Microsoft to abandon mobile phones, X-series Android smartphones: internal Jo Harlow memo

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This is the end of Nokia as we know it. Apart from slashing 12,500 jobs from Nokia’s Devices and Services business that Microsoft acquired earlier this year, the company is also phasing out its feature phone and Nokia X Android smartphones. BGR India has access to an internal email sent by Jo Harlow to employees.

Some excerpts from the mail:

  • Placing Mobile Phone services in maintenance mode: With the clear focus on Windows Phones, all Mobile Phones-related services and enablers are planned to move into maintenance mode, effective immediately. This means there will be no new features or updates to services on any Mobile Phones platform as a result of these plans. We plan to consider strategic options for Xpress Browser to enable continuation of the service outside of Microsoft. We are committed to supporting our existing customers, and will ensure proper operation during the controlled shutdown of services over the next 18 months. A detailed plan and timeline for each service will be communicated over the coming weeks.
  • Transitioning developer efforts and investments: We plan to transition developer efforts and investments to focus on the Windows ecosystem while improving the company’s financial performance. To focus on the growing momentum behind Windows Phone, we plan to immediately begin ramping down developer engagement activities related to Nokia X, Asha and Series 40 apps and shift support to maintenance mode. We are committed to supporting our existing Mobile Phones customers, and will ensure proper operation during the planned controlled shutdown of services over the next 18 months.

In his memo to employees, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella too mentioned that the end of Nokia’s Android smartphones is near.

Second, we are working to integrate the Nokia Devices and Services teams into Microsoft. We will realize the synergies to which we committed when we announced the acquisition last September. The first-party phone portfolio will align to Microsoft’s strategic direction. To win in the higher price tiers, we will focus on breakthrough innovation that expresses and enlivens Microsoft’s digital work and digital life experiences. In addition, we plan to shift select Nokia X product designs to become Lumia products running Windows. This builds on our success in the affordable smartphone space and aligns with our focus on Windows Universal Apps.