Cyanogen, a company who builds custom versions of Android, has announced a strategic partnership with Microsoft to integrate the Redmond based company's software into the OS. Starting later this year, Cyanogen will start shipping with Bing services, Skype, OneDrive, OneNote, Outlook, and Microsoft Office built into the OS.
If you are not familiar with Cyanogen, they are wildly popular in the custom ROM community and have raised a significant amount of money recently, roughly $70 million. The company has previously said their goal is to "diminish Google's control over Android" and this step is a big jump to achieve that goal.
For Microsoft, the win here is obvious, they get their software pre-loaded into Google's OS and of course, Cyanogen is likely receiving some revenue from the company to do so. Under the agreement, Microsoft will create native integration in Cyanogen for its software so that the services feel like a natural experience when using the OS.
Microsoft has been making several plays into the Android arena lately, recently striking a deal with Samsung and now with Cyanogen, the company is making sure that its software is on all the popular Android devices. There is no doubt that Google will not be pleased with this move, as Microsoft has found another way to invade their territory besides charging royalty fees to all of the vendors.