Microsoft and Nokia in smartphone tie-up

Microsoft and Nokia are to announce a deal that will see a mobile version of Microsoft Office made available on Nokia smartphones as part of a defensive strategy to claw back share.

Nokia n96 smartphone
Nokia n96 smartphone

Nokia will hope the move will give it a much-needed boost in the smartphone market, as it continues to lose share to rivals including Research in Motion’s (RIM) Blackberry device.

Both the Windows Mobile operating system and Nokia’s Symbian platform have failed to make as much impact as the Apple iPhone, Google’s Android and Palm’s webOS.

Microsoft will also hope to strengthen its Office suite in an environment where the PC has become just one of many devices consumers are utilising to get information.

Stephen Elop, president of Microsoft’s business division, and Kai Oistamo, executive VP for Nokia Devices are expected to formally announce the strategic alliance this afternoon (August 12).

Nokia saw its share in the smartphone market fall to 45% in the second quarter of this year, compared to 47.4% in the same 2008 period.

In contrast, RIM’s share rose 18.7%, which was up 17.3% on the same period last year.

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