Death knell for Windows Phone

  • Less than one percent marketshare
  • More layoffs at Nokia phone unit
Death knell for Windows Phone

THE end is near for Windows Phone and Microsoft's ambitions in the feature phone space. According to the latest smartphone sales report from Gartner, the Windows Phone OS is pretty much dead and while the worldwide smartphone sales have increased by almost 4 percent. Sales of Microsoft Lumia devices actually dropped down to 2.4 million devices, which is about 0.7 market share overall.
The latest numbers are a significant decrease from 2.5 percent market share the OS has held in the same quarter last year. As noted, Microsoft only sold 2.3 million Lumia devices in the last quarter which is a 73 percent drop from 8.6 million devices it sold in the same quarter last year.
According to the report, the drop in sales can be attributed to the lack of new Lumia devices as well as Microsoft's plans to sell its feature phone business to Foxconn for US $350 million.
The Gartner analysis comes hot on the heels of a report that the last remaining vestiges of Nokia at Microsoft are being closed down. "Up to 1,850" people will lose their jobs as the company essentially exits the phone market.
Microsoft bought Nokia's Devices and Services business in 2013 for $7.1 billion. CEO Satya Nadella insists that the company is still working in the phone space, but in a much narrower way, saying "We are focusing our phone efforts where we have differentiation - with enterprises that value security, manageability and our Continuum capability, and consumers who value the same."
In an e-mail to staff, Terry Myerson, executive vice president of the windows and devices group, said that the company will "be more focused" in its phone efforts but insisted that "we're scaling back, but we're not out!" He says that the company will "develop great new devices," a statement that will continue to fuel speculation about a Windows-powered smartphone developed by the Surface team. 
Related Stories:
ECS to distribute Microsoft Lumia phones in Malaysia
Microsoft launches Lumia 950 and 950 XL in Malaysia, special Digi deal
Nokia rises from the ashes
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