No iPhone-killer for Microsoft

10 Jan 2008

Rumours that a Microsoft version of the iPhone was being developed have been put to rest as Microsoft chairman Bill Gates told German newspaper Frankfurter Allgemeine Zeitung that the Redmond-based company was not in the market to compete with the popular Apple smartphone.

Gates told the paper that in the “so-called smartphone business” Microsoft concentrates on the software end of things, namely Windows Mobile. As regards physical handsets, he said the company had that taken care of through several mobile manufacturer partnerships with companies such as Motorola and Samsung.

While the iPhone combines the mobile phone with touchscreen technology, internet browsing and a music player, some market analysts had been hoping for a hybrid of Microsoft’s Zune MPS digital media player that would have competed with the iPhone.

However, Microsoft is currently developing Windows Mobile 7 with plans to include technology not even the iPhone can compete with: interaction via gesture.

This is according to Nathan Weinberg, blogger for InsideMicrosoft, who claims he was given a document by a source inside Microsoft detailing how the technology would work.

Examples given include tilting the phone to the left or right to move to the next song or picture while shaking the phone would take it from screensaver mode to active.

This has been a busy week for the Microsoft chairman who gave his last ever keynote speech at the Consumer Electronics Show in Las Vegas before stepping down to concentrate on his philanthropic work.

By Marie Boran