Microsoft paid Nokia billions to ditch Symbian for WP7

Microsoft is apparently paying Nokia billions of dollars to ditch Symbian and MeeGo in favor of its Windows Phone 7 (WP7) operating system.

Nokia CEO Stephen Elop confirmed the lucrative payoff in Barcelona, Spain on Sunday, a day before the annual Mobile World Congress officially kicked off.

“This is something I don’t think was completely explained [in earlier briefings and statements],” he said.

According to Elop, the payments are a clear sign of recognition that Nokia has “substantial value to contribute.”

Elop – a former Microsoft employee – noted that Nokia was also courted by Google, which had unsuccessfully attempted to persuade the company to adopt its flagship Android mobile operating system.

“[Of course], a decision to go with Windows Phone creates a very different [mobile] dynamic.

“It’s an environment where now, Windows Phone is a challenger,” he added.

(Via Associated Press)