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Nokia’s Stephen Elop (File photo)

Microsoft’s biggest mobile partner, Nokia, is expected to unveil its lineup of Windows Phone 8 devices coming up shortly this morning, in a news conference from New York City available for live streaming here. It’s the latest step by Microsoft and Nokia in their effort to compete more effectively with Android and iPhone, and turn around their smartphone businesses.

In advance of the news, Nokia CEO (and former Microsoft exec) Stephen Elop spoke with the Wall Street Journal about the smartphone market in this video interview published overnight.

“There’s this overall struggle going on where clearly Apple and the Android ecosystem are very strong, and we have to establish this as the third viable ecosystem,” he said. “Now it is the case that as we go into this period of time, we also know that Microsoft is introducing Windows 8 for PCs and tablets, which shares that common user experience across phones, PCs, tablets, gaming platforms and so forth. The amount of visibility therefore that these efforts will have, we believe will be greatly enhanced.”

Compared with other Windows Phone makers, Elop promised that there will be some “distinct Nokia capabilities” in its new devices.

The live stream starts at 7 a.m. Pacific time.

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