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Microsoft thinks buying Nokia is a bad idea

Microsoft came close to buying Nokia, but decided against it as recently as a month ago.

Microsoft came close to buying Nokia, but decided against it. The two companies, entwined by Windows Phone software, reached "advanced talks" and were still meeting as recently as a month ago.

Microsoft considered snapping up Nokia's handset division as the two companies struggled against Apple and Google in recent years. 

But the Wall Street Journal reports that discussions were cut short before a buy could be made, as Microsoft balked at a price for the struggling Finnish phone manufacturer.

Microsoft and Nokia have a cosy relationship, even without anyone buying anyone else: Nokia is tied to Microsoft's Windows Phone software for its Nokia Lumia smart phones, and Microsoft has sunk millions into Nokia to promote the operating system -- a relationship no doubt eased by the fact Nokia boss Stephen Elop used to work at Microsoft.

Of course, everybody's thought about buying Nokia -- the once-dominant Finnish phone-fabricator makes an enticing target these days, as its fortunes have faded in the smart phone era. Chinese phone-builder Huawei said recently it is "open-minded" to the prospect of buying other companies, including Nokia. In fact, me and my mates thought about it in the pub the other night. We had a whip-round and actually raised enough money, but we ended up just boshing it in the fruity.

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