What is it about smartphones capable of running multiple operating systems (just like your laptop or home PC can) that has the companies involved so very, very scared? Could entities like Google lack so much confidence in their platforms that they feel compelled to derail OEM plans to deliver handsets that split their time between Android and something like Windows Phone? It’s not clear just where everyone’s motivations are, but for whatever reason, dual-OS hardware seems to be coming to a screeching halt nearly as soon it enters the public light. First we hear about ASUS backing down from its Android/Windows 8 tablet plans following rumors of Google pressure, and now Huawei is similarly distancing itself from earlier proclamations of support for dual-OS devices, saying that an Android/Windows Phone model is not in the company’s plans.
Just one week ago, that tune was very different, with company exec Shao Yang making some very clear statements in an interview as to Huawei’s interest in such dual-platform hardware, including the news that a device like this would be available in the US by mid-year.
What’s interesting now is that Huawei isn’t saying that Yang was wrong, but instead that the company’s plans have changed since that interview was given. Speculation suggests that Huawei may be reacting to that cancellation news from ASUS for its own dual-OS product. According to Huawei, “at this stage there are no plans to launch a dual-OS smartphone in the near future.”
There’s clearly more to these decisions than we’re privy to, and perhaps we should stop giving Google the stink-eye until we’re sure just how it’s been influencing things. Even if dual-OS phones aren’t some magic bullet for solving the platform question we have to answer when out shopping for new hardware, it would be lovely to at least have the option.