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Microsoft bought Nokia mobile division

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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 08:09    Post subject: Microsoft bought Nokia mobile division   Reply with quote   

So it finally happened.

http://www.engadget.com/2013/09/02/microsoft-will-acquire-nokias-devic es-and-services-business/

Now elop can return to microsoft to take ballmers place as CEO.
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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 08:45    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Microsoft is acquiring Nokia's Smart Devices and Mobile Phones business units, see press release:
    Microsoft to acquire Nokia's Devices & Services business, license Nokia's patents and mapping services
    REDMOND, Washington and ESPOO, Finland - Microsoft Corporation and Nokia Corporation today announced that the Boards of Directors for both companies have decided to enter into a transaction whereby Microsoft will purchase substantially all of Nokia's Devices & Services business, license Nokia's patents, and license and use Nokia's mapping services.

    Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will pay EUR 3.79 billion to purchase substantially all of Nokia's Devices & Services business, and EUR 1.65 billion to license Nokia's patents, for a total transaction price of EUR 5.44 billion in cash. Microsoft will draw upon its overseas cash resources to fund the transaction. The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014, subject to approval by Nokia's shareholders, regulatory approvals and other closing conditions.

    Building on the partnership with Nokia announced in February 2011 and the increasing success of Nokia's Lumia smartphones, Microsoft aims to accelerate the growth of its share and profit in mobile devices through faster innovation, increased synergies, and unified branding and marketing. For Nokia, this transaction is expected to be significantly accretive to earnings, strengthen its financial position, and provide a solid basis for future investment in its continuing businesses.

    "It's a bold step into the future - a win-win for employees, shareholders and consumers of both companies. Bringing these great teams together will accelerate Microsoft's share and profits in phones, and strengthen the overall opportunities for both Microsoft and our partners across our entire family of devices and services," said Steve Ballmer, Microsoft chief executive officer. "In addition to their innovation and strength in phones at all price points, Nokia brings proven capability and talent in critical areas such as hardware design and engineering, supply chain and manufacturing management, and hardware sales, marketing and distribution."

    "We are excited and honored to be bringing Nokia's incredible people, technologies and assets into our Microsoft family. Given our long partnership with Nokia and the many key Nokia leaders that are joining Microsoft, we anticipate a smooth transition and great execution," Ballmer said. "With ongoing share growth and the synergies across marketing, branding and advertising, we expect this acquisition to be accretive to our adjusted earnings per share starting in FY15, and we see significant long-term revenue and profit opportunities for our shareholders."

    "For Nokia, this is an important moment of reinvention and from a position of financial strength, we can build our next chapter," said Risto Siilasmaa, Chairman of the Nokia Board of Directors and, following today's announcement, Nokia Interim CEO. "After a thorough assessment of how to maximize shareholder value, including consideration of a variety of alternatives, we believe this transaction is the best path forward for Nokia and its shareholders. Additionally, the deal offers future opportunities for many Nokia employees as part of a company with the strategy, financial resources and determination to succeed in the mobile space."

    "Building on our successful partnership, we can now bring together the best of Microsoft's software engineering with the best of Nokia's product engineering, award-winning design, and global sales, marketing and manufacturing," said Stephen Elop, who following today's announcement is stepping aside as Nokia President and CEO to become Nokia Executive Vice President of Devices & Services. "With this combination of talented people, we have the opportunity to accelerate the current momentum and cutting-edge innovation of both our smart devices and mobile phone products."

    Nokia has outlined its expected focus upon the closing of the transaction in a separate press release published today.

    TERMS OF THE AGREEMENT
    Under the terms of the agreement, Microsoft will acquire substantially all of Nokia's Devices and Services business, including the Mobile Phones and Smart Devices business units as well as an industry-leading design team, operations including all Nokia Devices & Services-related production facilities, Devices & Services-related sales and marketing activities, and related support functions. At closing, approximately 32,000 people are expected to transfer to Microsoft, including 4,700 people in Finland and 18,300 employees directly involved in manufacturing, assembly and packaging of products worldwide. The operations that are planned to be transferred to Microsoft generated an estimated EUR 14.9 billion, or almost 50 percent of Nokia's net sales for the full year 2012.

    Microsoft is acquiring Nokia's Smart Devices business unit, including the Lumia brand and products. Lumia handsets have won numerous awards and have grown in sales in each of the last three quarters, with sales reaching 7.4 million units in the second quarter of 2013.

    As part of the transaction, Nokia is assigning to Microsoft its long-term patent licensing agreement with Qualcomm, as well as other licensing agreements.

    Microsoft is also acquiring Nokia's Mobile Phones business unit, which serves hundreds of millions of customers worldwide, and had sales of 53.7 million units in the second quarter of 2013. Microsoft will acquire the Asha brand and will license the Nokia brand for use with current Nokia mobile phone products. Nokia will continue to own and manage the Nokia brand. This element provides Microsoft with the opportunity to extend its service offerings to a far wider group around the world while allowing Nokia's mobile phones to serve as an on-ramp to Windows Phone.

