Microsoft Rumored To Kill Lumia Windows 10 Mobile Smartphone Family By Year's End
The writing has been on the wall for quite some time — Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia’s Devices and Services Division has been a complete disaster and a money pit. Microsoft bought the division for $7.9 billion in spring 2014, and a year later, the company had to take an impairment charge of $7.6 billion for the purchase.
Since that time, the Redmond, Washington-based company has laid off thousands of employees that it brought over from Nokia along with additional Microsoft employees that were already working on smartphone hardware and software. To make matters worse, smartphone sales have plummeted despite Microsoft’s steady supply of promotional offers on Windows 10 Mobile smartphones.
Now according to inside sources for WinBeta, it appears that Lumia smartphone production might be finally winding down. In fact, Microsoft reportedly will end production of Lumia smartphones this December, and we’re sure to see another round of fire sales to clear out the existing inventory.
If you’ve been paying close attention to the latest happenings in Lumia land, you’d remember that Microsoft recently permanently trimmed the prices of the flagship Lumia 950 and 950 XL to $399 and $499 respectively, representing price cuts of $150 each. To sweeten the deal, Microsoft is once again tossing in a free Display Dock with purchase to entice customers into the Windows 10 Mobile camp.
Another sign that Lumias are headed for that big smartphone graveyard in the sky comes from recent actions by Microsoft regarding positioning of the devices. “Microsoft Stores have been moving their Windows phone collections into smaller areas and out of the way from customers,” writes WinBeta. “For its website, the company removed the link to its Lumia range from its homepage in the US, while subsequently changing it on its other regional sites from Lumia to Windows phones.”
With Lumia smartphones reportedly being shown the door, what would take its place? All signs point to Microsoft releasing a family of Surface-branded smartphones to carry the Windows 10 Mobile torch. However, the question remains if there are enough customers out there willing to take the plunge with Windows 10 Mobile versus more firmly entrenched platforms like Android and iOS?
At last count, Android was sitting at 86.2 percent global market share, with iOS trailing far behind at 12.9 percent. Microsoft’s Windows Phone/Windows 10 Mobile platform was represented with just a 0.6 percent share.