updated 03:00 pm EST, Mon November 9, 2009
Samsung may deal Microsoft severe blow
Samsung is about deal Microsoft one of its most severe blows yet by dropping Windows Mobile from most of its phones, an investment note issued today says. HMC Investment Securities analyst Greg Noh understands that the Korean company's use of Windows Mobile will crash from 80 percent this year to just 50 percent in 2010 and will lower further still in future years. Just 20 percent of Samsung's phones should use the platform by 2012.
In exchange, Samsung will increase its use of Android to about 30 percent next year and keep the percentage relatively constant through the same period. Symbian use should shrink to just a few percent in 2010 and should disappear altogether in 2011. A new proprietary Samsung OS should arrive next year and gradually form about half of all the company's smartphone sales.
Samsung has yet to directly confirm or deny the claims.
If accurate, the switch in strategy may reflect a combined larger exodus away from Windows Mobile for those major firms that still use the platform. HTC, the largest single Windows Mobile device maker, has already been rumored as switching more than half of its 2010 phones to Android. LG has signed a pact with Microsoft to make Windows Mobile phones but even now has introduced its first Android phone and is said by HMC to be extending its use significantly more.
These partial defections have so far stemmed from both a desire to reduce dependency on Microsoft as well as a hope for support of more modern smartphone features, such as fast, accurate web browsing and capacitive touchscreens with finger-ready interfaces. Windows Mobile 6.5 has new touch-ready features but is based on the same fundamental design as Windows Mobile 5.0.