Rumors have been floating for some time that Windows Phone OEM Nokia has been two-timing Microsoft by also having an Android phone project as a backup. Yesterday the Wall Street Journal added more fuel to dire by confirming that Nokia will expose an Android device at the Mobile World Congress trade show coming up in Barcelona this month. It might seem strange and surprising for Nokia to first handover its Windows Phone maker Microsoft in exchange for a $7.2 billion only to later build an Android powered device. But let’s not forget that Windows Phone was not able to challenge Android’s market share at the lower end of the Smartphone market in total. Maybe Nokia wants to switch to Android for budget devices and that could have Microsoft get a small piece of a large portion of smartphone market pie.
Editors at gadgetmix have added that had Microsoft not bought Nokia in first place and let it do the innovation that it has been famous for, this would not have happened.
The Android powered Nokia device would have preloaded Microsoft-Nokia services like Nokia Android app store instead of Google software and Google’s Play Store. The device would not be close to Vanilla Android with regard to its UI and instead would be a form of Android coupled with Nokiasoft making the interface in a way that it will resemble the Windows Phone. That is all so mixed up, confusing and complicated. Nokia engineers have had already been developing the Android device before they agreed to sell the mobile making division to Microsoft last year. Until now, it was not clear whether Nokia would move on with its project. However, since we now have the confirmation, it seems that the new CEO at Microsoft, Satya Nadella let the project continue.
Nokia is also planning a press conference at MWC. At the earnings call in January, Nokia reported that it has sold a total of 30 million Lumia devices during 2013. If Nokia could come up with an Android powered device, the sales would be expected to surpass this. There is no doubt that Windows Phone needs a much better growth strategy and perhaps backing it up with Android could be one of the way to achieve just that.
It will be interesting to see how the target market will respond to Nokia’s breaking news. Nokia no doubt has its share of loyal customers also impressed by Android. To finally have them merged on a product might welcomed news in the marketplace.