Microsoft is supposedly preparing its Windows Phone "Tango" update for lower-end smartphones.
Over the past
day or so, the Microsoft-oriented parts of the blogosphere have chattered
mightily about the existence of a stripped-down Windows Phone OS code-named
stems in large part from an Aug. 23 posting
on a Hong Kong-based Website
titled "We Love Windows Phone," which described Tango as a version of Windows
Phone for low-cost hardware, targeted at developing markets (China, India,
etc.). According to a Google Translation of the Website, Tango "is not a major
update." Supposedly, all this information was confirmed by speakers at a
Microsoft seminar in Hong Kong.
journalists on this side of the Pacific quickly picked through the story. "I've
heard there are, indeed, two Tango releases on tap," Mary-Jo Foley wrote in an
Aug. 24 posting on her All About Microsoft
blog. The first one will
expand "the Windows Phone footprint into new markets," while the second "will
be targeted at low-cost devices and include fixes and new features."
gearing up to release Windows Phone "Mango," a massive update with some 500 new
features and tweaks, including expanded functionality for the Xbox Live and
Office hubs. The company almost certainly hopes that the revamped software
platform, in conjunction with new hardware partners and devices, will help
reinvigorate its smartphone franchise, which faces substantial competition from
the likes of Apple iPhone and Google Android.
Mango, the rumor mill (as exemplified by this Slashgear post
) has it that Microsoft will push a
major update code-named "Apollo."
Gartner recently plugged Microsoft's share of the global smartphone market at
1.6 percent for the second quarter of 2011, down from 4.9 percent a year ago.
That trails Google Android with 43.4 percent, Nokia's Symbian with 22.1
percent, Apple iOS with 18.2 percent, RIM's BlackBerry franchise with 11.7
percent, and Bada-a mobile OS developed by Samsung-with 1.9 percent.
firms have described a similar tumble for Microsoft's smartphone market share.
Research firm comScore, for example, recently estimated that Microsoft
smartphones declined from 7.5 percent to 5.8 percent of the market for the
three-month period ending in June. Those numbers include both Windows Phone and
the company's more antiquated Windows Mobile platform, which is being phased
introduces a version of Windows Phone for cheaper handsets, it could open up a
potentially lucrative market segment-and perhaps give the platform the traction
it needs to become a more viable competitor in the space.
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