Microsoft is trying to stem the slide in market share of its mobile operating system in China with a push into the low-end smartphone market.
Bringing the price of Windows smartphones down to Rmb1,000 ($158) in the Chinese market was the target, said Simon Leung, the company’s chief executive for Greater China. “We will continue to drive the price down,” he added.
The remarks came as Microsoft introduced Windows Phone 7.5, in China on Wednesday, the latest version of its mobile OS which it said runs better on cheaper and lower-powered devices.
本周三，微软在中国发布了Windows Phone 7.5，这是微软最新版本的移动操作系统，微软称，它能够更加流畅地运行于价格更低、能耗更小的设备上。
China is likely to be a key battleground in Microsoft’s attempt to increase market share in mobile devices as the country is expected to overtake the US as the world’s largest smartphone market by shipments this year according to IDC, the market intelligence company.
In the fourth quarter of 2011, the share of Microsoft’s mobile operating system in the Chinese smartphone market by unit sales shrank to 1.2 per cent, from 5.2 per cent in the first quarter, as the share of devices running Google’s Android system soared from 33.6 per cent to 68.4 per cent, according to Analysys, the research firm.
But Mr Leung said Microsoft would aim for the top spot in China.
Some Android smartphones from low-end local brands retail for less than Rmb500 in China, but the price tag for global brand devices is typically above Rmb2,000.
Microsoft has joined forces with HTC, Samsung, Nokia and ZTE to launch new Windows smartphones in China.
Nokia’s Lumia device is set to launch on March 28. A China version of HTC’s Triumph is expected over the next week as well. ZTE said it would launch more Windows phones in China during the first half of this year. Samsung could not be reached for comment.
HTC and Samsung have firmly positioned themselves in the high-end market in China, but ZTE said it expected Windows 7.5 phones to be entry-level products.
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