With the recent announcement that Microsoft is laying off 18,000 employees, coupled its Nokia division abandoning its entry-level Android handset efforts, both opinions and epitaphs are swirling. Is Nokia close to anything resembling an independent company? Brighthand‘s forum had its share to say.
Contributor Mi An had both a brief lament for Nokia and skepticism for the decisions that led to the apparent downsizing.
I always admired certain Nokia hardware from a distance, before they got into generic slab production. It was a brave company. I commented often in the early days on the then-former MS exec’s decisions that always, (not so) shockingly, put MS’s well-being above Nokia’s. That the now returned MS Executive VP [Stephen] Elop [Former CEO of Nokia prior to the buyout by Microsoft] is the one to lower the final boom surprises me not at all. “Hello there” indeed. Hook’s wolf in grandma’s clothing analogy is very apt.
Some have argued that Nokia never could have managed a multiplatform strategy and it wasn’t worth trying Android at all given Samsung’s dominance, but 1) Samsung wasn’t overwhelmingly dominant in 2010 or 2011, and the lead position was changing hands rapidly, with HTC dominating in Android 1.x and Moto surging in 2.x. It was a dynamic environment. 2) Samsung ultimately achieved dominance with the sort of broad approach that Nokia excelled at before Elop (the approach HTC took before the blogosphere taunted them into One-size-fits-all).
Forum moderator CLeonard saw parallels to the experimental mess–and awkward dilemma, as both the creator of the platform and a major licensee–that Google got itself into by buying Motorola, and foresaw a similar end.
Seems very similar to Google’s acquisition of Motorola. Buy a struggling company for their assets and intellectual property. Fail to utilize this in a profitable way. Have to wonder if MS will look to spin Nokia off. If so, who would even be potential buyers?
Then again, there were the more pragmatic attitudes. Hook noted that Microsoft couldn’t toss away Nokia the way Google did Motorola:
Not quite equivalent. They need [Nokia] to produce hardware for WP [Windows Phone] because, honestly, no one else seems to want to. They just don’t need that many Nokia people to do it.
Some others viewed it as a necessary housecleaning after an era of Microsoft mismanagement. mtidmarsh put it very simply:
From what I’ve read, this is a move that resembles [Current Microsoft CEO Satya] Nadella cleaning up [Former Microsoft CEO] Steve Ballmer’s mess. I think [Nadella] fully believes that the Nokia acquisition was a huge mistake and as [CLeonard] mentioned, I wouldn’t be surprised if Microsoft decided to spin Nokia off.
These are just a few of the many discussions going on in the Brighthand forums. Got a tech problem you need help with? An opinion on the latest news? Or just something you’re curious about and want an answer to? Sign up for the Brighthand forums and join the conversation today.