Microsoft closes Nokia deal, pays more than expected

Microsoft is now officially the proud owner of Nokia's handset division, closing the deal today.

Richard Trenholm Former Movie and TV Senior Editor
Richard Trenholm was CNET's film and TV editor, covering the big screen, small screen and streaming. A member of the Film Critic's Circle, he's covered technology and culture from London's tech scene to Europe's refugee camps to the Sundance film festival.
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Microsoft finally owns Nokia's handset division CNET

Microsoft finally owns Nokia's handset division.

The two companies announced today that they have completed the deal, Nokia offloading the hardware department to Microsoft for slightly more than the original announced price of €5.44 billion -- or $7.2 billion at the time.

Although the final price tag hasn't been revealed, Nokia has promised more details in its financial results when they're made public Wednesday.

Microsoft has bought the devices and services part of Nokia's business, which will now to be known as Microsoft Mobile Oy (Oy being a Finnish word for a company, like Ltd. or Inc.).

Announcing the closure of the deal, Microsoft told CNET today that this is "the first step in a journey bringing these two organizations together as one team."

Microsoft also noted that "any further decisions regarding specific branding will be made further down the road as part of the future integration," referring to the rumours and uncertainty about whether the Nokia and Lumia names will continue to appear on phones.

Meanwhile, Nokia will continue to be a networking company and will also continue to license Here maps. Those left behind will still have close ties to Microsoft even after the deal is done: Nokia is licensing patents to Microsoft, for example, and will build mobile devices for the American company.

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The deal was originally announced back in September. The two companies were already closely linked as Nokia had adopted Microsoft's Windows Phone software for its smartphones. Nokia boss Stephen Elop was a former Microsoft employee, and he's back in the fold as one of the executives transferring from Nokia to Microsoft.

Not every current employee is so fortunate: Nokia has confirmed it's closing a manufacturing plant in Masan, South Korea, which employs 200 people. The future of a plant in Chennai, India, is yet to be decided and may depend on the outcome of a row with the Indian government over tax.