Nokia wound up its phone division which to sold to Microsoft only later to turn out being a disastrous move for Microsoft, which it eventually wrote off. The agreement in place didn’t allow Nokia to return to the smartphone business but that particular clause no longer holds and in May this year, the company announced a new partnership of licensing its brand and intellectual property to the newly created HMD Global to re-enter the smartphone business riding along Android.
The fruition of this arrangement is the announcement of a phone’s section on Nokia’s website that will be managed by HMD Global for a duration that stretches for a period of 10 years. New Nokia Android powered smartphones and tablets will hit the market in early 2017 and they will be sold alongside the legacy Nokia feature phones whose business Microsoft sold to FIH Mobile, a subsidiary of Foxconn. Both HMD and FIH have an agreement in place to steer Nokia’s global business of branded Smartphones and tablets.
Before it sold off its phone business to Microsoft, its smartphones under the Lumia brand were powered by Microsoft’s Windows Phone while its feature phones ran the proprietary Symbian OS. Both trailed behind iOS and Android in terms of Marketshare as Nokia was relegated to the likes of Blackberry with barely a noticeable market share.
However, before they threw in the towel, they had experimentations with a forked version of Android that shipped with the Nokia X which was eventually axed by Microsoft. Today’s announcement offers a breath of life to the much loved brand whose boycotting of Android had almost led to its demise.