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Stephen Elop: Google backing away from Android’s open ecosystem

If Nokia CEO Stephen Elop raised hope a few weeks ago that we might someday see a Nokia phone powered by Android, he has thrown water (or perhaps peed) on those flames with his most recent statements. While presenting Nokia”s Q4 2012 earnings, he offered a condemnation of Android, expressing concern that Google is attempting to close its open ecosystem.

Elop said that one problem with Android, fragmentation, is “offset by Google’s efforts to turn an open ecosystem into that’s quite a bit more closed.” He notes that this is a recent trend, which may refer to anything from Google dropping Exchange ActiveSync support, effectively gimping Gmail support on Windows Phone devices. Google has also failed to provide their suite of mobile apps for the platform powering Nokia’s smartphones.

But his statements could also refer to an expanded Nexus program, the buyout of Motorola, and rumored plans of a flagship Android handset taking advantage of that acquisition. The concern there is that Google will reposition itself as not only a software provider, but a device manufacturer directly competing with the likes of Samsung and other Android partners.

Needless to say, whether you agree with Mr. Elop’s opinion or not, it doesn’t sound like he has any immediate plans to support the work that Google is doing. That Nokia Android might still be the pipe dream of smartphone users everywhere.

[via The Verge]