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Sizzling hot rumor: Microsoft dropping Windows Phone for Android?

Posted: , by Alan F.

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Sizzling hot rumor: Microsoft dropping Windows Phone for Android?
A hot, hot rumor is circulating on Monday night. According to the rumor, Microsoft is giving up on Windows Phone and will turn to Android instead to power its handsets. The rumor states that Redmond will offer Google Play powered devices bolstered by Microsoft apps. In return for dropping Windows Phone, Microsoft will receive from Google versions of Google Maps, YouTube and Search, all designed for Windows.

Things are happening in Redmond where Microsoft has agreed to sell part of Bing Maps to Uber. The company also agreed to close its Web display advertising business, turning it over to AOL and AppNexus. Just the other day, in a letter to employees, Microsoft CEO Satya Nadella said that the company needs to prepare to make "tough choices in areas where things are not working."

In addition, as we pointed out the other day, Microsoft is making noises as though it is getting ready to make a massive write off of goodwill. Doing that would make it easier to sell or spin off the phone handset business. Keep in mind that this is just a rumor for now, and with Windows 10 Mobile  scheduled to start rolling out this fall, it seems hard to imagine that Microsoft would decide to put the kibosh on the updated platform without giving it a fair shake first.

We will be watching this closely in the days and weeks to come. Whatever Nadella decides, there will be reverberations felt throughout the Googleplex in Mountain View and in Waterloo, Ontario. The latter is home to BlackBerry.

Obviously, you should be taking this story with more than just a grain of salt.

source: @MSFTnerd via WMPoweruser, Bloomberg

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posted on 29 Jun 2015, 22:25 7

1. TechieXP1969 (Posts: 14112; Member since: 25 Sep 2013)

Wow this could be a revelation. I just said this is exactly what they should do.

Drop Windows Phone, skin the UI on top of Android and sell it.

posted on 29 Jun 2015, 22:55

10. lyndon420 (Posts: 4956; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)

They tried that with the Nokia X Android phone.

posted on 29 Jun 2015, 23:05 12

12. Johnnokia (Posts: 1144; Member since: 27 May 2012)

Do you watch this Nokia?
You had to go with Android since 2011, when you were world's largest phone manufacturer.

posted on 29 Jun 2015, 23:25 9

17. vincelongman (Posts: 5048; Member since: 10 Feb 2013)

The Nokia X didn't have any Google Play Services though
This is different since its a rumor that Microsoft use Google Play Services

I dont think its going to happen
MS just announced heaps of improvements coming in W10
It seems strange they would suddenly drop all that

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 07:17

62. lyndon420 (Posts: 4956; Member since: 11 Jul 2012)

True although if it had I doubt it would've helped their sales much due to it being ms. But...if Google and ms finally learned how to work together maybe it will be okay (I still won't touch an Android phone put out by ms...not yet anyway).

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 12:18 1

85. xtremesv (Posts: 298; Member since: 21 Oct 2011)

Well, considering how Microsoft / Elop dropped Meego, a promising mobile OS, I wouldn't be surprised they discard Windows Phone eventually. Besides M$ is receiving good money from Android royalties.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 13:08

87. sgodsell (Posts: 4754; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)

Remember even though Microsoft has around the 500,000 apps made for RT and WP devices. Those apps are not agnostic apps. So what if Microsoft or another OEM want to make a mobile device using an Intel processor. Now all those 500,000 apps become completely useless. Unless Microsoft can quickly convert and make all new Universal apps for everything that they currently have. I don't see that happening anytime soon. Where as Android has been an agnostic platform from day one, and has the worlds largest agnostic ecosystem to prove it. Not to mention the hardware that Android and its heart Linux supports is parallel to none.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 16:09 1

92. runzlord (Posts: 242; Member since: 13 Oct 2013)

it would actually never happen

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 21:04

94. Niva. (Posts: 433; Member since: 05 Jan 2015)

Yeah, why would Microsoft do that at this stage? Their OS is great. I can see them providing software for Android but giving up on their maps and search makes no sense.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 16:35 1

93. kach22 (Posts: 153; Member since: 04 Nov 2011)

We have been hearing Heaps of announcement of improvement since windows 6.5. The most classic "improvement" came during windows 7.5 to 8. I am sure we all remember what happened.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 02:55 2

47. joey_sfb (Posts: 6540; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)

I like this new development if its true. Work together make money together. Have a more unified standard that every companies big or small could compete in.

Both Microsoft and Google has enough resources to make a different.

posted on 29 Jun 2015, 23:53 5

23. jroc74 (Posts: 6019; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)

WP fanboy heads would implode if it happened.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 00:53 4

33. Dr.Phil (Posts: 1622; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)

Once again, I think people are misinterpreting "Google Services" to mean that the company will drop their OS in favor of Android. This same sort of rumor was passed around about Blackberry. What I believe it REALLY means is just that: Google services on a Microsoft device. What do you need to run Google Services such as the Play Store? A certain amount of preloaded Google applications.

