Handset maker Nokia -- which earlier this year revealed plans to team up with Microsoft on smartphone operating systems -- has announced that Michael Halbherr has been appointed executive vice president to spearhead the company s revised mission in mobile and location-based services.
Effective July 1, Halbherr will become a member of the Nokia Leadership Team, reporting to CEO Stephen Elop. Halbherr will lead a new Location & Commerce business, which will be formed by integrating the Navteq business with Nokia's social-location services operations.
The Location & Commerce business will develop a new class of integrated social-location products and services for consumers, as well as platform services and local commerce services for device manufacturers, application developers, Internet services providers, merchants and advertisers.
While continuing to serve Navteq's existing customers, the Location & Commerce business will provide opportunities through the integration of Nokia community data. In addition to a portfolio of products and services for the wider Internet ecosystem, the Location & Commerce business will also create integrated social-location offerings in support of Nokia's strategic goal in smartphones, including Nokia products with Windows Phones, as well as support for bringing the Internet to the next billion-dollar level.
"Focusing on location and commerce is a natural next step in Nokia's Services journey. We will provide next-generation social-location applications and commerce to differentiate Nokia. We also aim to extend our content and services offerings to all consumers by making them available to partners and customers on a wide variety of devices and operating systems," Elop said. "Michael is a widely recognized authority in the fields of mobility and social-location services, and I am delighted to appoint him to lead an area of our business that will be crucial in Nokia's transformation strategy."