Bless Microsoft’s heart; it’s still betting on Windows Phones. In fact, Microsoft is “excited” about the “impressive growth of the Windows Phone ecosystem.” The company is so excited that it released the infographic (posted above), bragging about that growth.
Have you looked at the smartphones Microsoft has introduced so far at World Mobile Congress? I hadn’t heard of most of the brands, but any growth is better than none. We aren't going to look too hard at any specs, since none of them are high-end, but you can see some pictures of them.
Chinese company Coship has two Windows Phone offerings; the 4.5 inch Coship BVC L08 LTE smartphone will be “offered at an affordable price” starting in April. Microsoft said the 6x3 inch BVC X1 LTE phone “is comfortable in extreme environments with its water-proof and dust-resistant capabilities.”
K Touch, also in China, will begin selling the 4.5 inch Windows Phone 8.1 in mid-March.
The E8 is another Windows Phone 8.1 offering by K Touch. The display is 4 inches and the phone has rounded corners making it “more compact and sleek.”
European markets will sell a KAZAM L8 tablet; it has 2MP rear and front cameras that are "perfect for capturing images or making calls using Skype." The 5-inch KAZAM Thunder 450W "comes in a bright lime shade and offers dual SIM." The L7 tablet was described as "reliable, easy to use and affordable."
In the Philippines, there’s the Cherry Mobile Alpha Neon which “comes in cyan, yellow, red, lime and ivory;” the Cherry Mobile Alpha View version comes in black and white and has dual SIM capabilities.
The XOLO Win Q1000 will be sold in India. Microsoft described it as having a “mesmerizing One Glass Solution display allowing you to see crystal clear images and vibrant colors. The phone also comes with an 8MP rear camera with PureCel image sensor for quality pictures.”
Acer is at least a familiar brand. The 4-inch Acer Liquid M220 “is the first ever Liquid smartphone to run on the Windows Phone 8.1 operating system." It has a “233 pixels per inch (PPI) display, 5MP auto-focus main and 2MP front cameras;” it also features an “89-degree-wide-angle lens on the main camera.” M220 hits the market in in April.
Lumia 640 and Lumia 640 XL
Two other Windows Phones announced at MWC are the Lumia 640 and Lumia 640 XL. The specs leaked back in February. The 5-inch 640 will come in 3G and LTE versions, as well as a dual-SIM LTE flavor. It will include an 8MP and a 1MP selfie camera, and an LED flash for the first time.
Like its bigger and more improved cousin, the 5.7-inch 640 XL, the 640 will come in cyan, orange, black and white. The 640 is expected to cost $155 for the 3G version and $175 for the LTE flavor. The 640 will ship with a one-year subscription for Office 365; after it is upgraded to Windows 10, it will also latest and greatest version of Office Touch.
640 XL will also hit the market next month, with the 3G version costing $215 and the LTE version ringing in at $245. The 640 XL will come with a one-year subscription for Office 365, which includes 1TB of OneDrive storage, as well as 60 minutes of Skype calls
Microsoft said its new Windows Phone flagships are due out “later this year.” The only phones that were not low-end phones, yet were somewhat related to Microsoft, were not included in Microsoft’s infographic of pride; that's because they are Androids.
Samsung announced that both the Samsung Galaxy S6 and S6 edge will ship with a "Microsoft Apps" folder that includes OneNote and OneDrive which comes with 115GB for 2 years as well as Microsoft’s Skype app.
While we didn’t look at the all the Windows Phones and tablets so far announced at MWC, Sony announced one that seems too slick to ignore. And Sony’s new ultra-thin 10.1 inch Xperia Z4 tablet will ship with Microsoft Office apps for Android.