Microsoft Nokia Deal Approved Department Justice
Happier times: Former Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer embraces former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop when the Windows maker announced it was buying the Finnish handset maker.Reuters

In September 2013 Microsoft agreed to buy Nokia's mobile phone business for $7.2m (£4.7m).

Less than two years later the company has announced that it will write off $7.6m against the purchase while laying off a further 7,800 staff.

Microsoft's latest round of restructuring was well signposted in recent days, but that will come as little solace to those losing their jobs, most of whom are involved in the Windows Phone hardware side of the business - which means for the most part they are ex-Nokia employees.

The most resent jobs cull comes a year after the company shed 18,000 employees, 12,500 of which were former Nokia employees.

The latest restructuring efforts by CEO Satya Nadella will cost the company in the region of $750m - $850m and will come into effect before the end of 2015 with all changes to be finalised before 30 June, 2016.

Focused smartphone strategy?

Nadella said:

We are moving from a strategy to grow a standalone phone business to a strategy to grow and create a vibrant Windows ecosystem including our first-party device family. In the near-term, we'll run a more effective and focused phone portfolio while retaining capability for long-term reinvention in mobility.

That more focused phone portfolio will feature smartphones related to business, value phone buyers and big flagship devices Nadella said in an email to staff explaining the cuts.

Last month Microsoft announced that it would be merging the Windows and devices divisions into a single entity, a move which saw the departure of former Nokia CEO Stephen Elop from the company.

The big question on everyone's lips now is whether this move signals the beginning of the end of Microsoft as a smartphone manufacturer. While Windows Phone has had some success, it has failed to significantly move the dial against Android and iOS in the global smartphone market, though Microsoft will launch Windows 10 Mobile later this year as part of its bigger Windows 10 launch beginning on 29 July.

Microsoft has refused to comment on whether or not it will outsource the manufacturing of the Lumia range of Windows Phones, a range it is expected to augment in the coming months with a flagship device that is expected to launch at the same time as Windows 10 Mobile.