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RUMOR: Is Microsoft preparing for its own mobile-device hardware?
Posted by Arne Hess - on Friday, 28.04.06 - 16:38:23 CET under 01 - General News - Viewed 14189x
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As Taiwanese DigiTimes reported today, Microsoft is cooperating closely with four Taiwanese enterprises and a local research organization through its Microsoft Technology Center in Taiwan (MTC) to develop various multimedia devices, Microsoft COO Kevin Turner pointed out at yesterday a press conference held in Taipei.

Cooperating with Microsoft are High Tech Computer (Smartphones, PDA phones, mobile live digital TV phones based on Windows Mobile platform), Arima Communications (Multimedia handsets technologically based on MWA (Windows Media Audio), WMV (Windows Media Video) and WMDRM (Windows Media Digital Rights Management)), Alpha Networks (Digital media players, network DVD players, wireless audio players, HDTV hybrid set-top boxes and IPTV, all technologically based on WMA, WMV and WMDRM), Sunplus Technology (Addition of Windows Media Photo technology to processors of digital cameras) and the Electronics & Optoelectronics Research Lab (Application of WMA and WMV technology to FVD (forward versatile disc), a self-developed red-laser high-definition DVD standard) under the government-sponsored Industrial Technology Research Institute (ITRI).

That's a quite interesting piece of news, if you take an interview with Steve Ballmer he recently gave the German newspaper "Die Welt". Ballmer confirmed, that Microsoft is opening itself to compete with Apple in terms of hardware as well. While Microsoft have no intention to make its own PCs, he can imagine to produce its own PDAs, Smartphones and Portable Media devices where appropriate. While he said, that self-developed and manufactured hardware should be the exception, Microsoft is open to do so anyway if the market requires it. Nevertheless, he also confirmed to continue the way with its ODMs as started in the past.
Nevertheless, he hasn't made any announcement yet nor he confirmed anything concrete: "How these could look like, we will communicate to you, if it is ready to communicate".

But anyway, if I take the DigiTimes article and put it in relation with Die Welt's interview, it could become true that we might see sooner or later the highly integrated "Portable Media Center Camera Phone". At least Microsoft seems to have set the course for it already.

Cheers ~ Arne

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Posted by on 11.05.06 - 21:56:33

This is how i see it:
As i surfed a little qtek's europe web page
at the bottom of the page you can read "The Qtek brand is owned by HTC corp, Taiwan"
Who is HTC nonother that probably the biggest seller of smart devices this days and in an official way MSFT is having a partnership with them.
So the rumor that is being whispered arround has already it's main steps done.
Qtek has the market along with the mobile operators , HTC has the resources to serve the market and also i would say "full" support from MSFT so now it won't be an amazing thing to read on a web page something like "The HTC brand is owned by MSFT corp, US"

Posted by on 11.05.06 - 22:00:49

Not to forget that already HTC is taking over the development of customisation software from 3rd party vendors, and MSFT has established a Embeded Development headquater in the UK in order to work closer with carriers for customisation issues...So probably MSFT will create the monopol from one end to the other one day... hope it doesn't smile

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