Microsoft has made an announcement that a few years ago would have been bizarre, but that today, the company which leads Nadella, makes more sense than it seems: a ROM of Windows Phone for Android devices. At the moment, that Yes, will only come certain terminals Xiaomi as the Mi4. Nothing is by chance and, although seems it not, It has much sense having chosen this brand.
It is early to say that Microsoft wants to plunge into Android and subtract market share with ROMs ready for than the flasheemos. However, in Redmond are aware that Windows Phone is away from Android and iOS, undisputed Titans in the category of mobile devices. They have few partners in hardware and this experiment could help them grow a little and do not, will not increase its market share by installing your system in a few few Mi4.
It is not one market either, it is China
If Microsoft had announced that it would distribute Windows 10, is the version that will reach Xiaomi, so international Android would have made a big mistake. First by not annotate and shoot without aiming, second because this great mass that uses Android throughout the world It is not the work of manually with a step by step install a ROM, and more with the shortcomings which is still Windows Mobile.
In Redmond have put his finger on the map with much certainty: China. It is no coincidence. China, as some of you already know, is land forbidden for many tech firms, including Google. Mobile phones that are sold in this country do not include the services of the Mountain View giant and there, local companies such as Baidu, come to do business with alternative services: search engines, social networks…
That is where comes Microsoft, such and as they explain, they want to take advantage of the current situation in China to develop business and offer your services. What better way do it take a manufacturer as big as Xiaomi and put a ROM with Windows 10? Everything is good news.
Xiaomi is today the largest seller of mobile phones in China, probably a few dare to change the ROM but this “switch” will help Microsoft to go feeling the market and see what they can do with Windows 10 in the future. In fact, it is an interesting experiment to try the platform and see how to reach more devices.
Microsoft is aware that China is a market with great potential but also with a series of obstacles, such as piracy. So much so that in Redmond have announced upgrades to Windows 10 will be free, you have or not a licence paid.
Now, remains to be seen if this movement Returns to win the manufacturers and, by extension, become a hollow in the meantime Android. It makes sense, but if they want to go beyond China’s going to have much more complicated.
It is not the platform, it is the ecosystem
For taste colors, no doubt, but Windows Phone today is an interesting platform. Fluid and your operating system has a few virtues. However, the problem is not that are usable or not, the biggest obstacle for Microsoft in mobile is the ecosystem of applications.
Has the basics, and increasingly there are more applications, but go far from what can offer Android for example. Adheres well to the more basic use but if you have more specific needs we will see that there are so many solutions or that certain integrations in the system do not work as well as in Google’s operating system.
Microsoft knows that being important on mobiles is critical to their future. They have done a great job integrating Office in Android or buying bright applications such as Sunrise. In fact, its strategy with Windows 10 having the same system on all screens has a good approach but, again, the ecosystem (or lack of it) is essential.
We will see if the movement of Microsoft It is only a hint either they are serious to Android devices. The strategy is curious, they once bet very strong on certain manufacturers but did not Jell. Third place is secured already in many markets but the difference so big against Android and iOS bronze hung a medal having not shine much.