Mobile and Wireless: HTC, Microsoft Go Big With Windows Phone 8X, 8S: First Look
Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer
At the end of October, Microsoft will introduce its Window 8 software for tablets and PCs and Windows Phone 8 software for smartphones. Taking no chances on the success of Windows 8, Microsoft developed its own tablet, the Surface. So far, it is trusting partners to create smartphones that make consumers fall in love with Windows Phone 8. "The experience on Windows Phone 8 is like the experience on no other phone," Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said at a Sept. 19 event with HTC. He added, "We are incredibly enthused about what we can do with HTC."
HTC and Microsoft introduced the Windows Phone 8X and Windows Phone 8S at a New York City event Sept. 19. Thin and light and available in a handful of primary colors, the phones feature, respectively, 4.3- and 4-inch SuperLCD displays. The 8S, like the Apple iPhone 5, weighs just under 4 ounces. In addition to their lithe physiques, HTC is emphasizing the phones' sound qualitywith perks coming from its partnership with Beats Audioand cameras, including the generally overlooked front-facing camera. While HTC is better known to American consumers for its Android-running smartphones, HTC CEO Peter Chou said the companies have a 15-year working relationship and that HTC approached Microsoft about doing something "bigger and better than ever." Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer described the phones as "built from the ground up" to showcase the Windows Phone software. "It's a Windows Phone hero product," he added. "They have incredible cameras ... and killer, killer sound. Consumers are going to love these phones." In November, following the official launch of the Windows Phone 8 operating system, the 8X and 8S will be available in the United States from Verizon Wireless, AT&T and T-Mobile.