Microsoft will not build their own phones

If you had high hopes that Microsoft would build its own branded phone after they announced the Surface tablet, your dreams have been crushed. In an interview with Information week, the company was asked if they had plans to adopt a similar strategy for Windows Phone like that of the tablet and Greg Sullivan, senior marketing manager for Windows Phone, said, "No, we do not."

While the idea did seem plausible after Microsoft showed off Surface, considering the relationship the company has with Nokia, it would have surely deeply upset Elop who took Nokia off of a burning platform to the salvation of Windows Phone.

The Surface hardware appears to be a desirable tablet but unfortunately it would seem that we will not see Microsoft dedicates its resources to its own branded smartphone. After seeing the surface, we would love to see what Microsoft could do for the consumer phone segment but we will have to wait a bit longer for that dream to come a reality. 

Windows Phone 8 will arrive this holiday season and it will bring with it platform parity to the Windows 8 ecosystem. With a new start screen, deep Skype integration, and many other new features, Windows Phone 8 will be a solid update to Windows Phone 7.5 even if we don't have a first party device.

Source: Information Week

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"If you had high hopes that Microsoft would build its own branded phone after they announced the Surface tablet, your dreams have been crushed"

right because if you had asked micorosft about surface a month ago, they would have told the truth

silly neowin, off course they are going to say that.

I still don't own a cellphone of any sort, I was sort of hoping Microsoft would make one then I would have bought one. Unlike some, I have grown quite fond of Microsoft as of late. Maybe I'll check out their tablet when it comes out instead.

Maybe MS will just end up buying Nokia and keep the Nokia branding. It is a world wide brand after all, so they would be making their own phones under Nokia's name.

Unlike the tablet sphere--where every OEM is throwing the same garbage at the wall and hoping that it sicks even though every consumer knows that it won't--Microsoft has a good partner in Nokia making very solid phones that they are also willing to market after releasing (unlike HTC and Samsung, which only advertise their Android phones).

Until Nokia craps out, which I hope that it won't happen, then Microsoft will likely stick with them as their primary OEM that effectively is their extended arm anyway because of their extremely close relationship.

efjay said,
Didnt they say the same thing about making their own PC hardware at some point?

And video game hardware when they were working with Sega.

efjay said,
Didnt they say the same thing about making their own PC hardware at some point?

and although i cant find it, im almost positive they said the same thing about MP3 devices before Zune.

MikeInBA said,

and although i cant find it, im almost positive they said the same thing about MP3 devices before Zune.

Yeah, when they were pushing their "Play for Sure" DRM technology. It was a nice kick in the pants to their partners when they announced Zune AND that Zune wouldn't use "Play for Sure".

MikeInBA said,
And video game hardware when they were working with Sega.

and although i cant find it, im almost positive they said the same thing about MP3 devices before Zune.

But who cares? Sega failed as a hardware company after the Dreamcast. This was not Microsoft's fault, and they still wanted to continue to push DirectX onto consoles.

Each one of those cases boils down to a failure of OEMs forcing Microsoft's hands.

Not going to make their own tablets? Not unless their OEMs have proven too pathetic to make an iPad competitor.

Not going to make video game hardware? Not unless their OEM (effectively) pulls out of the business, leaving Nintendo and Sony as the only competitors.

Not going to make an MP3 player? Not unless their OEMs prove incapable of beating Apple to anything, or innovating even modestly.

As long as Microsoft has Nokia, then they will probably stay out of the phone hardware business. I doubt Microsoft cares about Samsung or HTC though, as both seem to only barely care about Windows Phone.

daniel_rh said,
It would be like a knife in the back for Nokia!

Yes, I bought Lumia 800 thinking that I will be able to upgrade to Windows 8 after, I know this is not depending on Nokia, but their decision not to upgrade at least Lumia's family will hurt Nokia, If I would know at the time when I was asking Nokia with WP or Samsung with Android, I would have pick the Android one.

SubZenit said,

Yes, I bought Lumia 800 thinking that I will be able to upgrade to Windows 8 after, I know this is not depending on Nokia, but their decision not to upgrade at least Lumia's family will hurt Nokia, If I would know at the time when I was asking Nokia with WP or Samsung with Android, I would have pick the Android one.

Windows Phone 8 requires the S4 on hardware encryption. That is why the current WP 7.x phones will not be upgraded to WP8. WP8 devices will have secureboot, Bitlocker, etc... Sadly WP7.x hardware cannot support those encryption features.