    Nokia will retain its patent portfolio and will grant Microsoft a 10-year non-exclusive license to its patents at the time of the closing. Microsoft will grant Nokia reciprocal rights to use Microsoft patents in its HERE services. In addition, Nokia will grant Microsoft an option to extend this mutual patent agreement in perpetuity.

    In addition, Microsoft will become a strategic licensee of the HERE platform, and will separately pay Nokia for a four-year license.

    Microsoft will also immediately make available to Nokia EUR 1.5 billion of financing in the form of three EUR 500 million tranches of convertible notes that Microsoft would fund from overseas resources. If Nokia decides to draw down on this financing option, Nokia would pay back these notes to Microsoft from the proceeds of the deal upon closing. The financing is not conditional on the transaction closing.

    Microsoft also announced that it has selected Finland as the home for a new data center that will serve Microsoft consumers in Europe. The company said it would invest more than a quarter-billion dollars in capital and operation of the new data center over the next few years, with the potential for further expansion over time.

    NOKIA LEADERSHIP CHANGES
    Nokia expects that Stephen Elop, Jo Harlow, Juha Putkiranta, Timo Toikkanen, and Chris Weber would transfer to Microsoft at the anticipated closing of the transaction. Nokia has outlined these changes in more detail in a separate release issued today.

    EXTRAORDINARY SHAREHOLDERS MEETING
    Nokia plans to hold an Extraordinary General Meeting on November 19, 2013. The notice of the meeting and more information on the transaction and its background are planned to be published later this month.

    PRESS CONFERENCE
    Nokia will host a press conference today, Tuesday, Sept. 3, at 11 a.m. EEST in Dipoli, Espoo (Otakaari 24). Registration will start at 10 a.m., and the doors will open at 10.40 a.m. Due to space constraints, only media who show valid press credentials at the registration will be admitted. Media are encouraged to watch a live webcast of the press conference via: http://press.nokia.com/

    INVESTOR CALLS
    Microsoft will hold a conference call for investors, financial analysts and news media Tuesday, Sept. 3, at 3:45 p.m. EEST/8:45 a.m. EDT. Interested parties should call toll-free at (888) 459-9165, or for international calls dial +1-773-799-3324. You may also access the call online at http://www.microsoft.com/investor.

    Nokia executives will hold an investor call at 3 p.m. EEST today, Tuesday, Sept. 3. A webcast of the conference call will be available at http://investors.nokia.com. Media representatives can view the webcast or listen in at +1 706 634 5012, conference ID 45390451.
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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 09:15    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Here follows Nokia's press release:
    Nokia to sell Devices & Services business to Microsoft in EUR 5.44 billion all-cash transaction

    • Transaction expected to be significantly accretive to Nokia earnings.
    • Nokia continues to develop, and sees significant value in, advanced technologies, its patent portfolio and Nokia brand.
    • Nokia focusing on NSN, HERE and Advanced Technologies post-transaction. Each business a leading player in its respective segment.
    • Nokia outlines changes to leadership and Board of Directors.

    ESPOO, Finland - Nokia Corporation today announced that it has signed an agreement to enter into a transaction whereby Nokia will sell substantially all of its Devices & Services business and licence its patents to Microsoft for EUR 5.44 billion in cash, payable at closing. Nokia expects to book a gain on sale of approximately EUR 3.2 billion, and expects the transaction to be significantly accretive to earnings.

    The transaction is expected to close in the first quarter of 2014, subject to approval by Nokia shareholders, regulatory approvals and other customary closing conditions.

    Following the transaction, Nokia plans to focus on its three established businesses, each of which is a leader in enabling mobility in its respective market segment: NSN, a leader in network infrastructure and services; HERE, a leader in mapping and location services; and Advanced Technologies, a leader in technology development and licensing. At closing, this transaction is expected to strengthen Nokia's financial position and provide a solid basis for future investment in these three businesses.

    "After a thorough assessment of how to maximize shareholder value, including consideration of a variety of alternatives, we believe this transaction is the best path forward for Nokia and its shareholders," said Risto Siilasmaa, Chairman of the Nokia Board of Directors and, following today's announcement, also Nokia interim CEO.

    Deal Terms
    Subject to the closing of the transaction, Microsoft will acquire substantially all of Nokia's Devices & Services business, including the Mobile Phones and Smart Devices business units as well as an industry-leading design team, operations including all Nokia Devices & Services production facilities, Devices & Services-related sales and marketing activities, and related support functions. At closing, approximately 32,000 people are expected to transfer to Microsoft, including approximately 4,700 people in Finland. Nokia's CTO (Chief Technology Office) organization and patent portfolio will remain within the Nokia Group. The operations that are planned to be transferred to Microsoft generated an estimated EUR 14.9 billion, or almost 50%, of Nokia's net sales for the full year 2012.

