April 23 ,2014 | by Sarah Parkin

Microsoft could get rid of Nokia brand

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Microsoft stands primed and ready to take over Nokia, and it could be planning to do away with the famous brand name.

There was a time when virtually everyone carried a Nokia phone in their pocket. Popular models such as the 3210 and 3310 enjoyed large market shares. Almost everyone knew someone who had a Nokia device, at least in key markets in Europe and the US. But with Microsoft poised to take the company over, one of the most recognisable names in technology could be about to disappear.

 

A leaked letter addressed to suppliers and obtained by NokiaPowerUser says that Nokia Oyj could be renamed Microsoft Mobile Oy and turned into a Microsoft subsidiary owned entirely by the tech giant. In English, Mashable explains this will mean the hardware business, Nokia Corporation, instead becomes Microsoft Mobile when the deal is sealed.

If the deal is closed as planned on April 25th, it is unclear whether all Nokia devices will be renamed along with the company or whether the brand name will stay the same.

The name Nokia doesn’t necessarily carry the weight it once did. In fact, the company has seen its fortunes decline in recent years. It has not been able to repeat the success of phones such as the 3210 with its newer models in the smartphone era.

This is largely thanks to the huge competition from Apple, Samsung and smaller rivals such as HTC and LG – either these firms had much smaller market shares in the traditional mobile phone market or simply did not exist.

 

Microsoft, meanwhile, is hoping to tap into the years of expertise built up at Nokia to finally make an impact in the smartphone market. It still has plenty of potential, but Microsoft has hardly managed to rival the success of other major operating systems (OS).

Commentators have picked up on the fact that the Windows Phone OS has not made much of a dent in the leads that Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android have built up. The few places where it is gaining ground are markets where cheaper Nokia phones running Windows are selling well, so Microsoft may be looking at focusing its efforts there.

But why change the name? The First Post’s Tech2 points out that Nokia has a devoted fan base in India that Microsoft hasn’t reached, meaning it would be more worthwhile to keep the original brand. Either way, the company has not confirmed what will become of the Nokia name.

Sarah Parkin

Sarah Parkin used to work as News Writer for LSBF.  Sarah is specialised in finance, technology and business news.

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