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Nokia CEO Stephen Elop.  (Source: WPCentral.com)

Newly appointed President of Nokia Inc. (US), Chris Weber.
Microsoft to pay out billions in blockbuster deal with Nokia

While the blockbuster deal that's amped to put Windows Phone 7 on all Nokia smartphones --essentially phasing out Symbian and making WP7 the world's second-most popular mobile OS in its place -- is supposed to benefit both parties involved, it has thus far been met with mixed reaction. 

The day the deal was announced Nokia's shares dropped 14 percent, and a number of employees -- many on the beleaguered Symbian side -- used the company's flextime program to go home early.

Then, at the Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona over the past weekend, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop was forced to go on the defensive, Business Insider reports, after an audience member asked if he was a Trojan horse. 

"The obvious answer is no," Elop replied. "We made sure that the entire management team was involved in the process, and of course the board of directors of Nokia are the only ones that can make this significant of a decision about Nokia. They made that final decision on Thursday night."

The question was an obvious reference to Elop's past at Microsoft, where he was an executive for two years before taking the top spot at Nokia. To some, it may seem a little strange that Nokia would make such a partnership with Microsoft, particularly after its 10-year investment into Symbian. 

Elop also had to defend his shares of Microsoft stock, which Business Insider reports to be approximately 130,000 shares worth nearly $3.18 million.

Conspiracy theorists received additional ammunition Friday, when Nokia announced Chris Weber as its new president of Nokia Inc. (US) and head of the North American market after current president, Mark Louison, "decided to leave Nokia and pursue new career opportunities." Weber spent 16 years at Microsoft, where he held executive positions as high as corporate vice president.

While solid details of the agreement between the two companies have not been released, news surfaced over the weekend that sheds light on just how big the deal is. According to Computer Worldwhile showing a slide that portrayed Microsoft's investments flowing in Nokia's direction, Elop said, "the value transferred to Nokia is measured in Bs not Ms." Meaning, Microsoft pay-out to Nokia in the deal would be in the billions, not millions, of dollars. No additional details were given, like over how many years the investments would take place.

We also learned that Google was actively pursuing Nokia in what could have been a similar deal, but Microsoft won out, according to Elop. "If you combine the current market share of Android with the market share that Nokia could deliver to Android over the next couple of years, it’s a very large number. One could believe the mobile industry thereafter would be some form of duopoly," Elop said. The decision to go with Microsoft over Google was made to change the dynamic and make it "a three-horse race," as Elop said. Presumably, the multi-billion-dollar investment doesn't hurt, either.

As for availability, a top executive told Computer World that the first WP7-powered Nokia's will be available this year.



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RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By Mitch101 on 2/14/2011 9:44:14 AM , Rating: 2
Posting a lot to myself because I had to deal with my wife iPod/iTunes

Over the past week my wife's iPod died where the buttons wouldn't work and she purchased a refurbished one from the Apple store. We couldn't give up the few devices we have that the iPod plug into and she likes the device. I had to re sync her device and she wanted to add new music too it since it had been a long time.

The iPod itself is a very nice device like I said but the iTunes software is a total piece of SHYT compared to Zune. Yes I said Zune. WTF is with saving songs to a playlist? Why cant I right click and just send to the device? iTunes is F-ing horrible software.

On a Zune you name your devices like Mikes and Lisas. You can right click on any media and send to Mikes and this album send to Lisa. When the devices are powered on they transfer via Wifi or by plugging it in via USB. How in the world can anyone mock the Zune when the software is worlds better than what Apple threw up. I was blown away by how lousy the iTunes software was compared to Zune marketplace.

It occurred to me again the reason they mock the Zune is simply because they never used it and that why they dont know how bad iTunes overcomplicated what could be much simpler.


RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By Tony Swash on 2/14/2011 2:17:03 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
Over the past week my wife's iPod died where the buttons wouldn't work and she purchased a refurbished one from the Apple store. We couldn't give up the few devices we have that the iPod plug into and she likes the device. I had to re sync her device and she wanted to add new music too it since it had been a long time.

The iPod itself is a very nice device like I said but the iTunes software is a total piece of SHYT compared to Zune. Yes I said Zune. WTF is with saving songs to a playlist? Why cant I right click and just send to the device? iTunes is F-ing horrible software.

On a Zune you name your devices like Mikes and Lisas. You can right click on any media and send to Mikes and this album send to Lisa. When the devices are powered on they transfer via Wifi or by plugging it in via USB. How in the world can anyone mock the Zune when the software is worlds better than what Apple threw up. I was blown away by how lousy the iTunes software was compared to Zune marketplace.

It occurred to me again the reason they mock the Zune is simply because they never used it and that why they dont know how bad iTunes overcomplicated what could be much simpler.