It makes sense to have the Play store available on the device in exchange for hosting preloaded Google applications, however I denounce the rumors that these companies (Blackberry and Microsoft) are abandoning their respective OSes in favor of Android. Both have poured millions of dollars in their software that it's too early for them to pull out. I think instead what both companies have realized is that it no longer makes sense for there to be so many competing app stores and that it may be best to just hop on board with Google Play. Both Blackberry 10 and the upcoming Windows 10 Mobile have both shown support for Android applications.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 08:08 1

71. Luuthian (Posts: 287; Member since: 09 Sep 2011)

I would generally agree with this more than anything but I fail to see how Google Play will work on a Windows phone. My understanding of Android apps running on Blackberry is that the experience is pretty lacklustre for a number of reasons. My biggest worry is that they'll throw Google Play on Windows Phone and then the Microsoft Store will tank, which is bad for MS, and everyone will use Google Play to download non-native apps and the experience will be so crappy for users that Windows Phone dies anyways.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 09:11

76. meanestgenius (Posts: 16265; Member since: 28 May 2014)

Android apps running on a BlackBerry are not lackluster at all. I have a BlackBerry Passport as my daily driver and I can honestly say that isn't the case. Do the native apps run better than the Android ones? Of course. But Android apps run just about as smooth on a BlackBerry as they would on an Android handset on 4.3.

I agree with Dr. Phil. I think this is a case of Microsoft either adding Google Mobile Services to Windows Phone or adding an Android runtime. I don't think Microsoft is going to tank Windows Phone anytime soon, if at all.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 11:28 1

84. Dr.Phil (Posts: 1622; Member since: 14 Feb 2011)

The reason for that is because when Blackberry runs Android applications it runs it in a separate sandbox, so to speak. This is what causes the lack in performance as you would find on an Android device because it's having to basically load the application on it's own space separate from the rest of the device. The pros of this is, of course, that your device remains secure. Now, whether Microsoft will choose to do that with their devices remains to be seen.

Also, since the Passport and the Classic have square screens, applications on those devices are sometimes blocked off so they can fit on the screens. This is why you see some people complain about gaming on the Blackberry Passport and Classic.

I don't think they would get rid of the Microsoft Store for various reasons including the fact that Windows Mobile 10 is built around the idea of continuity where your desktop apps work on your tablet and work on your mobile phone. Therefore, there will STILL be a need for the Microsoft Store, however I'm betting that you will find a majority of your "mobile only" apps on the Google Play store.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 06:05

57. Plutonium239 (Posts: 1079; Member since: 17 Mar 2015)

There would be no point to that, then it would lag just like android does and would be less secure.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 07:26 3

63. jroc74 (Posts: 6019; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)

Please join us in 2015, thanks.

posted on 20 Jul 2015, 14:37

101. Plutonium239 (Posts: 1079; Member since: 17 Mar 2015)

Sorry, I prefer my phone to not lag after 6 months of having it(like every android(and IOS) device does, sometimes sooner than that). I do not like having to do factory resets often just to keep the device running as it should be. My friend who has a galaxy s6 already had to factory reset it twice since he got it when it came out. Not to mention the fact that Android is vulnerable to malware that can steal information, and Windows Phone is not. Windows Phone(now Windows 10 mobile) does not lag and is far more secure than lagdroid.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 07:02

61. medicci37 (Posts: 1331; Member since: 19 Nov 2011)

They're not that good at building phones either but at least app select will be better

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 10:58

83. waddup121 (unregistered)

Lets do it windows!

posted on 29 Jun 2015, 22:30 18

2. tedkord (Posts: 13863; Member since: 17 Jun 2009)

I hope this isn't true. We need more choices, not fewer.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 00:18 10

25. Commentator (Posts: 3722; Member since: 16 Aug 2011)

I was thinking about this: yeah, competition is generally a good thing for the consumer, but what does WP bring that actually spurs Android and iPhone to do better? Is MS really doing anything to compete, or are they continually playing catch-up?

Also, consider the opportunity cost of continuing their smartphone division: what else could they be funding to help the industry instead of funneling money into a bleeding division?

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 00:54 1

34. jroc74 (Posts: 6019; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)

Yup. Gotta remember they are in this to make money. If the Xbox One wasnt doing as well as it is...even with the sales lead the PS4 has...we would see more 'XBox division might get sold' articles.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 02:04 1

41. elitewolverine (Posts: 5192; Member since: 28 Oct 2013)

Firstly imo the OS itself on a core layer is simply better. If you move away from apps, which were originally designed because of crappy web standards of the time, you have what? Desktop? Linux which google cannot make a dime off of? A market that will not shift over night no matter how cheap chrome OS is.

The new windows is not a separate division, that was the whole point of lumping it together. It is a unified OS with different arms, instead of teams that did things and modified the code so that one app only worked in one place.

What this is most likely doing, is not that MS is adopting android, I can fully see a much cheaper license agreement for android patents (remember 300+ of them, 200 according to china research that are required for your android to even function, including sms), and having google develop its services as a universal app.

