The moment that sparked the Nokia-Windows deal
Nokia signed its deal with Microsoft a week after top executives realised their MeeGo software wasn’t ready to take the company forward.
In the weeks before Nokia allied itself with Microsoft, the handset maker had been hoping the MeeGo operating system would resurrect the company, which had been struggling to compete in a smartphone market dominated by Apple’s iPhone and handsets running Android.
It was truly an ‘oh s**t’ moment and really, really painful to realise where we were
According to an interview with Bloomberg Businessweek, only a week before the Microsoft deal was agreed Nokia realised the MeeGo platform was in trouble.
After a detailed examination of the timeline for Meego, chief development officer Kai Oistämö spoke to Nokia boss Stephen Elop and had to deliver some seriously bad news.
“It was truly an ‘oh s**t’ moment and really, really painful to realise where we were,” Oistämö revealed to Bloomberg, which said the developer still struggles to hold back tears at the memory.
“MeeGo had been the collective hope of the company and we’d come to the conclusion that the emperor had no clothes. It’s not a nice thing.”
After drawing up a roadmap for the operating system, Nokia realised it was on track to release only three handsets based on Meego by 2014, which was considered far too slow to save Nokia from terminal decline.
Nokia was left with two choices: start making Android handsets or agree a deal with Microsoft. The latter was done inside a week, with the final pieces of the puzzle put into place over a curry in London.
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