By Charles Mgbolu
Major ICT markets in the country are fast expecting a new Microsoft smartphone Windows phone 7 to hit them soon. This is coming a week and eight months after the unveiling of Windows Phone 7 OS.
Microsoft made the anticipated and almost inevitable foray into the realm of smart phones with the launch of the latest version of its mobile phone operating system, called Windows Phone 7 series at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona.
Launching the software which has a redesigned user interface and incorporates many Microsoft services such as Xbox LIVE games and the Zune music service, Microsoft’s CEO, Steve Ballmer, conceded that the SmartPhone market has been an Achilles heel for Microsoft and in an acknowledgement that it has a lot of catching up to do in relation to Apple and Blackberry, he said Microsoft will and are doing things differently too.
According to research firm Canalys, Microsoft’s software currently has around 9% of the smartphone market and will be looking to push on from its current fourth position in the global market behind Symbian, RIM (makers of the Blackberry) and Apple’s iPhone OS.
The phones will find their way to over 60 cellphone operators in more than 30 countries this year. Microsoft tapped Dell, HTC, LG, and Samsung to deliver the Snapdragon-based handsets with a carrier list that includes AT&T, T-Mobile USA, and Telstra for the first wave and will launch even more handsets in 2011 including the first for Sprint and Verizon in the US.
On this collaboration, Ballmer says, “Microsoft and its partners are delivering a different kind of mobile phone and experience – one that makes everyday tasks faster by getting more done in fewer steps and providing timely information in a ‘glance and go’ format.”
‘We have a chance to make an impact on the market,” said Microsoft boss Steve Ballmer. having taken so long to get into the market, whether they do remains to be seen. — Charles Mgbolu