Microsoft just announced its plan to cut 18,000 jobs, mostly focused on its newly acquired Nokia workforce, but the company had even more bad news to share. Select planned members of the Nokia X Android lineup are on the way out, Microsoft said in a public memo, confirming plans to transition towards offering cheaper Windows Phone “Lumia” branded devices instead.
CEO Satya Nadella confirmed the news, burying the death of Nokia X at the bottom of a memo he released to the public earlier today. He notes that Microsoft needs to do better with both premium and low-cost smartphones. On the cheaper end, the company plans to “shift select Nokia X product designs” to run Windows software instead of Nokia’s modified version of Android.
Stephen Elop, the former Nokia CEO and current Microsoft head of devices, also offered a few more details on the company’s plans for Nokia X. Upcoming “designs and products” for future Nokia X devices will instead show up in the Lumia lineup. He adds that while the transition will begin immediately Microsoft won’t stop selling or supporting its current Nokia X models for the time being.
Nokia X always felt more like an experiment than a real product, but the company claimed it saw strong sales for the low-cost Android phones, especially in China. We’re not surprised to hear that Microsoft is killing off the Android line-up. It makes sense to offer all its devices under a unified Lumia banner, rather than support multiple competing brands and operating systems.