Google boss Eric Schmidt has finally weighed in on Nokia’s surprise decision to snub its Android operating system for Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7.
Speaking at the Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona, Schmidt revealed that the search giant had held “confidential negotiations with Nokia that were extensive”, but in the end Espoo still chose to side with Microsoft.
He said: “We would have loved that they had chosen Android. They chose the other guys, that other competitor, Microsoft. I think we are pretty straightforward.”
However, Schmidt added that the door is always open for Nokia to join Android in the future.
“We would like them to adopt Android at some point in the future and that offer remains open. We think Android was a good choice for Nokia. We are sorry they made a different choice.”
Nokia, which commands the largest pie of the global mobile market, has seen its share shrunk by almost half since the arrival of Android, so it’s not surprising Espoo is unwilling to hand over the remaining half to Google so readily. The alliance with Microsoft is seen as a necessary compromise that would still allow the smartphone giant to dominate hardware sales, while dipping its toe into waters of competitors’ “eco-systems”.
Microsoft on the other hand, is clearly thrilled to have Nokia on board. The software maker is trying to find its own foothold in the booming smartphone market with its reboot of the now-defunct Windows Mobile platform.