It’s one of those rumors that just won’t seem to go away: will Microsoft release its own smartphone? Ever since the company shared its Surface tablets with us, it’s seemed like a very real possibility that Microsoft could continue its spread into consumer electronics with a Windows Phone 8 handset of its own. Of course, “possible” and “likely” are two very different things, and the evidence for such a product has been scant, at best. We’ve seen signs in a benchmark database that certainly pointed in the right direction, but nothing concrete. We’re still waiting for such a thing to arrive, but in the meantime, some new rumors seek to add credence to what we’ve heard with some additional detail.
According to some of BGR’s sources, Microsoft is still planning to release a Windows Phone 8 device. Supposedly, it wouldn’t be involved in the initial rush to release hardware running the new platform, but would hold back until later, possibly in early 2013. That might let Microsoft go ahead with its plans without stepping on the toes of too many OEM partners.
As shouldn’t surprise you, this is supposed to be one heck of a top-tier handset, competing against the best of Android and the iPhone 5. There’s a chance it may also arrive under the Surface brand, though that’s far from certain.