Microsoft's Acquisition of Nokia to Close April 25
Nokia will finalize the sale of its handset business to Microsoft on April 25, the company said today. The deal, first proposed last September, has Microsoft acquiring the Devices & Services business from Nokia, which will retain its network business and HERE Maps business. The transaction has already been approved by regulators in the U.S., Europe, and Asia, and has been approved by the boards of both Microsoft and Nokia. According to Microsoft there are a few changes to the agreement: Microsoft will manage the Nokia.com domain name and social media sites for a year; Nokia will transfer 21 employees from Nokia's Chief Technology Office in China to Microsoft; and Microsoft will no longer acquire Nokia's manufacturing plant in Korea. Once the sale is complete, Microsoft will officially become a manufacturer of smartphones, putting it more directly into competition with Apple and Google.
Facebook to Make Its Instant Articles Compatible with Google, Apple Formats
Facebook wants content to be more readable across the web and took steps this week toward that goal by tweaking the SDK for its Instant Articles. Facebook's Instant Articles give publishers a way to streamline content for consumption on mobile devices, but Instant Articles aren't compatible with the mobile-first styles used by Google and Apple.
Microsoft Makes Branding Change Official
Microsoft today indicated its branding transition from Nokia Lumia to Microsoft Lumia is progressing as planned. Microsoft has slowly been rebranding apps, services, and web sites from Nokia to Microsoft.
Nokia to Idle Indian Manufacturing Plant
Nokia has indicated it will cease production at a facility located in Chennai, India. Nokia still owns and operates the plant despite the fact that it sold its handset division to Microsoft earlier this year.
Microsoft to Drop Nokia Brand from Smartphones
Microsoft indicated that it is prepared to drop the Nokia brand from its line of Windows Phones. Moving forward, the company will use the Microsoft Lumia name to refer to its phone hardware.