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Microsoft is facing the new reality of the smartphone market with a reported Android smartphone launch scheduled for this month’s Mobile World Congress. Most smartphone market growth is now coming from lower-priced phones, and the Microsoft/Nokia team does not have a compelling offering there. Microsoft is of course buying Nokia’s device business for $7.2 billion, and the Finnish company was already at work on an Android phone when the Microsoft deal was made. Now the Wall Street Journal is reporting that Microsoft has decided to go ahead and launch the Android phone, even though it is investing heavily in helping Nokia market competing Windows smartphones. One thing to keep in mind here is that Microsoft makes money on both Windows and Android smarpthones because it licenses intellectual property to Google. One patent expert told RCR that from a software perspective, Microsoft makes more money on Android phones than on Windows phones.
No word yet on whether the Microsoft Android phone will also run Windows. It’s expected to launch at Mobile World Congress later this month.
Mobile Minute: Microsoft Android phone?