Nokia has extended its life support for the ailing Symbian operating system until 2016, after finalising a support and development agreement with management consultancy Accenture.
The deal provides Symbian users with some assurance that the platform will be supported for the next five years, but also reaffirms the message that Nokia is moving wholeheartedly to Windows.
As part of the agreement, 2,800 Nokia staff in Finland, the UK, India and China are expected to transfer to Accenture by mid-October 2011.
Those staff will be offered additional training to extend their skills to the Windows Phone platform.
“As we move our primary smartphone platform to Windows Phone, we will look to explore potential opportunities to tap this talent pool as they develop and expand their knowledge and capabilities beyond Symbian,” said Jo Harlow of Nokia’s Smart Devices unit.
There are 200 million Symbian users globally, but the platform has lost market share in recent times, as Google’s Android mobile operating system and Apple’s iOS have dominated sales.