With Nokia, Microsoft finally ready to become a hardware company (roundup)

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Not content with its close partnership with Nokia, Microsoft announced late Monday that it has agreed to purchase the Devices and Services division of Nokia for a little over $7 billion. If the deal closes as expected in the first quarter of next year, Microsoft will own one of the world’s most storied smartphone operations, albeit one that has fallen quite a bit over the last ten years as the smartphone market has evolved.

The deal would create a combined organization that Microsoft hopes will rival Apple and Google, the smartphone leaders of the world, and accelerate Microsoft’s transition from a software giant to a hardware maker in its own right.

Here’s our coverage so far:

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