No Android for Microsoft: Nokia X Android phones will move to Windows Phone

Nokia's X2 Android smartphone

Above: Nokia's X2 Android smartphone

Image Credit: Nokia
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Coming as a surprise to no one, Microsoft is killing off Nokia’s experimental Android project.

As part of a massive layoff announcement this morning, which will see Microsoft losing 18,000 employees over the next year, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that “select Nokia X product designs” will be turned into Lumia devices running Windows Phone instead of Android.

“This builds on our success in the affordable smartphone space and aligns with our focus on Windows Universal Apps,” Nadella wrote.

The announcement comes only a month after Nokia unveiled the X2, a low-cost Android phone running an interface that’s similar to Windows Phone but that also relies on Microsoft’s cloud services. The X2 was an intriguing idea, but there wasn’t much of a chance that Microsoft would support it, given Windows Phone’s own progress in developing cheap Windows Phone devices.

Nokia was clearly working on the X2 long before Microsoft finalized its acquisition of the company’s handset business in April. Until then, Microsoft was forbidden from stopping Nokia from dabbling in Android.

Today, however, Microsoft has decided to start clearing house in a big way. Around 12,500 jobs from the upcoming round of layoffs will come directly from the Nokia division, a move that comes after Nadella hinted at the Code conference in May that he wasn’t in favor of the Nokia acquisition in the first place.

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