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Nokia Android phone coming before Microsoft deal closes, report says

Nokia Android phone coming before Microsoft deal closes, report says
Nokia reportedly plans to unveil a smartphone that runs on Google's Android operating system later this month. Above, an employee demonstrates the functions of a Nokia Lumia 1520 smartphone. (Henrik Kettunen / Bloomberg)

Nokia will reportedly unveil a smartphone running Google's Android operating system later this month, before its acquisition by Microsoft closes.

The Finnish phone maker, which agreed to sell its hardware business to Microsoft for $7.4 billion last September, will announce a low-cost Android smartphone at the Mobile World Congress conference in Spain later this month, according to the Wall Street Journal.

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Citing unnamed sources, the Journal said that the Nokia device wil run a version of Android that works similarly to the one used by Amazon.com in its tablets. Although the operating system will be Android, the software will not include the Google Play store or many Google services.

Instead, the device will include services created by Microsoft and Nokia as well as an app store by Nokia.

Nokia's decision to create an Android device comes from its goal to succeed in emerging markets, where low-cost phones are in demand. Currently, issues with the Windows Phone operating system limit how cheaply phone makers can make, and sell, their devices.

The Journal said it was unclear if the Nokia Android device would be a one-time offering or if the phone maker would develop multiple devices that use the software created by one of Microsoft's biggest rivals.

Neither Microsoft nor Nokia could be reached for comment.

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