Nokia (NOK) CEO Stephen Elop might have allied his company with Microsoft (MSFT) to deliver some of the best Windows Phone devices, but he also believes that a Surface-branded smartphone would give the mobile operating system a big boost. Per The Verge, Elop said in Nokia’s latest investor call this week that a Microsoft-built smartphone would certainly be “a stimulant to the ecosystem.” And although HTC (2498) and Samsung (005930) are its competitors, Elop said he welcomes any company that “helps spur the ecosystem on.” Earlier this month, BGR exclusively reported that Microsoft has indeed created a Surface smartphone that could launch in the coming months.
As we’ve said before, Microsoft is undergoing a massive transformation. As it inches closer towards its launch of Windows Phone 8, Windows 8 and the Surface tablet, it’s looking to become a company that offers devices that integrate seamlessly with its software.
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer recently said, “There will be times when we build specific devices for specific purposes.” If Windows Phone 8 doesn’t take off, it might be time for Microsoft to step in and lead the charge, and maybe make a phone strong enough to skateboard on, as it has done with its Surface tablet.