokia phone →

    Nokia’s burning internal memo: Here comes the Nokia Windows phone 7 handset?

    Recently appointed Nokia CEO and former Microsoft President of Business division, Stephen Elop, has “apparently” just fired an internal memo to the troops that sounds like there’s a really big shake up coming to the finish company in the coming days. We have all already heard about the Nokia Windows Phone 7 rumors and this is the first thought that came to my mind when I learned that Elop was appointed CEO of the mobile giant a couple of months ago. After reading this honest piece it’s fairly clear to see that Nokia is on the verge of mutation and that adopting an outside OS is no longer impossible.

    He clearly mentions Apple and Google as direct competitors but never mention Microsoft at all:

    “…there is intense heat coming from our competitors, more rapidly than we ever expected. Apple disrupted the market by redefining the smartphone and attracting developers to a closed, but very powerful ecosystem.” “They changed the game, and today, Apple owns the high-end range.” “Google has become a gravitational force, drawing much of the industry’s innovation to its core.”

    He also makes it clear that even though Meego is part of the company’s future, the platform is still far from ready and that ast its current pace only one Meego handset may see the light this year:

    “We have some brilliant sources of innovation inside Nokia, but we are not bringing it to market fast enough. We thought MeeGo would be a platform for winning high-end smartphones. However, at this rate, by the end of 2011, we might have only one MeeGo product in the market.”

    Symbian is also mentioned as being too old for the current mobile market:

    “…Symbian is proving to be an increasingly difficult environment in which to develop to meet the continuously expanding consumer requirements…”

    Looks like Friday’s going to be interesting if this turns out to be true… Check out the full memo after the break UPDATE: To be perfectly clear this memo has yet to be confirmed as real so grab so salt:

    Continue reading Nokia’s burning internal memo: Here comes the Nokia Windows phone 7 handset? →

    Microsoft’s President of Business Division becomes Nokia’s CEO

    This frankly came out of nowhere and will surely make a lot of buzz for a while. You may have been aware that Nokia was searching for a new CEO lately but who would have thought that Microsoft’s President of Business Division (Office, Dynamics, Outlook etc…), Stephen Elop, will be the guy? One has to wonder if this is some kind of Microsoft super tactical plan to later take over the Finnish mobile giant… Anyway here’s the full Press Release followed by Steve Ballmer’s email on the subject:
    Continue reading Microsoft’s President of Business Division becomes Nokia’s CEO →