Report : Nokia Was Testing Android On Lumia
Back in February of 2011 Microsoft and Nokia entered into a partnership that made Windows Phone “its primary smartphone strategy.” While Nokia reportedly represents over 80% of all the Windows Phone handsets sold, their market share has slowly declined.
Before Microsoft decided to spend a whopping $7.2 billion to purchase Nokia’s Devices & Services, Nokia was considering options – a ‘plan B’ of sorts. According to a report in the New York Times, Nokia was actively testing Android on Lumia devices.
“A team within Nokia had Android up and running on the company’s Lumia handsets well before Microsoft and Nokia began negotiating Microsoft’s $7.2 billion acquisition of Nokia’s mobile phone and services business, according to two people briefed on the effort who declined to be identified because the project was confidential. Microsoft executives were aware of the existence of the project, these people said.”
This isn’t entirely surprising. Many people thought that Android would’ve been a smart route for the Finnish company to take. These same people noted that Microsoft executives were certainly aware that Nokia was testing Android on Lumia devices before and during the negotiations. They also made clear that Android was not a part of discussions between the two companies, even though it was “widely recognized” that it was possible Nokia would be using Android on smartphones in the future.
Notably, Nokia had an option to exit its partnership with Microsoft at the end of 2014 and may have used the threat of switching to Android as tool in its dealings with the company.