    As part of the transaction, Nokia will grant Microsoft a 10 year non-exclusive license to its patents as of the time of the closing, and Microsoft will grant Nokia reciprocal rights related to HERE services. In addition, Nokia will grant Microsoft an option to extend this mutual patent agreement to perpetuity. Of the total purchase price of EUR 5.44 billion, EUR 3.79 billion relates to the purchase of substantially all of the Devices & Services business, and EUR 1.65 billion relates to the mutual patent agreement and future option.

    Additionally, Microsoft will become a strategic licensee of the HERE platform, and will separately pay Nokia for a four year license. This revenue stream is expected to substantially replace the revenue stream HERE is currently receiving from Nokia's Devices & Services business internally. If the transaction closes Microsoft is expected to become one of the top three customers of HERE.

    Microsoft has agreed to make immediately available to Nokia EUR 1.5 billion of financing in the form of three EUR 500 million tranches of convertible bonds to be issued by Nokia maturing in 5, 6 and 7 years respectively. It is at Nokia's discretion if it chooses to draw down all or some of these tranches. The financing is not conditional on the transaction closing. If the transaction closes, any outstanding bonds will be redeemed and netted against the deal proceeds by the amount of principal and accrued interest.

    The following are the key terms of the three tranches of bonds Nokia may choose to issue:

    • The first tranche matures in 5 years and has a 1.125% per annum coupon payable semi-annually with an initial conversion price of EUR 3.9338.
    • The second tranche matures in 6 years and has a 2.5% per annum coupon payable semi-annually with an initial conversion price of EUR 4.0851.
    • The third tranche matures in 7 years and has a 3.625% per annum coupon payable semi-annually with an initial conversion price of EUR 4.2364.

    The Board of Directors of Nokia will separately assess whether to draw down some or all of this financing. If Nokia would decide to utilize this financing option, the earliest that Microsoft could convert any of these bonds to shares is two years from draw down.

    Microsoft has agreed to a 10 year license arrangement with Nokia to use the Nokia brand on current Mobile Phones products. Nokia will continue to own and maintain the Nokia brand. Under the terms of the transaction, Microsoft has agreed to a 10 year license arrangement with Nokia to use the Nokia brand on current and subsequently developed products based on the Series 30 and Series 40 operating systems. Upon the closing of the transaction, Nokia would be restricted from licensing the Nokia brand for use in connection with mobile device sales for 30 months and from using the Nokia brand on Nokia's own mobile devices until December 31, 2015.

    The transaction is subject to potential purchase price adjustments, protecting both Nokia and Microsoft, and a USD 750 million termination fee payable by Microsoft to Nokia in the event that the transaction fails to receive necessary regulatory clearances.

    Building Nokia's next chapter
    Following the transaction, Nokia plans to focus on its three established businesses, each of which is a leader in enabling mobility in its respective market segment: NSN, a leader in network infrastructure and services; HERE, a leader in mapping and location services; and Advanced Technologies, a leader in technology development and licensing.

    Nokia will retain its headquarters in Finland. Excluding the approximately 32,000 people planned to transfer to Microsoft, Nokia would have employed approximately 56,000 people at the end of the second quarter 2013.

    "Today is an important moment of change and reinvention for Nokia and its employees," said Nokia Chairman and interim CEO Mr. Siilasmaa. "With our strong corporate identity, leading assets and talent, and from a position of renewed financial strength, we will build Nokia's next chapter."

    NSN, a wholly-owned business of Nokia since August 2013, is a leader in mobile broadband, and is focused on operating at the forefront of each generation of mobile technology, including pushing the boundaries of connecting people through LTE and future technologies. Nokia continues to manage NSN as a strong, independent entity.

    HERE will continue to focus on growing its industry-leading position through a broad location offering across mobile devices, connected devices, enterprise solutions and the automotive environment. HERE will continue to execute its strategy to become the leading independent location cloud platform company, offering mapping and location services across different screens and operating systems.

    Our Advanced Technologies business will build on several of Nokia's current CTO and Intellectual Property Rights activities.Advanced Technologies will explore new business opportunities through advanced research, development and concept products in areas such as connectivity, sensing and material technologies, as well as web and cloud technologies. At the same time, Advanced Technologies plans to continue to build Nokia's patent portfolio from this innovation and targets to expand its industry-leading technology licensing program, spanning technologies that enable mobility today and tomorrow.

    "Following this transaction, Nokia's financial situation is expected to be significantly stronger and its earnings profile significantly improved," said Nokia CFO and interim President Timo Ihamuotila. "We will have three well-positioned businesses, each a leader in its market. Overall, we will continue to focus on managing and maximizing the assets of Nokia Group prudently and pragmatically to create value for Nokia shareholders."

    Historical pro forma information and strategic evaluation
    This transaction is expected to be significantly accretive to Nokia earnings. In the first half 2013, Nokia Group net sales were EUR 11.5 billion and non-IFRS operating margin was 4.2%. On a pro forma basis assuming this transaction would have closed, Nokia Group net sales would have been EUR 6.3 billion and non-IFRS operating margin would have been 12.1% in the first half 2013.

