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A leading analyst firm states that Microsoft is in the mix to buy the once-famous Nokia company. CSS Insight predicts that in 2021, Nokia will be bought by a prominent U.S.-based tech company next year. They named both Microsoft and Intel as likely to buy Nokia.

Microsoft and Nokia have a history tracing back to 2013 when the software giant bought the Nokia smartphone division for $7 billion. The deal was not so good as their attempts to provide the smartphone market with an alternative to Android phones and Apple iPhones failed.

The Windows Phone never became a real success, and Nokia eventually was written off in 2015, leading to thousands of lost jobs.

Nokia’s comeback

Nokia has always continued its business as a network company, building telecom networks. This is where Nokia’s newest success is and where the U.S. companies are after. It also made a comeback into the phone business by licensing its brand to HMD Global.

After the recent ban of Chinese companies by the U.S. government, Nokia seems to be poised on the edge of a market that is now ripe for new players. Huawei has a better business case for most telecom providers in terms of costs and performance, but Huawei is banned in many countries because of the U.S. pressure.

Last week, Nokia was able to land a deal to become the largest equipment supplier for the United Kingdom’s biggest telecom company, BT.

Microsoft is interested in telecom and 5G

The networking deal attracted the attention of U.S. companies, according to the analyst firm making these predictions. Kester Mann, the director of consumer and connectivity at CSS Insights, says that their analysis concludes Nokia might be slightly vulnerable to acquisition.

Microsoft has shown some real interest in telecoms, making two acquisitions this year. One was Metaswitch, and the other was Affirmed Networks. Their moves are all about getting 5G proficiency and expertise to leverage their stake in the telco space.

Microsoft would consider a company like Nokia to pad their portfolio in this space.

Techzine wrote a blog many months ago about a possible acquisition of Nokia by a U.S. company; Troubled times at Nokia, is the company falling into American hands?