Nearly eight months after Microsoft originally announced it was buying Nokia, it finally has Nokia. Microsoft today will pay $7.2 billion for Nokia's phone making busines, as well as its portfolio of patents. This gives the Redmond-based tech giant full control of more than 90 percent of all Windows Phones (through Nokia Lumia), as well as Nokia's Asha brand, comprised of Android-based Nokia X handsets. Microsoft will now be able to add "hardware maker" to its sizeable CV, with it set to gain 32,0000 Nokia employees who will be shipping out more than 200 million handsets a year.
The entire deal had been hampered by a series of approvals needed to ratify it. While the necessary US authorities had approved the transfer, their European counterparts took longer - and finally, Microsoft had to count on the Asian authorities to move to close the deal. Continuing restrictions in Asia mean that Microsoft will still have its hands (partially) tied there. For now, the deal is closed, and Nokia can begin its transformation into Microsoft Mobile.