An intriguing report in the Wall Street Journal has claimed that top brass at Nokia and Microsoft recently spoke of making a joint bid to buy RIM.

The two companies, who seem to be growing ever closer, looked at capitalising on RIM's recent woes according to "people familiar with the matter."

The WSJ says they're not aware of the current status of the Microsoft/Nokia talks or whether RIM has been approached.

The Canadian smartphone maker has endured a disastrous 2011, with the BlackBerry PlayBook failing to live up to commercial expectations and a BlackBerry internet service outage in October affecting its reputation.

Microsoft and Nokia may feel that RIM is ripe for the picking.

Samsung and HTC approached

Furthermore, the WSJ report suggests that RIM has even approached rival hardware manufacturers with a view to licensing out the new BlackBerry 10 (formerly BBX) operating system.

The publication says the Canadians have "approached other smartphone makers, including Samsung and HTC, about licensing RIM's new operating system."

Both of these eventualities would be somewhat shocking as RIM looks to desperately fight its way out of the slump before profits dwindle into the red.

Nokia and Microsoft have grown closer thanks to its Windows Phone accord, with plenty of talk surrounding Microsoft potentially swallowing the Finnish manufacturer.

If RIM decided to license out its new BB10 OS it would surely see the company throwing in the towel as a hardware maker to focus on software.

Further reports on Tuesday night suggested that Amazon considered buying RIM this summer. Is the former smartphone kingpin about to get chewed up and spat out?

Via: WSJ, Reuters