Earlier this year, Nokia made a strategic decision to embrace Windows Phone 7 for all future smartphone models. According to one report this week, Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, a former Microsoft executive, confirmed that the company will release its first Microsoft-based phones in some markets before year's end.
There's a lot riding on this decision for both companies, and Ballmer's remarks to analysts underlined that.
"Nokia will launch their first phone [with Windows Phone 7]," he said. "That's really important. Some people say 'is it really, why, what?' With Nokia we have a dedicated hardware partner who is all in on Windows Phone. They're working with us in exactly the way we described, to try to get into new markets, find new price points, take a look at new hardware design. They're all in on Windows. They're not doing something with Android, or blah, blah, blah, blah, blah. Boom, our innovation interests are completely aligned."
"[B]ut there's just more work for us to do as we move forward to establish Windows Phone in the market," he acknowledged.
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