Microsoft allegedly wants HTC to add Windows Phone as an operating system choice for its current Android smartphones, possibly even removing the associated licensing costs to make such an agreement more attractive.
According to a Bloomberg report, Microsoft made the request last month in preliminary discussions, though no decision has been made. Terry Myerson, the recently named head of Microsoft's operating systems division, allegedly made the request on behalf of the company and "discussed cutting or eliminating the license fee to make the idea more attractive," Bloomberg states. The report claims Myerson will meet with HTC executives this month to continue discussing the proposal.
The report claims it's not known if the smartphones would be loaded with both operating systems or allow a user to choose, though it's more likely the agreement would simply offer the same devices with one operating system or the other.
In June, a source told Neowin that HTC was considering releasing a version of its flagship HTC One smartphone with Windows Phone instead of Android. The source claimed HTC would wait for Microsoft's GDR3 update to the operating system, which is expected to be officially revealed at Nokia's Oct. 22 press event in Abu Dhabi.
HTC remains the second most popular Windows Phone manufacturer behind Nokia according to AdDuplex data. Because of Microsoft's agreement to buy Nokia'a smartphone business, however, many industry analysts have indicated relationships with Microsoft's other smartphone partners have been strained. An HTC representative told Neowin the company was "assessing the situation" when Microsoft and Nokia's agreement was announced.
An agreement with Microsoft could buoy interest in HTC, which announced its first quarterly loss ever on Thursday, posting a net loss of about $101 million for its Q3 2013 fiscal calendar. Many Android smartphone manufacturers have found difficulty competing against Samsung, which uses large marketing campaigns to promote its Galaxy line. Nokia said the uncompetitive Android marketplace was one of the reasons it chose to exclusively partner with Microsoft for its smartphones.
HTC currently offers three Windows Phone products: the Windows Phone 8X, Windows Phone 8XT and Windows Phone 8S.