Microsoft To Buy Nokia’s Handset Business For $7.2 Billion

Source: Mark Stevenson / NBC News

Two years after hitching its fate to Microsoft’s Windows Phone software, Nokia collapsed into the arms of the software giant, agreeing to sell its main handset business for 5.44 billion euros ($7.2 billion).

Nokia, which will continue as a maker of networking equipment and holder of patents, was once the world’s dominant handset manufacturer but was long since overtaken by Apple and Samsung in the highly competitive market for more powerful smartphones.

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, who was hired away from Microsoft by the Finnish company in 2010, will rejoin Microsoft after the deal is completed, the companies said.

Nokia and Microsoft have been trying to make inroads in the smartphone market as part of a partnership forged in 2011. Under the alliance, Nokia’s Lumia smartphones have run on Microsoft’s Windows software, but those devices haven’t emerged as a popular alternative to the iPhone or an array of Android-powered devices spearheaded by Samsung Electronics’ smartphones and tablets.

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