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article imageNokia is intending to return to smartphones in 2016 after all

By James Walker     Jun 19, 2015 in Technology
After first hearing that Nokia will be resuming smartphone production again and then the subsequent denial of any such intent, the company's chief executive has now said that Nokia is indeed looking to get back into smartphones again in 2016.
Nokia sold its loss-making mobile devices business, primarily consisting of the Lumia range of Windows Phones, to Microsoft in 2014. Since then, an agreement has meant that it cannot use its own name on smartphones again until 2016 when a brand license with Microsoft will expire.
Microsoft has continued to release some more Lumia devices with Nokia branding as well as an update to the 105 feature phone since the acquisition was completed. Many have been wondering whether Nokia will take up the opportunity to get back into its former business in 2016.
Reuters reports that Nokia's chief executive Rajeev Suri told Germany's Manager Magazin that the company is indeed looking to do just that though, contradicting a previous denial from the company.
Suri said that Nokia is now planning to begin designing new smartphone devices once the agreement with Microsoft expires. It will license the designs for others to build, as it has done with the Nokia N1 tablet that is built by Foxconn.
According to Reuters, Suri told Manager Magazin: "We will look for suitable partners. Microsoft makes mobile phones. We would simply design them and then make the brand name available to license."
The news comes as former Nokia chief executive Stephen Elop leaves Microsoft in its latest managerial shake-up which sees Elop's former devices team merge with the Windows and software group, headed singularly by Terry Myerson.
Some analysts have interpreted this as a move by Microsoft to concentrate more solidly on the software markets where it still has a strong presence. Despite strong sales of its Surface Pro 3 tablet, Microsoft's devices group as a whole is still struggling in the face of strong competition from Apple products and Android-powered devices.
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