Microsoft Downsizes – 18,000 Layoffs, Kills off Nokia X

Posted by at 6:16 am on July 17, 2014

Microsoft today announced a sweeping company-wide re-organization that includes major changes to the mobile device business acquired from Nokia.

Of Microsoft’s 18,000 layoffs today, 12,500 are within the former Nokia units. Microsoft will combine the smartphone and feature phone units, with the feature phone operations continuing “for maximum efficiency with a smaller team.”

Nokia’s Android-based Nokia X lineup will be abandoned. Select future models will be reworked to run Windows Phone to address new low price points for Lumia. Existing Nokia X phones will be supported, but the software will not appear in any new phones. The company will focus primarily on Windows-Phone-powered Lumia phones, and tablets.

In an open email to employees, Stephen Elop explained that “the role of phones within Microsoft is different than it was within Nokia. Whereas the hardware business of phones within Nokia was an end unto itself, within Microsoft all our devices are intended to embody the finest of Microsoft’s digital work and digital life experiences, while accruing value to Microsoft’s overall strategy.”

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