Microsoft’s Windows Phone chief Andy Lees said in a statement that the Google-Motorola deal makes Windows Phone the only platform that offers “equal opportunity for all partners.”
Microsoft paid Nokia “billions” of dollars up front, which Nokia will use to help market its phones to carriers and consumers.
Nokia also got the exclusive right to provide mapping services for Windows Phones, the right to use Bing in all Nokia phones (not just smartphones), and the right to build a Nokia-branded app marketplace.
According to Nokia VP Chris Weber, the deal also includes greater freedom to change the Windows Phone interface and inside access to the Microsoft’s development plans.
It’s true that today’s Google-Motorola deal will certainly give Samsung, HTC, and other multiplatform vendors new reason to consider going with Windows Phone.
But one could just as easily argue that Microsoft’s deal with Nokia freed up Google to buy Motorola. Before that deal, the risk of driving Samsung and HTC to Microsoft was much higher. Now, they’re stuck between two software platforms each with a preferred hardware vendor.
Meanwhile, Nokia CEO (and former Microsoft exec) Stephen Elop sure looks smart for not picking Android — imagine what Nokia’s stock price would have looked like today if Nokia had abandoned Symbian for Google’s platform.
Bloomberg’s Dina Bass tweeted Lees’s statement, which came from Microsoft’s communications department.