Elop told the Sydney Morning Herald that Nokia was “very worried” about Samsung’s expected monopoly over Android.
He said that the company was anxious that Nokia would be entering Android late and that Samsung was well on the road to becoming the dominant Android vendor at the expense of everybody else.
Symbian was not a starter, Elop claimed, because it “was seen as a much higher risk.” It also ditched it because Windows Phone allowed the company to differentiate from rivals who used Android.
Elop was also not happy with Google’s Android licensing which was becoming restrictive.
For example, Google insisted that its Maps product was installed on every machine, which would have undermined all the cash that Nokia had sunk into its own mapping products.
“If you watch very carefully as to what’s happening with the changes to the open handset alliance agreement and the work Google has done on their contracting, it’s become more and more constricted over time in terms of what you’re allowed to do,” Elop said.
Elop, who was in Australia to launch the budget Lumia 620 smartphone, said that Nokia is looking at how Microsoft’s Surface tablet performed the market before launching its own.
He hopes to bring Windows Phone into “double digit” market share but could not give a time frame in which to reach the target.
Elop said that the fears about Samsung’s dominance turned out to be right. At the time he made the decision Samsung was big, HTC was pretty big, Motorola was pretty big. But Samsung has captured the lion’s share and the others have been squeezed out.