Microsoft drops Nokia name from smartphones

Microsoft drops Nokia name from smartphones

WASHINGTON - Microsoft said Friday it was dropping the Nokia name from its Lumia smartphones, rebranding following the acquisition earlier this year of the Finnish group's handset division.

The rebranding is "a natural progression as all devices that once came from Nokia now come from Microsoft," said Tuula Rytila, senior vice president of marketing for phones at Microsoft.

"Lumia is now part of a compelling family of Microsoft products like Xbox, Windows and Surface along with a range of services such as Skype, Office and Bing."

In an interview on the Nokia conversations blog, Rytila said there was no specific timetable announced but that "we are looking forward to unveiling a Microsoft Lumia device soon."

Microsoft will keep the Nokia for entry-level phones, such as the Nokia 130, under a license agreement between the companies.

The acquisition for more than $7.5 billion was completed in April.

Nokia was the world leader in mobile phones until it was challenged by Apple's iPhone in 2007 and later Samsung.

Microsoft has struggled to gain market shares for its Windows Phone devices. According to the research firm Strategy Analytics, Windows had just 2.5 per cent of the smartphone market in the second quarter, mainly from Nokia and a small number of other manufacturers.

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