    [See table with financial data at the link above]

    The transaction is also expected to significantly strengthen Nokia's financial position and Nokia targets to return to being an investment grade company. If this transaction as well as Nokia's acquisition of 50% of NSN would have closed before the end of the second quarter 2013, Nokia would have ended the quarter with gross cash of EUR 14.9 billion and net cash of EUR 7.8 billion, excluding transaction related expenses and taxes. Assuming repayment of financing facilities related to the NSN acquisition as well as Nokia's debt facilities of EUR 1.8 billion maturing before the end of the first quarter 2014, Nokia would have ended the second quarter 2013 with gross cash of EUR 11.4 billion and net cash of EUR 7.8 billion, excluding transaction related expenses and taxes. This compares to reported gross cash of EUR 9.5 billion and net cash of EUR 4.1 billion at the end of the second quarter 2013.

    Nokia's Board of Directors is conducting a strategy evaluation for Nokia Group between signing and closing of the transaction. This evaluation will comprise of evaluations of strategies for each of Nokia's three businesses and possible synergies between them, as well as an evaluation of the optimal corporate and capital structure for Nokia after the closing of the transaction. After this evaluation is complete, deemed excess capital is planned to be distributed to shareholders.

    Nokia expects to book a gain on sale of approximately EUR 3.2 billion from the transaction, excluding any potential tax implications, gains or losses related to currency translation differences triggered by the transaction. In connection with the transaction, Nokia will be required to evaluate whether the impact of the sale on future cash flows or operating results requires changes in the carrying values of any of its remaining assets or liabilities. This evaluation will include, among other things, a review of existing goodwill balances for impairment and the potential recoverability of deferred tax assets currently subject to valuation allowance. Additional assets and liabilities may require adjustment upon completion of our review.

    Nokia Leadership
    Nokia today announced changes to its leadership as a result of the proposed transaction. These changes, which are effective immediately, are designed to provide an appropriate corporate governance structure during the interim period following the announcement of this transaction.

    The Nokia Leadership Team will continue to consist of the current members, but with changes in positions and reporting lines as outlined below.

    Risto Siilasmaa will assume an interim CEO role for Nokia while continuing to serve in his role as Chairman of the Nokia Board of Directors. As part of his interim CEO role, Mr. Siilasmaa will, among other tasks, oversee strategy and have four direct reports: Michael Halbherr, Executive Vice President, HERE; Stephen Elop, Executive Vice President, Devices & Services; Timo Ihamuotila, Nokia CFO and interim President; and Jesper Ovesen, Executive Chairman of the NSN Board of Directors.

    To avoid the perception of any potential conflict of interest between now and the pending closure of the transaction, Stephen Elop will step aside as President and CEO of Nokia Corporation, resign from the Board of Directors, and will become Executive Vice President, Devices & Services. The following Nokia Leadership Team members will report to Mr. Elop: Marko Ahtisaari, Executive Vice President, Design; Jo Harlow, Executive Vice President, Smart Devices; Juha Putkiranta, Executive Vice President, Operations; Timo Toikkanen, Executive Vice President, Mobile Phones; and Chris Weber, Executive Vice President, Sales and Marketing.

    Timo Ihamuotila becomes President of Nokia for the interim period while also continuing to serve as CFO. Mr. Ihamuotila will assume the responsibility of chairing the Nokia Leadership Team. The following Nokia Leadership Team members will report to Mr. Ihamuotila: Louise Pentland, Executive Vice President and Chief Legal Officer; Henry Tirri, Executive Vice President and Chief Technology Officer; Juha Äkräs, Executive Vice President, Human Resources; and Kai Öistämö, Executive Vice President, Corporate Development.

    We expect that Mr. Elop, Ms. Harlow, Mr. Putkiranta, Mr. Toikkanen, and Mr. Weber would transfer to Microsoft at the anticipated closing.

    Mr. Ahtisaari has decided to again pursue entrepreneurial opportunities. He will step down from the Nokia Leadership Team and his position as Executive Vice President, Design, effective as from November 1, 2013. He will continue to work on activities related to the transaction through November 30, 2013. Effective November 1, 2013 Stefan Pannenbecker will start leading Design, reporting to Mr. Elop.

    This announcement does not change the current leadership for Nokia Solutions and Networks. Rajeev Suri will continue to serve as CEO, NSN, reporting to NSN's Board which continues to be chaired by Jesper Ovesen who continues to serve as NSN's Executive Chairman and reports to Mr. Siilasmaa.

    Nokia Board of Directors
    To avoid the perception of any potential conflict of interest between now and the pending closure of the transaction, Stephen Elop will resign from the Nokia Board of Directors effective today. The Nokia Board currently consists of the following nine members: Risto Siilasmaa, Chairman; Jouko Karvinen, Vice Chairman; Bruce Brown; Elizabeth Doherty; Henning Kagermann; Helge Lund; Mårten Mickos; Elizabeth Nelson and Kari Stadigh. As a result of Mr. Siilasmaa assuming the interim CEO role, and in line with good corporate governance, Mr. Siilasmaa will no longer be a member and Chairman of the Corporate Governance & Nomination Committee. The Corporate Governance and Nomination Committee currently consists of the following three members: Mr. Kagermann, Mr. Karvinen and Mr. Lund. The Board elected Mr. Karvinen as the Chairman of the Corporate Governance & Nomination Committee. The composition of the Personnel Committee and the Audit Committee remain unchanged.

