updated 02:45 pm EST, Thu November 8, 2007
MS downplays Android
Speaking at a press conference in Tokyo, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has challenged the significance of Google's future Android operating system for cellphones. Android contrasts with Microsoft's Windows Mobile in that it is an open platform; while developers can write third-party programs and layers for Windows, Android should allow cheaper and easier customization, better suited to the requirements of phone makers. The problem, says Ballmer, is that Android is merely in its beginning stages.
"So we have great momentum, we've brought our Windows Mobile 6 software to market, we're driving forward on our future releases and we'll have to see what Google does," he comments. "Right now they have a press release, we have many, many millions of customers, great software, many hardware devices and they're welcome in our world." IDG News highlights statistics quoted by Ballmer, which include the presence of Windows Mobile on 150 different devices, and on 100 different phone carriers. Some 20 million Windows Mobile phones may be licensed this year, Ballmer claims.