A few years (or maybe months) back, nobody would have imagined the majority of Nokia devices running any other operating system other than Symbian. Of course, times have since changed and iOS and Android are enjoying plenty of dominance in the market. Faced with dwindling market share, Nokia eventually decided that massive changes were needed and as such, a partnership with Microsoft was formed. The latest announcement details plans for a broad strategic partnership to build a new global mobile ecosystem. Check out a video announcement of this after the jump. In case you’re wondering what all the fuss about, the deal will mean that:
- Nokia will adopt Windows Phone as its main smartphone strategy, so expect Windows Phone 7-powered Nokia devices
- Nokia will help drive the future of Windows Phone, offering its expertise in hardware design, language support and more
- Bing will power Nokia’s search services, which is definitely news that will disappoint Google
- Nokia Maps will become a core part of Microsoft’s mapping services, and Maps will be integrated with Microsoft’s Bing search engine
- Nokia’s content and application store will be integrated with the Microsoft Marketplace
What does this mean for iOS, Android and BlackBerry devices? It will definitely provide a new and serious challenge. Considering that Nokia has been losing market share due to the lack of interest in Symbian and Microsoft has been struggling to challenge iOS and Android in the mobile scene, this does look like it could become a win-win scenario for both parties, as Nokia will benefit from Microsoft’s software expertise while Microsoft will benefit from Nokia’s global reach and market share. It was mentioned that Nokia will continue to service the 200 million Symbian devices around the world, but Symbian will become a franchise business, and Nokia is expected to sell another 150 mobile phones before halting development of it.
This definitely is one of the biggest changes that Nokia has made in years and many folks will think of it as a gamble, since there is a possibility that the phone manufacturer could lose its uniqueness as other manufacturers such as Samsung and HTC already offer Windows Phone 7 devices, but only time will tell if this is the right move or a reckless gamble.