Nokia’s Devices and Services purhase by Microsoft approved by EU Commision

| December 5, 2013 | 61 Replies



Following approval by the US Department of Justice, the EU Commision also approved the Nokia D&S sale to Microsoft yesterday.

From the Press Release:

1) Microsoft is unlikely to restrict the supply of its Windows OSs for smart mobile devices to third party device manufacturers after the transaction. Indeed, Microsoft’s share in the mobile OS market is limited. Moreover, to better compete with the leading Android and Apple OS platforms, Microsoft likely needs to continue relying on third party device suppliers to broaden consumer adoption and attract mobile app developers.

2) Microsoft is unlikely to restrict the supply of its mobile apps, such as its Office suite apps and its communication app Skype, to competing providers of smart mobile devices. Since Office apps are currently not available on tablets running third party OSs, a potential supply restriction would be limited to other tablet suppliers using Microsoft’s Windows OSs. However, this strategy would hamper Microsoft’s interest to attract more app developers and ultimately users to its OSs for smart mobile devices. For smartphones, the share of Office apps is minimal and there are many popular competing apps. Similarly, with regard to Skype, other popular apps continue to be available. Moreover, given the low market share of Windows in mobile OSs, limiting interoperability with third-party mobile OSs would ultimately weaken Skype’s competitive offering.

3) Microsoft would not have the ability to restrict the interoperability of competing smart mobile devices with Exchange Server, Microsoft’s enterprise mail server software, because of the contractual terms of their current licenses to Microsoft patents covering the communication protocol that manages synchronisation of email, calendar and contacts between smart mobile devices and Microsoft Exchange. Moreover, given the limited portion of the market which could be foreclosed and the merged entity’s very small market position in the smart mobile device market, such a conduct would in any event not produce anti-competitive effects.

Post “merger”, Nokia will be closely monitored for anti-trust regarding licensing practices under EU antitrust rules which  “prohibits the abuse of a dominant market position” (Dominant?).

A Microsoft spokesperson said:

We look forward to the date when our partners at Nokia will become members of the Microsoft family, and are pleased that the European Commission has cleared the deal without conditions,

Sources: European Commission

Via: ZDNet Via:  WPC


Category: Nokia

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