Nokia-branded Android devices are another step closer to reality.
HMD Global, a new Finnish company that in May signed an exclusive licensing agreement for the Nokia brand, announced on Monday that it’s hired Pekka Rantala as its chief marketing officer.
Rantala previously spent a year as CEO of “Angry Birds” maker Rovio — with mixed results — but will now be charged with selling the public on phones and tablets from a brand that has steadily fallen from relevance over the last decade.
For the unfamiliar, Nokia might be the most famous casualty of iOS and Android’s rise to control of the smartphone market. The Finnish firm had massive success with feature phones in the 90s and early 2000s, but hitched its wagon to Microsoft’s Windows Phone OS as Android phones and the iPhone became more ubiquitous.
Microsoft bought the company’s mobile and devices division in 2014, but has since distanced itself from the purchase as its mobile platform struggled to gain traction.
Nokia itself still exists outside of the consumer phone space, but largely focuses on its telecommunications network equipment business. It most recently acquired wearable device manufacturer Withings this past May.
HMD, headed by former Nokia and Microsoft exec Arto Nummela, now has control of the Nokia name on mobile for the next 10 years. It will use a manufacturing partnership with Foxconn subsidiary FIH Mobile to produce various Android-powered Nokia smartphones and tablets, and says it plans on investing $500 million in marketing those devices.
No availability details have been announced for the devices just yet. Still, years after one helped push the other out of the mobile market, it looks like Android and Nokia will come together after all.
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