Nokia buys Novarra

Nokia says it will buy US company Novarra, which developed the mobile browser Vision, formerly known as nWeb.

Novarra has been selling its mobile browsing platform to all major operators worldwide, such as Vodafone, Sprint Nextel, Turkcell and to handset makers. Amongst others, the browser has been preinstalled on handsets from Sony Ericsson, Nokia, Samsung, Motorola and Research In Motion.

“Connecting the next billion consumers to the Internet will happen primarily on mobile devices,” wrote a PR guy for Niklas Savander, VP of Nokia Services. “And delivering an optimized internet experience on our devices is core to our mission.

Novarra’s Internet services technology delivered on the world’s most widely-used mobile platform, Nokia’s Series 40, will help us achieve this.”

Vision can handle Java and Flash-based websites, as well as AVI and other formats such as MPEG-2/MPEG-4 and MP3, depending on what the handset supports. Nokia says it will offer a new service based on Novarra’s platform later this year.

The acquisition will be closed by the end of this year’s second quarter. Nokia did not say how much it paid for all outstanding shares of the privately held browser maker, nor did it comment on the future of all 100 Novarra employees. The takeover is bound to make the marketplace for mobile browsers a bit tighter.