Nokia, Microsoft to work together on smart phone

Technology titans Nokia and Microsoft are joining forces to make smart phones in a push to challenge rivals like Apple and Google, hoping to revive their own fortunes in a market they have struggled to keep up with.

Nokia Corp., the world’s largest cell phone maker, said Friday it will use Microsoft Corp.’s Windows Phone software as the main platform for its smart phones in an effort to recover lost share from Apple’s iPhone and Android, Google’s software for phones and tablets.

The move marks a major strategy shift for Nokia, which has previously equipped devices with its own open-share software.

Analysts said the deal was a bigger win for Microsoft than Nokia, whose CEO Stephen Elop in a leaked memo this week compared his company to a burning oil platform with “more than one explosion fueling a blazing fire around us.”

Nokia’s share price plummeted 14 percent to $9.52 in late trading in Helsinki.

 

Internet radio service prepares for IPO this year

Popular Internet radio service Pandora is tuning up for an IPO later this year. In documents filed Friday, Pandora indicated it would raise $100 million with an initial public offering of stock.

That figure will likely change as bankers gauge demand to invest in a company that has helped change the way people listen to music.

The San Francisco company’s decision to go public is the latest sign that Internet companies sense the time is ripe to mine the markets for money amid growing excitement about digital media and online networking.

Demand Media Inc., an online service that hires freelancers to write stories about frequently searched topics, made a big splash with its IPO last month, and professional networking service LinkedIn Corp. filed its IPO papers last week.

Pandora Media Inc. started in 2000 as a music recommendation service called Savage Beast Technologies. It changed its name in 2005 when it launched an Internet radio service that allows people to stream music over the Web — enabling users to tailor playlists suited to their tastes.

 

Three banks shut down, bringing year’s total to 17

Regulators on Friday shut down small banks in Florida, Michigan and Wisconsin, lifting to 17 the number of bank failures this year.

The weak economy and bad debt brought down 157 banks nationwide in 2010.

The Federal Deposit Insurance Corp. seized Sunshine State Community Bank of Port Orange, Fla., Peoples State Bank in Hamtramck, Mich., and Badger State Bank of Cassville, Wis.

The failure of Sunshine State Community Bank is expected to cost the deposit insurance fund $30 million; that of Peoples State Bank is expected to cost $87.4 million; that of Badger State Bank, $17.5 million.