Windows smartphone manufacturer Microsoft is set to ink a deal worth $350 million dollars with FIH mobile Ltd – a Foxconn subsidiary to sell its feature phone division. After a lengthy negotiation process both the companies reached this conclusion. As a part of the agreement, FIH Mobile Ltd. will also acquire Microsoft’s Manufacturing facility in Vietnam. Approx. 4,500 employees of Feature phone division will also be transferred to or have the opportunity to join new set-up.
Couple of years back, Microsoft acquired Nokia mobile and services division on 25 April 2014. Since then, it has gradually phased out smartphone under Nokia brand and limited Nokia branding to feature phones only. Lumia sub-brand also moved out of Nokia’s umbrella and now succeeds a Microsoft label.
Against its own expectation, Microsoft failed to revive Nokia mobiles to its golden glory days. In last couple of years, Microsoft discontinued its feature phones like Asha and X Series. Microsoft has shifted focus towards providing its services on all platforms including Android and iOS.
Microsoft in a press statement announced the sale of its feature phone division to Foxconn. Microsoft also said it will continue developing Windows 10 Mobile and support Lumia phones, as well as phones from other OEM partners like Acer, Alcatel, HP, Trinity, and Vaio.
There are rumors circulating in the industry suggesting that Micorsoft may slow poison Lumia sub-brand and focus on a new Surface phone strategy.