updated 12:15 pm EDT, Fri October 2, 2009
Acer next to use Android over Win Mobile
Acer is the next smartphone maker to move much of its attention away from Windows Mobile, sources within the field hinted today. Even though as recently as February it promised mostly Windows Mobile phones, DigiTimes has heard the company is now switching its attention to Google's Android and should ship "at least half" of its 2010 phones with the mostly open-source OS. The first Acer-made Android phone, the A1, is now estimated to ship in November.
Why Acer is changing so quickly isn't specified, though Android has so far been less expensive to license than Windows Mobile and is designed for finger touch where Microsoft's platform prefers a stylus.
The shift if confirmed would represent the third major partner for Microsoft to either drop or downplay Windows Mobile from its lineup. Palm has shed all earlier platforms for the sake of webOS, but Motorola has also said that all of its smartphones for the near future will be Android-based devices like the Cliq and avoid Windows Mobile. A fourth is also at risk as i-mate has temporarily shut after fraud has threatened the company's collapse.
Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer has already publicly acknowledged a poor result for the OS but has promised that Windows Mobile 7 in 2010 will help the platform's image.