    Extraordinary shareholders meeting and Nokia Board recommendation
    Under the terms of the agreement, the closing of the transaction will be subject to approval by Nokia shareholders. Nokia plans to hold an Extraordinary General Meeting on November 19, 2013 and to publish a notice of the meeting and make available more information on the transaction and its background later this month. Having thoroughly analysed the transaction and other alternatives available, the Board of Directors decided to enter into the transaction and recommends that Nokia shareholders vote to confirm and approve the sale of substantially all of the Devices & Services business to Microsoft at the Extraordinary General Meeting.

    Investor Conference Call
    Today, Nokia executives will hold an investor call at 3.00pm Finnish time. A live webcast of the conference call will be available at http://investors.nokia.com. Media representatives can view the webcast or listen in at +1 706 634 5012, conference ID 45390451.

    Press Conference
    Nokia will host a press conference today on Tuesday at 11.00 a.m. EET in Dipoli, Espoo (Otakaari 24). Registration will start at 10 a.m., and the doors will open at 10.40 a.m. Due to space constraints, only media who show valid press credentials at the registration will be admitted. Media are encouraged to watch a live webcast of the press conference via: http://press.nokia.com.
There has been a conflict of interest from the very beginning since Stephen Elop came to Nokia.

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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 11:13    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Well, that is no surprise to anyone in this forum, I beleive...
If Elop really becomes new Microsoft CEO (roumours are around), any Nokia shareholder should sue him for fraud...
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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 17:16    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Microsoft has published document Strategic Rationale (pdf) with the following topics:
  • Accelerate Phone Share
  • Strengthen Overall Opportunity
  • Smart Acqusition
  • Strong Execution Plan
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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 17:35    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Nokia's board held over 50 meetings before the deal with Microsoft, see AllThingsD. Excerpt:
    Barcelona Rendezvous, 50 Nokia Board Meetings Led to Microsoft Deal
    Microsoft’s deal to acquire Nokia’s phone business has long been speculated as a possibility. But finding the right deal took dozens of meetings, months of work, and no small amount of creativity, according to the leaders of both companies.

    Nokia’s board and its committees alone had more than 50 meetings on the topic, Chairman and CEO Risto Siilasmaa said in a joint interview with Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer on Monday night.

    While Microsoft and Nokia talked frequently as part of their Windows Phone partnership, the recent deal can be traced to a meeting in February at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona between then-chairman Siilasmaa and Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

    Begun under the premise of how the two companies could improve their partnership, talk gradually shifted to whether a combination might make sense.

    “We have worked very hard on both sides — and together — in finding out the way to do a transaction,” Siilasmaa told AllThingsD.

    While the talks did not follow a linear path, both companies remained committed to being partners, Ballmer said.

    “The only question was: ‘What’s the structure of the partnership?’” Ballmer said.

    Many scenarios were considered, Ballmer added.

    “We had a Plan A, a Plan B, a Plan C,” Ballmer said. “And by the time we were done, we had A, A1, A-Prime, B, C, D, E.”

    He continued: “We looked at many many possibilities together, and ultimately took this one, with us buying all of Nokia’s phone business, becoming an innovation partner and customer of Here, and licensing patents from Nokia.”

    Much of the tough work, Ballmer said, was in negotiating an arrangement around the mapping business. That business is staying with Nokia, but Microsoft remains a key customer, with the ability to do innovation work on top of Nokia’s platform.

    “That was important to us, because we think mapping is an absolutely critical service, as Nokia does, for the modern world,” he said.

    One of the other interesting parts is how it was Microsoft that ended up with the low-end mobile phone business. It’s clear why Nokia wouldn’t want to exit the growing smartphone business, but remain in the declining feature phone business. But how it fits with Microsoft is less obvious.

    Ballmer acknowledged that Microsoft was less familiar with that business.

    “The part of the Nokia business that comes to us in this acquisition, with which we’ve had to do the most learning over the last several months, is the mobile phone business,” he said.

    However, Ballmer talked up that unit as a way for Microsoft to better reach the next billion technology customers with both devices and services.

    Another significant shift in the talks came a week ago, as Ballmer announced his plans to step down within the next 12 months.

    Ballmer said that Siilasmaa and, later, CEO Stephen Elop, got a brief heads-up ahead of Ballmer’s announcement that he planned to step down, with Microsoft reiterating that it wanted to complete the Nokia deal.

    Asked whether Elop intends to be a candidate, Ballmer did the answering.

    “Our board is going through a private process,” Ballmer said. “We are considering internal and external candidates.”

    Under the current plan, Elop — now Nokia’s executive VP of devices and services — is set to be head of Microsoft’s devices business once the Nokia deal closes.

