After countless leaks, rumors and bits of speculation, it sounds like the Android-powered Nokia Normandy may actually make it to market.
A new report from The Wall Street Journal claims that Nokia will debut a new smartphone running Android at Mobile World Congress later this month. The publication's sources say that the handset is aimed at emerging markets and that it won't promote the Google Play Store. Instead, Nokia will load the device up with apps from itself and Microsoft, such Here maps and Nokia MixRadio. Also expected to be included is a special Nokia app store with Android apps inside.
The Nokia Normandy has been the subject of quite a few leaks in recent months, including renders of the device, photos of it in the wild and some images of the custom version of Android that it's expected to run. However, to date it's been unclear whether or not the Normandy would ever see the fluorescent light of a retail store because of Microsoft's acquisition of Nokia's Devices & Services division.
So why is the Android-powered Normandy coming to market, even though Microsoft has its own mobile OS in Windows Phone? Today's report claims that Microsoft needs to boost its hardware sales in order to costs of its manufacturing efforts as well as the price of competing against the likes of Apple and Samsung. It's also said that Windows Phone's hardware requirements prevent it from being loaded onto the Normandy.