Microsoft could drop Nokia brand in future, says Elop

On September 2, it was revealed that Microsoft had acquired Nokia's Devices and Services business, something that is in the final stages of being wrapped up. In an interview with The Telegraph today, Nokia's Stephen Elop spoke about this, saying that it is possible that Microsoft could drop the Nokia brand on smartphones in the future.

Under the acquisition, Microsoft has licensed the use of the Nokia brand name for its Asha cell phones, a line of lower-range offerings, while Nokia retains ownership of the brand. Likewise, Nokia will not be allowed to use the brand name on its own smartphones and tablets in the future. Because of this, Elop was asked if this arrangement means that after the next decade is up, the use of the Nokia name on smartphones could cease to be.

Elop acknowledged that under this arrangement, it is indeed possible that the name Nokia could fizzle away from the smartphone industry, though he also commented that things could change of the next decade, and so nothing is certain. He also side-stepped a question about whether he could become the CEO of Microsoft, stating simply that it was up to the company's board.

Said Elop: "What we have to decide is what the brand will be. Because we have not decided what brand will be dominant for smartphones, that's work that's still ahead. And of course the way we'll go through that process is to assess with consumers what they respond most positively to, what conveys the best message and the best hopes of success. Microsoft as a company, of course, has many brands: Xbox, Office, Surface and a variety of others. We have brands like Lumia. So we'll need to decide what the next step is from a branding perspective."

SOURCE: The Telegraph