    We’re excited to welcome Stephen back to Microsoft, and our board is excited to run a private process,” Ballmer said.
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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 18:06    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

I don't think anyone here is really surprised by the news. In all reality, Microsoft essentially took ownership of Nokia in 2011 when the Windows Phone partnership began. This sale just makes it official on paper.

That being said, there have been some really great things coming out of Finland for the Lumia line over the past few months. I hope that trend continues and that the software products stay as Nokia exclusives.

What is interesting is most of the talk seems to focus around the HERE suite - which while nice is relatively small compared to the excellent photo suite.

I am assuming that Nokia will continue to operate under its own brand like Skype does.
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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 19:01    Post subject: Probably not a bad development for WP and Nokia phones   Reply with quote   

It could be a good thing if the Nokia part gets more say in the decisions around the development of WP. The Nokia organisation, like Jolla, have deep understandig of the phone space, something MS obviously lacks. More of their influence could lead to a better WP product.

Sad to see that so many European tech companies seem to be unable to compete with Asian and US rivals.
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PostPosted: Tuesday, 03.Sep.2013 20:05    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Intersting opinion:

Two analysts, Ben Thompson of Stratechary and Benedict Evans, assume that Microsoft had to buy Nokia because Nokia was going to stop making Windows Phones very soon.

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/analysts-microsoft-bought-nokia-because -nokia-was-going-to-stop-making-windows-phones-2013-9#ixzz2dr145F3g
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PostPosted: Wednesday, 04.Sep.2013 02:13    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Quote:

Two analysts, Ben Thompson of Stratechary and Benedict Evans, assume that Microsoft had to buy Nokia because Nokia was going to stop making Windows Phones very soon.

Let's be serious... I don't know who pays those guys for what they write, but it makes no sense whatsoever, unless we assume that it's simply to JUSTIFY what Microsoft has done.

Elop threatening Ballmer? What an insane idea. Suddenly switching to Android? We've all seen how long it took Nokia to switch to Windows Phone - a year. Can you imagine Nokia now wasting another year to switch to yet another platform? It might as well go bankrupt instantly instead. And, actually, in case of Android I guess it would take longer than with Windows Phone because Android allows (and takes) much more customization than the totally closed and fully controlled by Microsoft WP.

I think we've talked like a million of times about where Elop came from and what was his MISSION.

If Elop wasn't SENT by Microsoft to just GET Nokia for Microsoft, he wouldn't have killed Symbian and Harmattan (and Meltemi) as quickly as possible, and while it was harmful for Nokia as it was long before Nokia could start selling Windows Phones. If Elop was a TRUE CEO, a person who wanted to run an INDEPENDENT successful company, he would have waited with killing its existing operating systems until the company had ANYTHING ELSE to sell. He did not, and this way he simply RUINED Nokia.

Please remind yourself how the Nokia N9 was cancelled while there was still a high demand for it. It was the first and the ONLY phone that Nokia stopped selling after just EIGHT months and WHILE it was selling so well (2+ million units in 8 months). Even as spectacular failure as the N97 was sold three times longer. And the N9 was popular, loved and awarded. Despite high price, no subsidies, no promotion, no support and small software choice. It was the FIRST Nokia phone for half a decade that was considered a strong iPhone competitor. Yet Elop killed it as soon as he could.

Please remind yourself how everything had been done NOT to make the 808 PureView popular. Production much lower than demand, no promotion at all, awful plasticy casing (much uglier than all other models), very high price to scare everyone away, and more. Nokia Poland's official PR agency had *ONE* 808 PV unit for the entire Poland (a 38 million people country) - it took waiting weeks (if not months) in a long queue to get it for test/review. Nokia Poland's Developer support unit did not get *ANY* 808's to provide developers with. That's how Elop was taking care NOT to promote the 808.

Remind yourself how several other Symbian based phone models were cancelled (e.g. the Nokia 600) or not even announced.

And all that while Nokia did not yet have ANY Windows Phone model ready for shipment, and long before that. And while it was running out of money.

What he did was CLEARLY aimed at leaving Nokia with NO OTHER CHOICE but Microsoft. He destroyed everything and burned all the bridges. He even sold Nokia's HQ, knowing that the company SOON wouldn't need it. For the same reason Elop's family never came to Finland, knowing that Elop would SOON be back to the USA with his ACTUAL employer.

It was all about patents, know-how, and infrastructure. That's what Microsoft wanted, and that's EXACTLY what it got today. It had to take that long, it couldn't have been done faster, to avoid shareholder revolt, court trials and other things. And Nokia HAD TO be ruined first, so that Ballmer could pay LESS for it.

Kindly note how Nokia and its patents was bought for NEARLY TWICE LESS than what Microsoft paid for..... Skype (over $8.5 billion). Elop did ALL he could to let Microsoft get Nokia, as quickly as possible and as cheaply as possible. Mission 100% accomplished.

Just wait a couple months and see where Elop will be. It will be the best confirmation of what I wrote above.

