Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 13th Sep 2013 23:56 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless

A team within Nokia had Android up and running on the company's Lumia handsets well before Microsoft and Nokia began negotiating Microsoft’s $7.2 billion acquisition of Nokia's mobile phone and services business, according to two people briefed on the effort who declined to be identified because the project was confidential. Microsoft executives were aware of the existence of the project, these people said.

Another person said the idea of Nokia using Android wasn't a part of Microsoft’s discussions with the company about an acquisition, even though that was widely recognized as a possibility.

Windows Phone never fit into Nokia's DNA. It's too closed, too external, too controlled; Nokia had little influence over its own destiny with Windows Phone. It's not surprising that many of the brightest minds in the company left in the wake of the Windows Phone announcement (such as the team now at Jolla).

Nokia should have gone Android.

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Comment by joekiser
by joekiser on Sat 14th Sep 2013 01:00 UTC
joekiser
Member since:
2005-06-30

The wife and I were just discussing last week how a Nokia built Android phone would have murdered anything currently on the market. The dream phone we conjured up had a 41 Megapixel camera, removable microSD slot, FM tuner/transmitter, and Ovi Maps in place of Google Maps. There was plenty that Nokia could have done hardware wise to differentiate themselves from the plastic slabs currently on the market. The only thing we disagreed on was size ... I liked something in the N8 size, while she preferred something closer to her Nexus 4.

It's easy to claim that Android was the clear option and Elop was an idiot, but let's go back to February 2011. Nokia had always followed its own way and the deal with Microsoft was a good idea to continue their product differentiation while also capitalizing on the enterprise market that Blackberry was shedding. At the time, Android was just one of many smartphone OSes on the market trying to catch up to iOS. There was WebOS, Bada, Blackberry, WP7, and still hope that there would be a Meego release (remember it took months for Elop to admit that Symbian and Meego would be killed off). Windows Phone had just as many shortcomings as any other OS, and iOS was way out in the lead of everything. Android also had the looming Oracle lawsuit and patent uncertainty to deal with. Fast forward 2½ years and Android is _dominant_. We no longer hear the phrase "this is the release where Android finally catches up with iPhone" because Android has silently matured beyond iOS. The fact that we can say that Android is the obvious choice is a testament to how far it has come in a short time. Windows Phone, on the other hand, suffers from a slower pace of product updates.

By the way, this "rumor" that Nokia was internally testing Android is not really news. This is a market with exactly THREE practical operating systems: one of which you already own, one of which is open-source and free for everybody with 80% of the market, and one that is closed to everybody. What would have been real news is if Nokia were NOT testing Android, or if they were secretly testing Sailfish OS internally (one could hope, right).

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