Nokia has long been rumored to be developing an Android smartphone, and according to a new report that development is still going on despite Microsoft's impending acquisition of the Finnish company's smartphone business.
An image of a Nokia phone codenamed "Normandy" was published by @evleaks last month, and now The Verge reports Normandy is Nokia's in-development Android smartphone. The phone wouldn't actually run the standard version of Android, however; according to The Verge, Normandy would run a forked version of Android similar to what Amazon does with its Kindle Fire line.
A real Asha. Or Lumia? The Nokia Normandy. pic.twitter.com/Q4jpPNte1l— @evleaks (@evleaks) November 25, 2013
Normandy is scheduled for release next year, with development proceeding "full steam ahead," according to the report's unnamed "insider" source.
Last week, both the European Commission and U.S. regulators approved Microsoft's agreement to buy Nokia's devices and services unit, the last major hurdles for the acquisition. Microsoft expects the deal early next year, meaning the chance of Normandy seeing release is extremely slim. Technically there would be no hurdles if Microsoft wanted to release the device, given Android's open source nature, though it almost certainly wouldn't release a device running an operating system that competes with its own Windows Phone OS.
Nokia reportedly tested Android on its Lumia smartphones prior to the Microsoft deal, though it was assumed the development was halted when the two sides agreed to the acquisition. Stephen Elop, Nokia's former CEO and current executive vice president, was adamant that Nokia was happy with its choice to exclusively make Windows Phone smartphones just before reports surfaced of the company's Android phone.
Source: The Verge