Rest in peace Nokia, killed by Elop & Ballmer et consortes (not without help of greedy investors and useful idiots who even now can't stop believing that Elop was the savior).
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PostPosted: Wednesday, 04.Sep.2013 21:47    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

Wow, that s a very true and upsetting evaluation of the situation, both what happened and what will happen. It s so frustrating but Nokia is really "out of the way" now.
Windows 7 will be my last Redmond product for a very long time. I nearly despise this company and what it did to the last european manufacturer.

But how come that management of Nokia WAS SO STUPID to just let things happen, to not intervent, to not show a CEO it's boundaries?
Thats what puzzled me ALL THE TIME.

The thing i most dislike about the whole situation that i m not happy with all existing mobile OSs (not even Sailfish). The most promising platform to me is Firefox OS but i m tired of waiting all the time for a good new product to come.
Anyway, R.I.P Nokia and Rest in Pain Mr. Elop (rubber baron par excellence).
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PostPosted: Wednesday, 04.Sep.2013 22:19    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

An article trying to discuss why Nokia failed (hardware people more important than software people, historically, for example).

http://www.newyorker.com/online/blogs/currency/2013/09/where-nokia-wen t-wrong.html#!
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PostPosted: Thursday, 05.Sep.2013 03:36    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

ph,

Thanks for linking. Unfortunately, all these articles of so called "experts" are just stupid and annoying. When I see a sentence like "Nokia failed to understand the importance of SWITCHING TO SMARTPHONES IN 2007", I just can't force myself to waste a single second more on reading the rest.

I've been using Nokia smartphones since 1998 or so (the GEOS Communicators) and I'm more than sure that authors of such articles at that time didn't even know yet what a smartphone is. And now they tell me that between 1998 and 2007 I was wrong thinking that I use a smartphone and run a website (visited at that time by over 60,000 people A DAY) about smartphones. Really funny.

What "switching to smartphones in 2007"? Simple question: wasn't the 9210 Communicator in 2001 a smartphone? What SMARTPHONE FUNCTIONALITY did it lack compared to what authors of that article consider a smartphone in 2007? Didn't the 9210 (and all its successors) allow installing 3rd party software? It did (native C++, Java MIDP, Personal Java, OPL, and more). It had a larger and of higher resolution display than the iPhone 2G and 3G six years later. It had a WWW browser and an email client. And an Office suite (word/excel/powerpoint equivalents). And fax. And speakerphone. And media player. And best (until today) hardware keyboard. And true multitasking better than today's Android or iOS devices. In 2004 the 7700/7710 had a HUGE touch screen and finger-controlled UI. And a camera, with video recording. Its 640x320 touch screen was almost TWICE the resolution of the iPhone 2G-3G, 3-4 years before it. And the same applies to UIQ 2.x smartphones from Sony Ericsson, which since 2001 were providing AMAZING smartphone functionality. If not outdated hardware, I wouldn't have much problems with using an UIQ 2.x smartphone even today.

Saying that the smartphone was invented in 2007 is plainly stupid, idiotic and not worth even talking about.

Those who don't remember what the 9210, 7710 or UIQ phones were, please see here:

http://my-symbian.com/uiq/intro_p900.php
http://my-symbian.com/s80/review.php?name=general
http://my-symbian.com/s80/review.php?name=office
http://my-symbian.com/s80/review.php?name=internet
http://my-symbian.com/s90/7710_review.php

If those weren't smartphones (already in 2001-2004) then I don't know what is.

As we've discussed many times, where Nokia failed was its INTERNAL series of wrong decisions, like dumping two most advanced smartphone platforms of theirs (keyboard-based Series 80 and touch-based Series 90 / Hildon) and instead fully focusing on the most primitive platform they had - Series 60 - and having to waste years on developing it from scratch. Ask any 9210 or 9500 user what kind of disappointment and regression it was to have Series 60 instead of Series 80 on the E90 Communicator, even if the device was much superior hardware-wise. The S60 was simply UNCOMPARABLY WORSE than S80/S90/Hildon, even after several years of development and some tweaks to make it S80-like on the E90.

Another mistake was to force SonyEricsson to dump UIQ and switch to Nokia's aforementioned S60. This way all three superb and advanced Symbian based platforms were killed before Android or iOS appeared, and what remained on the Symbian side was JUST the pitiful Series 60 / S60 based on Symbian's Pearl RD that was never meant to be a touch-enabled platform. If instead of wasting MANY YEARS on trying to make primitive S60 an usable touch-based platform Nokia used the existing powerful touch-enabled Hildon platform they would have had a state-of-the-art touch smartphone long before the iPhone came out. Killing Hildon was the *****WORST***** decision in Nokia's entire history. When I was shown Hildon-based Nokia CX and MX smartphone prototypes in 2003 in Paris, I couldn't believe my eyes because they were so much ahead technologically at that time. The CX and MX could have been iPhone killers in early 2004, three years before the iPhone. And they just CANCELLED them, just like the 77xx series a year later. Some **idiots** (who now are considered ICONS of Nokia history) managed to force the whole Symbian development to switch to touch-LESS Series 60 instead, and spend 5 years on re-implementing on it (with miserable results) touch support from scratch.