Seriously, with the app ecosystem, and the steam roll of win10 that will not be stopped with it being free. Do you think Google is going to ignore the 1billion+ potential devices out in the wild? Hell technically by last count google only had 500million active androids smartphones, despite the number of 'shipped' androids. Not to mention webapps can now be distributed through the store as a universal app. Google poised to make a splash on halolens, VR occulus, and xbox one for the center of peoples mind attention....

While it hasn't happened in the past, imo google can no longer ignore the universal app advantage as a customer service base.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 03:52 2

50. joey_sfb (Posts: 6540; Member since: 29 Mar 2012)

Look like some one is starting an unrelated rumor.

We will see what's is what in 2016 or 2017.

In the meantime, let me enjoy my Android this and Android that.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 05:02 4

54. sgodsell (Posts: 4754; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)

Linux which google cannot make a dime off of? What do you think Androids heart is? Android sits on top of Linux. BTW in today's world no other OS can come close to the versatility, scalability, and the amount of hardware support that Linux has. Windows isn't even close. Also look at IoT right now, Linux has already dominated IoT. These are facts. Look it up yourself.

You talk about universal apps and its ecosystem. You do realize that Microsoft still has to build up its ecosystem with universal apps right. Do you even know what universal apps are? Real universal apps are apps that can work on Windows PC, XBox, tablets, and moble and are agnostic apps (they don't care about the hardware they are running on). Also what do you think Android has? Androids apps have been agnostic (universal like) since it was first introduced. Now Android has a vast agnostic ecosystem of apps, roughly 1.6 million apps. How long do you think it will take Microsoft to build up 1.6 million universal apps?

"Do you think Google is going to ignore the 1billion+ potential devices out in the wild? Hell technically by last count google only had 500million active androids smartphones"
So last year Android alone sold a billion Android smart phones (that is not including Android tablets). Now this year (2015) Android is suppose to sell close to 1.2 billion smart phones. So where did you get that number of only 500 million active Android smart phones? BTW why do you think Microsoft has made Windows free in the first place? It's because Microsoft is trying to stop the spread of Android which has been free since day one. Not to mention Apple's OS is free on Macs as well. Microsoft's biggest seller was always Windows OS itself. The company that can no longer ignore Google is Microsoft themselves.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 10:05

81. WallStreetWolf (Posts: 289; Member since: 08 Apr 2013)

Lets not call Android agnostic when it does a poor job with tablet specific apps and a lackluster interface on a standard laptop or desktop.

1 billion were shipped. That does not mean active users. Of course Android has a lot of users, but shipping devices is not the same as them landing in a customer's hand.

I don't mind Android one bit. I have enjoyed Android phones and tablets over the years, but I never dismiss what the competition is doing. Microsoft is breathing life into its operating system and people should be excited to see something from a competitor rather than poo pooing it because we enjoy living in the Orwellian state of the mobile industry.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 12:53 1

86. sgodsell (Posts: 4754; Member since: 16 Mar 2013)

Do you even know what agnostic even means? It means the apps are not tied to any hardware. This is what Microsoft and Apple are now trying to achieve with Universal apps and Swift apps. But Android has been their since day one, and has the largest ecosystem in the world of agnostic applications. So how far along is Microsoft's and Apples ecosystem with agnostic applications? We both know the answer to that one. Its not very far. Its not like the apps convert themselves over automatically.

Yes 1 billion sold for just Android alone in 2014. I did not say shipped. So you completely ignored what I said about 2015 with roughly 1.2 billion going to sell (not shipped) for Android.

I agree with you competition is good. However elitewolverine was telling lies and spreading incorrect information. So I will correct anyone who does not get their facts straight, which includes you. Also if we lived in an Orwellian state of the mobile industry. Then there would only be one mobile OS to control them all. However we know today that there is several.

If any platform is really good, then it would grow on its own merits. Clearly this is what has happened with Android. It has grown on its own merits. It is free, and others are following it. So why didn't WP grow on its own merits? If you can honestly answer that, then you will have your answer.

posted on 30 Jun 2015, 22:38

96. jroc74 (Posts: 6019; Member since: 30 Dec 2010)

"Lets not call Android agnostic when it does a poor job with tablet specific apps and a lackluster interface on a standard laptop or desktop."

Glad someone bought this up....

Read up on Android Fragments...and understand why I said earlier that Google was ahead of MS on the universal app front.

Android doesnt really need tablet specific apps. The dev can code it to scale based on screen size, resolution, etc and have different features based on screen size, resolution, etc. Only reason some apps are labeled tablet in the Play Store is either the dev is targeting tablets only or to appease those caught up on "where are the tablet apps at?"

And a perfect example is MS own Office apps. They dont have 2 seperate apps....but in the description its listed for phone and tablets. Screen layout, functions change based on the screen size. Something that Apple is finally starting to push more for now. Why have seperate phone and tablet apps if you dont have to?

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