In an interview to The Next Web, Nokia HERE Maps executive revealed that Nokia is going to wind down the development of HERE apps for Windows Phone devices. Since HERE’s parent company Nokia was selling Lumia Windows Phone devices in the past two years, HERE location services and apps were mainly exclusive to Windows Phone devices. Now, after the acquisition of Nokia’s Devices and Services unit by Microsoft, HERE group has now changed their focus. They have selected iOS and Android as their platform of choice. Winding down development means Nokia’s HERE won’t deliver any updates to the Windows Phone apps in the near future and they have pushed it into maintenance mode.
“It was always the ambition to be on Android, we just took a decision at the beginning of the year to accelerate the program,” explained Fernback, in a frank opening to our interview. “And also to ensure when we talk about apps, we’re serving both common platforms, which is, of course, Android and iOS.”
“As a result of the transaction, we’re having to wind down our Windows Phone app development and shift it over towards Android and iOS,” explains Fernback.Fernback did stress that support for Windows Phone isn’t being phased out completely, not at the moment at least. It’s just limiting the resources it throws at the platform, including time and money spent developing for it. “It’s a dialogue we’re having [with Microsoft], so we will see where it takes us,” he continues.
One good news is that Nokia now has a master codebase which they have structured it in a way to be platform agnostic. So if they decide to invest in Windows Phone app again, they would take that new codebase and compile it for Windows. Hopefully, Microsoft can take over the development of HERE Maps suite on Windows Phone platform in the future.
Update: Nokia has now officially sent a statement saying that they have not yet stopped the development of HERE apps on Windows Phone devices. Read more about it here.