You can expect to see new Nokia phones and tablets in the coming years, but they won’t be from the same Nokia you might remember from the past.
Microsoft said Wednesday that it has agreed to sell the Nokia branding rights for use on feature phones to HMD global Oy (HMD), a new company in Finland. The company has the right to create “Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets for the next ten years,” giving Nokia Technologies, owned by Microsoft, royalties from Nokia-branded phone sales.
Sound confusing? Just think of it like this: a company bought the rights to build new phones using the Nokia name, but the products you’ll see weren’t made by the Nokia you might remember from a few years ago.
In addition to this, Microsoft is selling off the rest of its feature phone business – “including manufacturing, sales and distribution,” to FIH Mobile Limited, which is owned by Hon Hai Precision and is otherwise known as Foxconn. FIH will handle the “sales, marketing and distribution of Nokia-branded mobile phones and tablets,” Microsoft said.
Microsoft is effectively freeing itself from the feature phone assets and the Nokia brand name that it acquired when it purchased the Nokia’s mobile phone business.