We have got some good and bad news for you from Jo Harlow’s internal memo to former Nokia employees, that is Microsoft Mobile division. First, Microsoft is completely stopping the development of Nokia X, Nokia Asha and Nokia S40 device development. All these projects will be in maintenance mode before reaching the end of life in 2016. The good news is that Microsoft will be laser focused on Windows Phone development from now on. Second, our beloved Nokia MixRadio and mildly popular Xpress browser teams might become a spin-off of Microsoft or they might be sold to other companies. Currently, even though there is no solid plans, Microsoft is evaluating them.
For now, just keep in mind that Microsoft’s flagship engineering efforts are now towards new flagship products timed with the next release of Windows and Windows Phone.
Jo Harlow’s email excerpt,
- Transitioning developer efforts and investments: We plan to transition developer efforts and investments to focus on the Windows ecosystem while improving the company’s financial performance. To focus on the growing momentum behind Windows Phone, we plan to immediately begin ramping down developer engagement activities related to Nokia X, Asha and Series 40 apps and shift support to maintenance mode. We are committed to supporting our existing Mobile Phones customers, and will ensure proper operation during the planned controlled shutdown of services over the next 18 months.
- Placing Mobile Phone services in maintenance mode: With the clear focus on Windows Phones, all Mobile Phones-related services and enablers are planned to move into maintenance mode, effective immediately. This means there will be no new features or updates to services on any Mobile Phones platform as a result of these plans. We plan to consider strategic options for Xpress Browser to enable continuation of the service outside of Microsoft. We are committed to supporting our existing customers, and will ensure proper operation during the controlled shutdown of services over the next 18 months. A detailed plan and timeline for each service will be communicated over the coming weeks.