Microsoft partners with local phone-makers to expand Windows Phone in Asia

Mobile World Congress 2014 kicked off in Barcelona yesterday. One of the first revelations at the conference was from Microsoft, which will be pushing its Windows Phone OS even harder in China, India, and across Asia in eleven new tie-ups with homegrown phone-makers in the region. Soon we’ll see Windows Phone devices from China’s Foxconn, Gionee, JSR, Lenovo, and ZTE; India’s Karbonn, Longcheer, Xolo and Lava; plus Korea’s LG and Taiwan’s HTC.

Microsoft continues to search for ways to make Windows Phone stand out against Android and iPhone as its competitors eat up the vast majority of phone sales. While Windows Phone devices were never too expensive to begin with, the company has made it clear the goal is to make cheaperWindows Phone devices compared to Android and iOS in order to attract customers in emerging markets like China. While Mozilla has been hard at work pushing out its low-budget Firefox OS to emerging markets around the globe, Microsoft has spent much of its last four years with Windows Phone trying to compete in major European and U.S. markets against Android and iOS. This new focus appears to be an attempt by the software company to shift gears and target emerging markets like China and other regions much more strongly than before.

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