Microsoft to Battle Android in Low-End Market

Microsoft intends to take on Google’s Android head-on by working on new launches with its Windows operating system. The company says it will target the high-volume low-end segment of the mobile communications market bringing new products from its recent acquisition, Nokia, but also from mass-marketers Micromax, Lava and Karbonn.

According to Microsoft Consumer Channels Group GM, Chakrapani Gollapali, in the next three months, “You will see some really aggressive portfolio expansion.”

Android currently dominates the global gadgets market, while Apple’s iOS dominates the premium segment. Microsoft’s Windows OS, which charges a license fee on hardware makers, has only a 3% share of the global smartphone market while in the tablet segment they account for even less.


However, Microsoft has taken steps over the past few months to increase customer adoption of its devices. It has dropped the license fee for Windows, making it free for companies that make phones and tablets for the consumer market, which is defined as produces with screen sizes under nine inches. It is also offering a year’s free subscription to the Microsoft cloud-based service, Office 365, on new devices that run on Windows.

“The idea is to ensure that as you look at customer acquisition, you also want people to use and experience Office,” according to Gollapali.

Microsoft’s new offers come at a time when it also created alliances with a number of volume phone makers which would manufacture affordable devices that offer the Windows OS. When announcing the latest version of the Windows Phone mobile operating system, Windows Phone 8.1, the company also revealed several partnerships with Indian phone makers including Micromax, Lava, Karbonn, and Xolo.

Gollapali says that Windows phone has been accepted rather well in India as is evidenced by a 5% share of the market, much ahead of Apple’s iOS. The focus now, he says, will be to have a set of devices at an “affordable” level, and the top-end, “… that would complete the whole desirability and affordability needs of the market.”

The Microsoft official says that Windows phones have managed to gain customers from both the Android and the iOS operating systems.

Author Patricia, is an editor @ key difference. Have passoinate to write article about mobile website design and android development.