Yet another mistake was wasting so many years on hesitating whether to make Maemo a smartphone platform or not. Four years wasted on using it on just niche products for geeks, not giving its development any decent priority, considering it just an experiment. Even the N900 in 2009 was released as a geek-only product in which Nokia execs didn't really believe until they sold 1m units, and only then they started to treat it seriously. So it's actually FIVE wasted years, until the N9 was made, but that's when Elop was already ruling Nokia, so he killed it instantly. If Nokia focused on Maemo development earlier, things would have looked completely different, just like with Hildon.

Fourth mistake was believing that they were so mighty that nothing could change it, ever. That's why all their phones were SO HEAVILY UNDERPOWERED hardware-wise, as they thought that Nokia logo could substitute for a faster CPU, more memory, bigger display or higher quality of casing. When competitors were releasing 156 MHz phones (like Sony Ericsson P800) Nokia was using 52 MHz processors (like on the 9210). When competitors had 16 MB RAM, Nokia had 8 MB, to earn more money. If Nokia wasn't so stingy that only very few high-end models in 2005-2009 had hardware graphics accelerators there would have been a lot of beautiful OpenGL-based games for Symbian. But with majority of phones not having a GPU, developers were using the lowest common denominator to make their games compatible with as many Symbian phone models as possible, and thus hardly any game was OpenGL based and most of them were ugly and pathetic. Then the iPhone came with a good GPU and beatiful OpenGL games and a smooth UI with transparencies and transitions instantly attracted everyone.

Lastly, Nokia MASSIVELY scr*wed up with how they initially implemented the Symbian Signed security. Insanely high signing prices, slow and complicated submission procedures, etc. literally scared thousands of developers away. It took Nokia around 2 years to change it to something usable, but the damage had been done. When Symbian 9.x was made one of Symbian Ltd. directors asked me to become a 'signing authority' for freeware applications (I refused) and at that time I told them that the process in its current form would have a very bad impact on 3rd party software development, and that they should consider doing it like it is now on Android (permissions that the user accepts or not). No one wanted to listen, they did it their way.

Those were the true reasons, and not "failing to switch to smartphones". As much as I've been criticizing Nokia in the past years, one thing just cannot be denied: when Nokia was making smartphones Apple didn't even know what a smartphone is, and Google didn't even exist.

But the worst thing is that I'm slowly starting to see names of those who made all those wrong decisions now 'getting interested' in Jolla. For the time being only as "friends" and "supporters", but soon maybe - God forbid - as investors or experts.... Guess what kind of expertise they can provide.

donomar,

Quote:

But how come that management of Nokia WAS SO STUPID to just let things happen, to not intervent, to not show a CEO it's boundaries?

It was a long and carefully planned process. Microsoft knew that acquiring a company like Nokia had to be done WISELY.
Check historical data of how Nokia board members were changing. Note how there were less and less Finns in it, replaced by more and more Americans. At first, certain huge and rich US based funds and investors (also being serious Microsoft shareholders) started acquiring more and more of Nokia stock. When they had enough, they were in position to have impact on the Nokia Board makeup. And they did it, slowly 'injecting' their people. And when they not only had enough shares but also enough 'trusted' Board members, they were in position to appoint the new CEO. And they did it. And what happened then is what I wrote earlier. The new CEO did his job and his 'trusted' Board members and shareholders didn't mind it at all. What they lost on Nokia shares they earned on something else, guess what.

Microsoft is a SERIOUS and powerful company, whose entire history has been about ACQUIRING other businesses and their products and know-how and then using it as their own. That's their modus operandi. If at some point they decided to get Nokia (probably not much after they failed with Sendo), then it could have been as long as 5-6-7 years ago, and since that point they were very slowly and very carefully (remembering what they did wrong with Sendo) following their plan, until they fully succeeded yesterday. And Elop was just a small part of that plan.
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PostPosted: Thursday, 05.Sep.2013 17:08    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

@Michal well, they also write this: "it came up with its first smartphone back in 1996, and built a prototype of a touch-screen, Internet-enabled phone at the end of the nineties". It is just the semantics... This way or another:

1. It looks like Nokia ignored the customer experience of th UI (abandoning something or not developing something further)

2. They were too certain of thenselves.

3. They decided not to follow a mass market customer in the smartphone market. You can judge something with the lense of geeks like these on this forum, or the average consumer. What is giving u bucks and survival is the average consumer, as Android or iOS showed.

Me personally, I was using E90 or SE P1. Those UIs were for sure more "difficult" then iOS or Android. And either u produce UIs for professionals or for average customers, and u count the bucks.

Just my two cents...
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PostPosted: Thursday, 05.Sep.2013 20:49    Post subject:   Reply with quote   

What do you think about Microsoft now? Is its target to make only smartphones with its own brand or are there any more else?
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