Nokia lays off 1,800. changes direction

Nokia has begun a major reorganization that will see 1,800 workers laid off, its product range streamlined and its smartphone strategy significantly altered.

Nokia has begun a major reorganization that will see 1,800 workers laid off, its product range streamlined and its smartphone strategy significantly altered.

The company published its quarterly results on Thursday, showing growth in smartphones but a drop-off in sales of Nokia's lower-end S40 device range due to screen and camera supply constraints. New chief executive Stephen Elop said in an earnings call on Thursday that he saw Nokia as a landscape of "unpolished gems" that would only realize their value through the implementation of a "crisply articulated strategy".

That strategy will see the company drastically change course on the implementation of its Symbian and MeeGo operating systems. For those buying new Nokia phones now, it also means that the version of Symbian running on those devices will be updated with a new user experience, rather than the handsets being entirely superseded by an upcoming, more user-friendly generation.

Many of the planned changes will be made on the development side. All development will now be done through the Qt framework, which makes it possible for coders to build apps for both the Symbian and MeeGo platforms at once, along with desktop OSes such as Windows, Mac and Linux. Although Nokia's focus has been on Qt for some time, this move means that developers will no longer be able to write Symbian apps using, for example, Flash Lite, Python, Java ME or Ruby. Qt has built-in support for HTML 5, and Nokia will make a major push to implement that emerging set of web standards in its mobile browser. For more on this story, read Nokia loses 1,800 jobs, revamps Symbian roadmap on ZDNet UK.

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