Microsoft has unleashed its weapon in the fight against Apple’s smartphone market dominance with the unveiling of the Windows Phone 8.
Amid thunderous partner applause, the phone was demoed live to the vendor’s 16,000 global partners at the World Partner Conference in Toronto today.
Labelled as fully business ready, the platform allows users to control the look and feel of the interface and personalise their tiles by changing size and position to whatever suits their needs.
Thom Gruhler, head of marketing for Windows Phone, said: “We have an unbelievable amount of momentum and Windows Phone 8 will be truly the most modern smartphone platform anywhere.”
The phone will have a shared core with Windows 8 operating system allowing users to make the most of Office or Bing or Skype and other Microsoft applications, he explained.
Although he admitted the firm had some work to do to win customer hearts and minds. “Smartphone users don’t really know about the Windows phone and we are committed to building customer demand. We are off to a great start,” he said. The business ready aspect of the phone will ensure it appeals to business users as well, he insisted.
“We want to make Windows Phone great for you and your customers,” he said. “As well as integration with Exchange and Lync, Windows Phone 8 also provides customers with an enterprise grade security platform which will make it ideal for financial sectors, government and healthcare customers for example."
Gruhler said other benefits of the phone is that is no longer requires customers to publish their apps through the Microsoft Marketplace, which gives partners with more private customers the chance to develop apps that remain private.
“Windows Phone 8 will be a truly local platform,” Gruhler explained. “It will be released in 50 languages – that is 25 more than Apple, and the Marketplace covers 180 countries.
“We have taken time to make the Windows Phone 8 a central part of the Windows strategy for Microsoft partners and we are looking forward to working with you all.”
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