Hardware-Based Security - integrated into the Snapdragon processor is
Qualcomm's Secure MSM. It provides encrypted boot, operation and file
security for hardware-grade data security -- features not support on WP7.x hardware.

SubZenit said,

Yes, I bought Lumia 800 thinking that I will be able to upgrade to Windows 8 after, I know this is not depending on Nokia, but their decision not to upgrade at least Lumia's family will hurt Nokia, If I would know at the time when I was asking Nokia with WP or Samsung with Android, I would have pick the Android one.

I understand what you're saying and I too have WP7 device that won't upgrade to 8 but I still think there is hope that more of the yet-to-be-announced user features of Windows Phone 8 may yet arrive in the 7.8 update. If they are able to strike a balance between new OS features that can be added to WP7 and new platform advances like multi-core CPUs, native code etc on WP8 then that *might* go some way to repaying people's investment in WP7.

spc1972 said,
I understand what you're saying and I too have WP7 device that won't upgrade to 8 but I still think there is hope that more of the yet-to-be-announced user features of Windows Phone 8 may yet arrive in the 7.8 update. If they are able to strike a balance between new OS features that can be added to WP7 and new platform advances like multi-core CPUs, native code etc on WP8 then that *might* go some way to repaying people's investment in WP7.
There was a tweet or post from an MS employee that stated something along the lines of, "the only feature that we announced for WP7.8 is the start screen," implying that we will all get more features for our phones, but the Start Screen was probably the biggest.

ryuh3d said,

Windows Phone 8 requires the S4 on hardware encryption. That is why the current WP 7.x phones will not be upgraded to WP8. WP8 devices will have secureboot, Bitlocker, etc... Sadly WP7.x hardware cannot support those encryption features.

Hardware-Based Security - integrated into the Snapdragon processor is
Qualcomm's Secure MSM. It provides encrypted boot, operation and file
security for hardware-grade data security -- features not support on WP7.x hardware.


windows phone 8 require the encryption before microsoft made it that way, not because a divinity dictated them during development that they would need to make this happen.

the oft-praised hardware requirements (WP7 running on very limited hardware choices in terms of CPU etc) that made it possible for microsoft to issue updates for wp devices all at the same time (as opposed to the android way), has resulting in this mess.

when all is said and done, is mostly a PR hit than anything else. I guess even to this day you can still say that WP7 hasnt hit enough people for this to become such a concern. hell, even very popular android phones get a poor update treatment from the OEMs while their next iterations will still sell like hot cakes.

Julius Caro said,
hell, even very popular android phones get a poor update treatment from the OEMs while their next iterations will still sell like hot cakes.
I think this sums up just about how much normal people will care about this. I am still bothered by the fact that WP8 will not be coming to my Lumia 900, but at the end of the day I understand that there are hardware limitations at play, unlike the other ecosystems that simply "age out" their hardware.

After all, the WP7 chassis requirements are based on technology from two years ago. It's disappointing to think about, and I have even stated that Microsoft should have planned better with the chassis requirements, but it appears that the necessary chips did not exist, and I suspect Microsoft has been working with Qualcomm (et al) to put hardware security into their ARM processors since committing to ARM for Windows 8. This is probably the fruit of that labor, and, frankly, anyone that jumps onto the platform will be happier for it.

If not for the security benefits, I would be furious that we were blocked from WP8. That alone is justifiable to me because my phone carries just about everything personal to me: my Facebook credentials, my email (and access to just about everything that that unlocks), my contacts, and my texts. So, selling me on that security is easy as ryuh3d pointed out. Nokia has a pretty easy job selling me another phone this Fall, as well as for my girlfriend (as long as they make a small phone), and the rest of my family.

For the rest of those that choose to stick it out, I expect the Start Screen to be enough to hold people over until they miss major apps that are ported from native code. And for the handful that are still legitimately bitter, I hope that Microsoft holds true to their loose promise that there is more to WP7.8 than just the start screen.

s3n4te said,
Too bad, I would've totally bought one if they made a Surface WP8 Phone.
IMO, Nokia == MS Hardware. I hope Verizon gets their top class device this fall. I want off ATT so bad but really do enjoy my Titan. I'll go where WP8 + Nokia is... sadly it may be staying at ATT