Microsoft says it has a cunning plan to drop the price of phones based around Windows Mobile 7.
According to Bloomberg, Microsoft expects production costs of handsets using Windows Phone 7 software next year to drop by more than half from when the platform was introduced. The plan is that Microsoft’s mobile operating system phones will be made for less than $200, compared with $400 when the software was released last year.
Andy Lees, head of the Windows Phone division, said in an interview in Hong Kong today the actual retail price will be determined by operators. The first models using the latest version of Windows Phone 7, called Mango, have already been shipped in Japan, with devices to be available in China next year.
He said that volume was Microsoft’s main motivation for helping vendors offer cheaper handsets. Models using Mango to be introduced in the next few months will require as little as $220 to produce, before the cost falls further in 2012, Lees said.