By now you must have heard that Nokia’s devices and services business has been acquired by Microsoft. Under the deal Microsoft can use the Nokia brand for mobile phones for up to ten years, but it appears that Redmond might not go for that despite having the right to do so. In an “Ask Me Anything” session today, former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, who now heads the mobile business at Microsoft, revealed that the company would come up with a new brand for future handsets.
Earlier this week it was discovered that a Microsoft Mobile division has been formed which basically takes over the incoming handset division of Nokia. Elop clarified that the Microsoft Mobile division is merely a “legal construct” which was cooked up to “facilitate the merger.” Contrary to popular belief future handsets won’t be released under the Microsoft Mobile branding.
Elop adds that while the Nokia brand can be used for a period of time it “will not be used for long going forward for smartphones,” revealing that “work is underway to select the go forward smartphone brand.”
It is unclear right now exactly what brand Microsoft is going to opt for. Some might think that Surface Mobile makes sense, but really its up to the company’s marketing department to create a new brand. With the acquisition of Nokia’s devices and services business Microsoft has formally stepped into the handset market and right now it is its own biggest Windows Phone vendor.