Microsoft to Lay Nokia X Series of Phones to Rest Besides Axing 18,000 Jobs

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Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella Gestures As He Speaks At The Company's  "Build" Conference.
Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella gestures as he speaks at the company's "build" conference in San Francisco in this file photo taken April 2, 2014. Microsoft Corp's new Chief Executive Satya Nadella likes to boast that Bing is growing and powers 30 percent of the Internet search market, making it a worthy competitor to Google Inc. REUTERS/Robert Galbraith

Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella informed company employees last week that management will have to take some tough decisions with long-term goals in mind. Thereby, Microsoft would lay off 18,000 employees within 2015. If this news is not bad enough, the company will also be putting its Nokia X series of phones to rest.

Out of the planned workforce reduction, recently acquired "Nokia Devices and Services" account for approximately 12,500 jobs. This includes both IT professional workforce and factory workers. The first set of reduction targets a total of 13,000 jobs and the notification would be sent out to those employees within the next six months, according to Microsoft's official Web site.

Furthermore, Microsoft executive Stephen Elop announced that the Nokia X project, which produced Microsoft's Android smartphones will be discontinued shortly. In addition, the designs and devices produced thus far on the Nokia X project will be moved to Windows Phone project instead.

Even though Microsoft is stopping the production of Android based Nokia X devices, the support and sales for the currently available Nokia X devices will remain intact, at least for the foreseeable future.

Nokia X project consists of Nokia X, Nokia X+, Nokia XL and Nokia X2 among others. It is worth nothing that the recent addition to Nokia X series of phones is the dual-sim Nokia X2 handset. This entry-level handset comes for $135 and is yet to make land fall in many regions across the globe.

However, Microsoft has not confirmed if Nokia X2 will be axed before it takes off. Going by Elop's announcement, the Nokia X2 is technically an existing device therefore Microsoft would continue the support and sales of this product. Nevertheless, the interest in this smartphone will be reduced tremendously owing to the fact that Microsoft has announced that they are discontinuing the device, says GSMarena.

Elop also mentioned that, instead of the budget-friendly Nokia X series of phones, Microsoft is planning to make additional entry-level and low-range Lumia devices. As mentioned earlier, this will be accomplished by moving Nokia X designs, devices and services to Windows Phone-based phones.

Also, Microsoft CEO quoted the need for work simplification and strategic alignment with the Nokia Devices and Services integration as the two reasons that forced the company management to cut down a big chunk of jobs.

Is Satya Nadella right in axing 18,000 jobs? Also, what do you think will be the status of Nokia X2? Feel free to leave a comment.

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