Microsoft Drops Mobile Efforts In Favor Of AI Technology

Microsoft has dropped its mobile ambitions in favor of pursuing artificial intelligence (AI) technologies, the company's latest filing with the United States Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) reveals. The section of the filing pertaining to the corporate strategic vision of the company states that Microsoft is currently seeking to develop and maintain products and services aimed at the productivity segment and meant to be powered by cloud and AI technologies. In its previous statement on the matter sent to the SEC, Microsoft described its general business ambitions as "mobile-first and cloud-first." While the latter part of its corporate vision still stands, albeit with a major focus on AI, it seems that the Redmond, Washington-based tech giant has now dropped the idea of pursuing mobile solutions as one of its primary revenue streams.

The latest turn of events isn't entirely surprising in light of the fact that Microsoft already gave up on its largest stake in the mobile industry — Nokia — which it sold to HMD Global Oy and Foxconn's FIH Mobile in mid-2016 for $350 million. The purchase was officially approved in late 2016 and Microsoft proceeded to transfer a number of patents to the new Finnish licensee of the Nokia brand earlier this summer, though the company still holds a broad range of Nokia's popular trademarks like PureView, ClearBlack, and PureMotion. Still, its latest SEC filing indicates that the firm isn't planning to utilize those trademarks in the immediate future and may end up selling them to HMD Global or a third party.

It's currently unclear what Microsoft's newly reworded corporate strategy means for the future of its existing mobile software solutions, many of which are currently available on Android. While the company is unlikely to drop support for the Android version of Office, Arrow Launcher, and the recently introduced experimental build of the Windows Dev Center for smartphones and tablets running Google's operating system, the firm may now be less likely to release new mobile apps that aren't specifically aimed at enterprise users and developers. The tech giant's recently professed focus on AI recently also manifested itself in the form of an AI and Research group that it established earlier this year, looking to make a larger foothold in this emerging segment.

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Dominik Bosnjak

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Dominik started at AndroidHeadlines in 2016 and is the Head Editor of the site today. He’s approaching his first full decade in the media industry, with his background being primarily in technology, gaming, and entertainment. These days, his focus is more on the political side of the tech game, as well as data privacy issues, with him looking at both of those through the prism of Android. Contact him at [email protected]