Microsoft & Nokia Sign Agreement Early-Acutely Aware of Time Pressure

Nokia's Stephen Elop & Microsoft's Steve Ballmer

Nokia's Stephen Elop & Microsoft's Steve BallmerTwo recent mobile platform analyst projections have placed Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform as a solid if distant second place behind Android in 2015. This is difficult to imagine even among Windows Phone fans like me given the platform’s distant fourth place position in 2011. The most obvious interpretation is that the 2015 projections are based on the assumption that Microsoft’s partnership with Nokia will be very successful. And, yet, no one has seen any indication of exactly what Nokia will deliver or when it will be available. There’s been some speculation that a Nokia Windows Phone product will not be available until 2012. The common wisdom is that Microsoft and Nokia need to show evidence of a successful strategy sometime significantly earlier. So, it is interesting to note the wording of Microsoft’s press release title regarding their joint work with Nokia.

Nokia and Microsoft Sign Definitive Agreement Ahead of Schedule

Note the words “Ahead of Schedule”. Later, in the press release text body, they write: In addition to agreeing to the terms of their partnership, including joint contributions to the development of the new ecosystem, Nokia and Microsoft also announced significant progress on the development of the first Nokia products incorporating Windows Phone.

The press release also highlights the previously announced division of app focus by the two companies. Nokia will focus on imaging and mapping (navigation) while Microsoft will focus on search, productivity, advertising, gaming and social media.