I was trying to think of what your comment reminded me of and then it struck me. You sound just a like a Mac user from the 1990s dark ages, back when Windows ruled and what Microsoft did actually mattered. Right down to the fact that your wife went with an iPod because it was "compatible".

The custom Apple 30 pin connector (and the strict control over the number of SKUs) is one of smartest moves Apple ever made. Right now one of the key advantages that iPhone has over Android (and there are others) is that so many third party accessories are iPod/iPhone/iPad compatible, the size of the iDevice add on ecosystem is vast compared to any of the competition. Consumers notice such things.


RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By NellyFromMA on 2/14/2011 2:55:33 PM , Rating: 2
I couldnt possibly agree less with this. I cringe at the thought of needing ANOTHER propietary cable that does NOTHING other than over charge me for something I've been doing forever. Only the most dedicated mac users can appreciate the 'feature' of this proprietary connector. Mini USB FTW, as long as the phone manufacturer doesn't put it in an awkward place.


RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By Mitch101 on 2/14/2011 3:01:43 PM , Rating: 2
I agree my car uses Usb or Blue tooth to stream its music library through my stereo and the list of supported players is pretty much anything with a USB port down to USB thumb drives.

This proprietary connection is nothing more than when IBM tried to force Microchannel as a standard that you would have to go through them to license.


RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By Tony Swash on 2/14/2011 5:35:19 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
I couldnt possibly agree less with this. I cringe at the thought of needing ANOTHER propietary cable that does NOTHING other than over charge me for something I've been doing forever. Only the most dedicated mac users can appreciate the 'feature' of this proprietary connector. Mini USB FTW, as long as the phone manufacturer doesn't put it in an awkward place.


I think your are missing my point.

I wasn't arguing whether the bespoke 30 pin Apple connector for iDevices was a good or bad thing, either technically or from the point of view of the convenience of the end user. I am expressing no view of that.

I am saying that using a bespoke connector makes enormous business sense for Apple. If the i-Devices used, lets say, a standard USB connector then all the vast number of accessories for the i-Devices would also be available for Android, Rim or (if anyone can find one) a WP7 phone. Instead as it stands now if you start collecting such accessories soon you will find switching to another device brand very difficult.

This is exactly the position that many DSLR camera owners find themselves in. They are often locked into a camera brand by their expensive lens collection. I committed to a Nikon DSLR early on and soon had quite a collecting of lenses, the cost of these lenses together is now actually more than the camera. I now buy camera's that are compatible with my lens collection.

It's pretty clear that that is what Apple has done with the 30 pin connector. I would do it to if I were them.


RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By davmat787 on 2/15/2011 1:38:33 PM , Rating: 2
Proprietary interfaces cuts both ways however. Yes, it will mentally "lock" someone in to Apple, but conversely it can lock a potential customer out as well. Their collection of standard cables will not work for their shiny new iThingy, so have to buy a $30 dollar cable that does the exact same thing as their $2 standard USB cable. This does not build goodwill either.

Proprietary cuts both ways by its very nature. I would guess if you look back on computer technology as a whole, proprietary interfaces can be more detrimental to a company than going with the standards.

If you ever worked on a Packard Bell PC, I think you know what I mean.


RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By nikon133 on 2/14/2011 3:26:47 PM , Rating: 2
3rd party accessories are available because there are so many iPhones out there, and they share only 2 different shapes nowadays - 3G/3Gs and 4 shape. Number of accessories (like Logitech speakers I have) are shipped with couple of replaceable plastic holders that will hold iPhone and couple of iPods.

It is nothing to do with connector - you would have as many accessories if iPhones and iPods ended up with, say, micro USB connector instead of proprietary one.

Android, on the other side, has too many different shapes with different positions of connector that it is impossible to make universal accessory for all, or at least majority of Android phones.

Back to the original poster - I agree with him, iTunes is horrible piece of software, at least from my perspective as Windows user. That is one of my major caveats with 3Gs I am currently using and might be deciding factor in my choice of next smartphone, whenever I decide to replace my 3Gs.

Which is sad because I'm quite happy with 3Gs.


RE: Symbian wasnt cutting it.
By Tony Swash on 2/14/2011 7:06:52 PM , Rating: 2
quote:
It is nothing to do with connector - you would have as many accessories if iPhones and iPods ended up with, say, micro USB connector instead of proprietary one.


Again I think my point is being misunderstood. I am not arguing that using a bespoke 30 pin connector increases the number of accessories for i-devices compared to say a mini-USB port.

I am arguing that if i-devices used a mini-USB port then accessories could be built that were compatible with both Apple and to other non-Apple devices. And that would make switching to other devices a bit easier.

As it stands as consumers accumulate 30 pin accessories so a switch to another non-Apple device becomes harder to contemplate as it would involved ditching those devices.


"And boy have we patented it!" -- Steve Jobs, Macworld 2007














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