Microsoft isn’t a software company, its a hardware and services company too. Microsoft’s Steve Ballmer has made this abundantly clear in recent times not only by saying as much, but also by their actions with the release of the Microsoft Surface and the continued success of the Microsoft Xbox line.
While Onuora has been saying for a long time now that Microsoft will get in the smartphone game, Microsoft still has yet to confirm such a move. That being said, the Wall Street Journal now reports that suppliers in Asia have confirmed that Microsoft is in fact testing a phone— though not surprisingly these folks are wishing to stay anonymous.
So what is Microsoft developing? While the details are scarce we do know the phone will have a screen size between 4 and 5-inches, nothing particularly revolutionary or new in that fact.
Again, even the anonymous sources talking about the so-called Surface phone aren’t clear whether or not this is just a test or if Microsoft is truly serious about mass producing a smartphone. I wouldn’t be surprised if Microsoft is just testing a few different designs for IF/when they launch the Surface phone in the future… that doesn’t mean what they are developing now will turn into the final product.
The Surface has attracted massive lines and has been praised heavily for pushing Windows tablet design standards to a whole new level. It has also somewhat come under attack by Microsoft’s partners for potentially eating up marketshare that originally went to companies like HP, Dell, Acer and Samsung.
We’ve already discussed the reasons why Microsoft went into the hardware game with the Surface in the past. One of the reasons in my opinion is that none of their partners had yet shown anything that was truly “out of the box” when it came to design thought.
After the announcement of the Surface, more and more vendors started making cool and unique looking tablets and hybrids. It forced Windows partners to step up their game.
That being said, Nokia’s game is already pretty stepped up. The Lumia 920 and 820 lines are both quite attractive— though their slightly oversized design approach won’t appeal to everyone. Even HTC seems to be putting out hardware that is sexy and of high-build quality.
The only partner that hasn’t thought outside the box with phones much would be Samsung. I like the new ATIV smartphone but let’s be honest, it doesn’t look much different than what you’d get with any of their Android smartphone offerings.
Of course that could be a good think for an Android/Samsung fan thinking about making the switch to Windows Phone.
If Nokia continues to fall behind and struggle, the Surface phone will come, that much you can bet on. Nokia might have GREAT hardware and software designing abilities but they just aren’t that popular in the United States and are losing ground in other parts of the world as well.
Like Nokia’s own CEO said, a Surface Phone would boast the Windows Phone ecosystem.
I also suspect that a Surface Phone would kill off Windows Phone partner sales in a big way. The main reason that this doesn’t happen with the Surface RT is that it might be a tablet with a dock, but there are still things it can’t do that other hybrids, tablets and laptops can— there just seems to be more room for this kind of competition in the tablet world, at least in my opinion.
I could certainly be 100 percent wrong though.
Do you want a Microsoft Surface Phone or are you perfectly happy with with HTC, Samsung, Nokia and other partners are producing so far?
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