The Web is buzzing about Microsoft's new mobile OS, Windows Phone 7. With a sexy and sleek UI, it seems Microsoft has finally gotten it right and is now able to compete with the bigger players like Apple and Google (Android). However, design aside, it would seem Microsoft's WP7 is at a disadvantage already; it's not free.
The Business Insider reports that, during his keynote speech, Steve Ballmer said Microsoft's business model for Windows Mobile would remain the same. Yes, despite the fact that the company was introducing a completely new operating system that couldn't be more different from Windows Mobile, the company would be sticking with the WinMo business model. This includes imposing a fee upon phone manufacturers who wish to license WP7.
"I think there's something clean and simple and easy to understand about our model," Ballmer said. "We build something, we sell that thing." He added, "I think it's not only in our best interests, but it's ... a simple model that's easy for developers, handset manufacturers, and our operator partners to deal with, to understand, and to build from."
You'd assume that choosing to charge would be a deterrent for manufacturers but according to Ballmer, several WP7 partners already have phones in the works; on Monday, Microsoft has said Dell, Garmin-Asus, HTC, HP, LG, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Toshiba and Qualcomm are all on board. HTC will release its first WP7 phone before the end of the year.