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Nokia giving up on its VR effort

Nokia is scrapping plans for future versions of its Ozo VR camera. Photo: Nokia

In an abrupt about-face, Nokia said Tuesday it will halt work on future versions of its Ozo virtual reality camera and cut up to 30 percent of the staff in its Nokia Technologies unit.

Why it matters: The VR market has been slower than expected to take off, resulting in several casualties. Intel said last month it was cancelling its Project Alloy reference design for VR headsets.

The background: Nokia, which these days is largely focused on network equipment, has maintained a separate unit to license the company's brand and patents, as well as to incubate businesses, like the VR camera. The company said it is pushing forward with digital health, its other big incubation effort.

"Nokia Technologies is at a point where, with the right focus and investments, we can meaningfully grow our footprint in the digital health market, and we must seize that opportunity," said Gregory Lee, the former Samsung executive who serves as president of Nokia Technologies.

The move could result in the reduction of up to 310 of the roughly 1090 jobs in the Nokia Technologies unit.

Go deeper: Nokia CEO Rajeev Suri spoke to Axios last month about his long-term plans to grow Finland's best known tech name.

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