Nokia is all set to make its comeback in the first half of 2017 with its new range of smartphones that will run on Android. Android is an operating system developed by Google. Android currently holds 88% of the global smartphone market share. Nokia confirmed its comeback at the Capital Markets Day 2016 event. At this event the Finnish multinational company declared its agendas for the upcoming years.
The New Players: However, Nokia itself will not be manufacturing Nokia branded devices. HMD will develop, market and sale Nokia branded phones and accessories partnering with FIH Mobile Ltd. HMD Global Oy, branded as HMD, a new entity created earlier this year, is also a Finnish company. FIH Mobile Ltd manufactures iPhones for Apple. It is a subsidiary of the Taiwanese multinational electronics contract manufacturer Hon Hai Precision Industry Co Ltd., trading as Foxconn Technology Group. HMD signed an exclusive agreement with Nokia that entitles it to use Nokia’s brand and patents for next 10 years. Therefore, Nokia will be the owner of the brand and oversee the production.
HMD will make new phones alongside the existing Nokia branded feature phones. The first batch of Nokia branded Android smartphones will hit the market in the first half of 2017. However, unveil the model names and specifications of the new smartphones are yet to be revealed.
From Microsoft to HMD: Rumors of Android powered Nokia phones surfaced back in May 2016 when Microsoft sold the feature phone business to FIH Mobile Ltd & HMD Global Oy for $350 million. On closing of the deal Microsoft transferred all its feature phone assets, brands, services, care network and other assets. As part of the deal FIH Mobile Ltd also acquired Microsoft’s production facility in Vietnam. As a matter of fact, Microsoft had bought Nokia’s mobile phone business 2 years ago for $7.2 billion. However, Microsoft will continue to produce its own Windows devices with the help of its OEM (Original Equipment Manufacturer) partners like Acer, Alcatel, HP, Trinity & Vaio.