U.S. Department of Justice approved the deal; and now, the European Commission has also applied its stamp of approval to Microsoft's plans. The Commission said about the acquisition that "the overlap of the two companies' activities in this area is minimal and several strong rivals, such as Samsung and Apple will continue to compete with the merged entity." It went on to say that it didn't expect Microsoft to restrict access to Windows Phone or any Microsoft apps for 3rd party hardware makers.Just a few days ago, the
Presumably, just like the Google/Motorola deal, the next step is approval in China, and then the pathway will be clear for the purchase to be finalized. Microsoft and Nokia expect to be able to close the deal in early 2014.