On his first day as the head of Microsoft’s head of devices business, Stephen Elop held an AMA session for general audience after addressing employees at the former Nokia House. One of the recurring questions people have is accusations about him being the Trojan Horse for Microsoft the destroyed Nokia’s value and made it a takeover target for Microsoft. Unfazed, Elop answered all questions mentioning that it was not him alone but Nokia’s board as well that was with him on the decisions that were made.
“As for the Trojan horse thing, I have only ever worked on behalf of and for the benefit of Nokia shareholders while at Nokia. Additionally, all fundamental business and strategy decisions were made with the support and approval of the Nokia board of directors, of which I was a member,” Elop answered.
He was also peppered with questions about his motives for killing Symbian, MeeGo and Meltemi platforms and going for Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform. ” I know that there is a lot of emotion around some of the hard decisions that we had to make. Back in late 2010 and 2011, we carefully assessed the state of the internal Nokia operating system efforts. Unfortunately, we could not see a way that Symbian could be brought to a competitive level with, for example, the iPhone that had shipped THREE years earlier! And the Meego effort was significantly delayed and did not have the promise of a broad enough portfolio soon enough. We had to make a forceful decision to give Nokia the chance to compete again,” he clarified.
Elop also mentioned that Microsoft was committed to carrying forward with the Nokia X series and that these phones have already led to tens of thousands of new activations for Microsoft services. “Microsoft acquired the mobile phones business, inclusive of Nokia X, to help connect the next billion people to Microsoft’s services. Nokia X uses the MSFT cloud, not Google’s. This is a great opportunity to connect new customers to Skype, outlook.com and Onedrive for the first time. We’ve already seen tens of thousands of new subscribers on MSFT services,” he said.