Nokia buys assets of social startup Cellity

The German company will shut down its service, and its team will add to Nokia's social skills

Nokia has agreed to acquire certain assets of Cellity, a 14-person German startup with a mobile social-networking service that will now be shut down at the end of September.

Cellity's service, which has only been available in beta testing, gives users a place to store all their contacts and then access them on their mobile phones or the Web. The service can also display contacts' latest updates to social-networking sites such as Twitter, according to the company's Web site.

But Nokia said it won't operate the Cellity service after the acquisition, which it expects to complete in the third quarter. Instead, it is acquiring the Cellity team in order to strengthen its social-networking capabilities and will discontinue the company's current offering. In an entry on Cellity's corporate blog, the company said its service will not be available after Sept. 30.

Nokia, the world's largest cell-phone maker, recently has been bolstering its services and software offerings to differentiate its devices and compete with Apple's iPhone. Its Ovi Share service lets Nokia users share content on their phones and the Web, and Nokia has also introduced an Ovi Store that sells mobile applications.

The company said it hopes to accelerate its services development through the acquisition. The Cellity team will become part of Nokia's services unit. The companies did not disclose terms of the deal.

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