One of the biggest questions facing Microsoft and the future of Windows Phone is what shape the platform’s landscape will take as Lumia phones become Microsoft-made; will other OEMs dare to compete? While we’ve seen evidence that some are sticking around, and heard outright assurances from others, there’s still been this sense that healthy competition is drying up, rather than growing. Is there any hope for some fresh blood? According to the latest rumors, there just might be, as we hear that Microsoft’s courting Sony to develop Windows Phone 8 hardware.
While Sony appears to have dabbled with Windows Phone in the past (at least internally), the company has yet to release such a commercial product. According to this source, Microsoft has been talking with Sony about possibly getting around to that, and while a lot of details would have to be ironed-out, making this far from a sure thing, there’s a chance that Sony might have something ready to go later in 2014.
Beyond getting Sony’s interest, Microsoft has also supposedly been encouraging ZTE to return to the Windows Phone market, and the company could be back with a budget-priced handset of its own.