Between the closing of Nokia’s acquisition, its biggest employee shake-up ever and the recent surprising Surface Pro 3 introduction, you can definitely say it’s been an eventful past few months in Microsoft’s Redmond camp.
It feels silly to even begin talking about a purportedly canceled device that no one can be certain was ever real, but there’s no smoke without fire and all that, so it’s safe to assume the Nokia “McLaren” did indeed exist in pre-release prototype form.
Microsoft completed its $7.2 billion acquisition of the Nokia Devices and Services Division, taking in almost 25,000 employees across the globe. As with every other merger, there’s a high chance of layoffs since the companies don’t want redundant positions. There have been rumors circulating all over the internet that Microsoft may axe over 10,000 employees in the coming week. Well, it turns out its way more than that. Recently, Satya Nadella sent out an email to the employees, notifying there will be over 18,000 job cuts in the next year.
Inexpensive Chrome OS-running notebooks, aka Chromebooks, are definitely moving up the PC market ranks, against all odds and in spite of a painfully sluggish start back in 2011.
It’s no big secret that Nokia Lumia 520 sales kept Microsoft’s shaky Windows Phone boat from sinking these past 15 months or so, and while the uber-affordable handheld always had minuscule profit margins, it at least maintained Nokia and MS in the limelight.
Nokia is reportedly in the midst of a major rebranding and reorganizing process, which should ultimately see its Lumias baptized as “Nokia by Microsoft” devices. Additionally, Lumia tabs could replace Surfaces altogether, and higher-end Android handhelds than the current humble X line are looming large on the horizon, this time entirely conceived by Microsoft.
Microsoft has been working diligently on eroding Apple’s leadership in the tablet and PC space for years now, trying hard to convince the world the Surface line can replace both iPads and MacBooks. Based on sales numbers, MS is a long way from changing mentalities, but Redmond continues to push. And push, and push.
Mere hours after announcing the commencement of Nokia Lumia 635’s global rollout with a handful of European and Asian markets, Microsoft has kicked pre-orders into gear stateside. Sadly, those are now closed, meaning someone probably jumped the gun sans approval.
It’s been hardly 4 months since Nokia released its first Android handset. Many thought that Microsoft will simply discontinue the handset to promote their own operating system, but it seems the Redmond giant has something else in mind. Recently, the company released its successor dubbed as the Nokia X2, which comes with slightly beefed up specifications.
Hot on the heels of the 3G-only Nokia Lumia 630, which went on sale in Asia more than a month ago and in certain European markets a few weeks back, the 4G-enabled Lumia 635 just debuted on store shelves “throughout many parts” of the old continent and the Asia-Pacific region.
Although it’s been barely four months since Nokia took the wraps off its surprising first Android handhelds, you shouldn’t rule out the imminent debut of a very swift X sequel. Dubbed X2, the slightly improved low-ender was benchmarked a few weeks back, and it’s entirely possible it’ll see daylight in three days and some change.
Never mind the desktop, or the living room. Microsoft is now eying the next frontier: The floor.