Short term, Nokia's coffers go ka-ching. Nokia, which rules the near-commodity-level handset market worldwide, can fire most of its R&D force: Symbian developers get released by the truckload and nobody expects much (if any) MeeGo hiring. Nokia's R&D expenses will approach zero. Longer term, Nokia has a fighting chance to join the smartphone parade -- if Windows Phone succeeds.
Short term, Microsoft loses some cash. (The company definitely has a few greenbacks lying around, but nobody knows how much.) Longer term, Microsoft has for all intents and purposes bought itself a manufacturing facility and a brand. It remains to be seen if the company can do anything with it, and the current indications are not positive.
If Windows Phone goes down the tubes, Microsoft loses a few hundred million but Nokia loses the farm.
If Windows Phone succeeds, Microsoft makes a mint and Nokians keep their jobs -- some of them, anyway.
This story, "Who wins in the Microsoft-Nokia $1 billion deal?," was originally published at InfoWorld.com. Get the first word on what the important tech news really means with the InfoWorld Tech Watch blog. For the latest developments in business technology news, follow InfoWorld.com on Twitter.