Where Now For Windows Phones?
Microsoft's announcement yesterday that it was writing off its acquisition of Nokia and laying off thousands of staff marked a watershed in the decline of the once mighty phone business. Having already seen massive workforce cuts as part of the attempted turnarounds under Nokia and subsequently in Microsoft's ownership this latest blow is a big one.
For Windows fans there are two things to take away from the announcement. Firstly, that Microsoft will continue to deliver phones with the Lumia brand, although without the confusion that sees too many phones fighting for too few users. It is likely that there will be only three Microsoft Lumia lines going forward: a flagship device, a business focused device and an entry-level device for emerging markets.
It's a strategy that appears to be designed to encourage the growth of third-party OEMs in the Windows mobile space. It remains to be seen whether that's an achievable ambition. Until Microsoft can show that it is tempting OEMs like Samsung, Sony and HTC to regularly release and update Windows devices, it may find that the future doesn't start to look much brighter after all.