Hacker News new | past | comments | ask | show | jobs | submit login
Microsoft Looking To Put Windows Phone On Android Devices, Starting With HTC (techcrunch.com)
30 points by diminish on Oct 4, 2013 | hide | past | web | favorite | 44 comments

Even if I am an Android long time user I would love to have an easy way to experiment with two OS on the same device. I'll be then able to end up using the one I like the most. Competition is great.

Of course they mean release the same hardware with Windows pre-installed.

Would be funny if Google developed something like UEFI if mobile opened up to multiple operating systems.

Funny or not, it would be awesome if phones could boot multiple OS as easily as a plain PC/Intel Mac

not sure why drivebyacct2 is dead, but his comment was useful

> UEFI+SecureBoot can be implemented on ARM devices. And already is in almost every case, it just isn't turned on except for, as an example, most Verizon/ATT variants of phones.

drivebyacct2 has been dead for a long time, but he frequently makes insightful and informative comments.

can't the mods fix this? makes no sense

UEFI is actually requirement for WP8.

I'm pretty certain if they would've name it Banana Phone or xPhone or AnythingButWindows Phone, their market share would be much better than what it is now.

Windows Phone 7 came out grabbing the tail of the disaster that was Windows Mobile 6.1 did not do them any marketing good.

I'm not so sure a dual OS booting phone will be a mainstream success.

If you're familiar with the what happened between Be Inc. and Microsoft back in the 90s, this is pretty hilarious.

(Be wanted OEMs to sell computers that dual-booted Windows 95 and BeOS. Microsoft retaliated by cutting off those manufacturers from the normal OEM discount on Windows licenses.)

Does Google sell Android OS and of course any retaliation on HTC by Google would start Anti-trust, as happened in the case of Microsoft

Unless I'm mistaken, WP8 phones have UEFI Secure Boot too, and it can't be turned off like on desktop systems.

So now that Microsoft wants more market share, suddenly dual-booting phones is okay, but I doubt they'll lift the secure boot restriction on their own devices.

This could be critical if they make any headway in enterprise. Look at it this way: if MS figures out the "Killer App" for enterprise phones, they can easily have an IT department do a migration of their Android-based phones to WinPhone8.

Why doesn't Microsoft just fork Android like Amazon did, give it a Metro interface (it could look exactly the same as WP does today)? I can't think of any reason for them not to do this now...

Because Microsoft thinks the Windows internals have value both to developers and, more importantly, to Microsoft's own engineers who are better at doing engineering on Windows. They can deliver features that stand out.

IF they just stuck metro on android, they'd just be a UI skin.

That would be great if Android would be a far better OS than WP8 which comparing the performance/hardware requirement ratio on both OSs doesn't seem to be the case.

> I can't think of any reason for them not to do this now...

Besides the fact that it would be a total rewrite?

A rewrite of a failing product shouldn't be an issue.

Except that Windows Phone is currently doing very well in some regions. For instance, in the largest European economies they currently have 10% of the smartphone sales. And quarter over quarter growth is good. It's only a small chunk of the pie, but numbers that start to matter. For reference, the share of the iPhone in these economies is currently around 16%.


That's irrelevant. Microsoft can survive on incremental gains but their hardware partners cannot; that's why they're abandoning the platform. HTC's Windows Phone have been disasters, that's the reason they are pushing this dual-boot strategy. Otherwise they'll lose all hardware partners and only have the remnants of Nokia to run themselves (far from a sure thing).

That's irrelevant.

How is rapid growth and significant marketshare 'irrelevant'?

Even if other vendors put Windows Phone on the back burner, Nokia phones are the most popular by far (according to most surveys 80% of the Windows Phones sold are Nokia phones). If they continue Nokia's tradition of good hardware at low prices, that can drive sales, while the ecosystem grows.

Also, it's not as if HTC is making big profits with Android. They'll probably want to spread their bets.

they are doing so well they are going for the dual boot scheme, how does MS kool aid taste ? Windows Phones are a disaster, that cost Ballmer his job.

"they are doing so well they are going for the dual boot scheme"

Apple Mac were doing well when they decided to dual boot with Windows. It is just a fact that Android is dominating so giving an option to boot to the dominating OS would let them to increase the installed base.

>"how does MS kool aid taste ?" I am not the OC but why you have to be that rude?

>"Windows Phones are a disaster, that cost Ballmer his job." I use the three OSs and WP8 is by far my favourite, it is very hard for me to see that as a disaster.

the coda on WP is not written yet, IPhone 5C gave a massive lease of life by not coming up with a true budget friendly alternative.

The guys at Netscape would love to speak to you for a minute.

Because then they can't control the toolset like they do currently. Or anything else, really.

Because a fork with a metro skin on top isn't Windows?

Microsoft existed long before Windows, if they make Windows a perpetual requirement it will be their ultimate downfall.

Because Android isn't necessarily a great OS to fork from. In my experience, the cheap, low powered Windows Phone devices work much, much better than the cheap Android ones.

>I can't think of any reason for them not to do this now...

The insufferable propaganda that would ensue, plus a lot of Windows customers making an inconvenient conclusion.

Infinite loops - they'd have to pay themselves royalties...then it gets messy and confusing...

Seems like a smart move to me. Windows Phone is irrelevant to most consumers despite years of advertising by Microsoft. People just don't have a compelling reason to use it over more popular alternatives. If they can try it out risk free perhaps some will stick with it. Kind of a long shot move but at this point they are running out of options.

There's enough interesting IP out there for running Android apps on other OSes that I could see MS adding that as a subsystem on WinPhone, but it looks like this is more about dual-boot. I find dual booting a phone to be silly, but could see the draw in having an Android VM for app use in WinPhone.

This seems like a total waste of time. The biggest problem for Windows Phone is the ecosystem. The OS is good and the hardware (Lumias) is good. They have phones in stores and with most carriers. Installing WP on more devices isn't going to solve the problem.

There's always a fundamental demand/supply problem. People won't buy a WP device until there are more apps. Devs won't make WP apps until there are more users. This is an interesting attempt at shortcutting that.

Of course, now that Nokia is assimilated, the Borg needs to move on to the next target.

This would be great for me as a user. I am not a big fan of the android UX but they got the apps I want. So I can use Windows phone for day to day use and only when I want the app that windows doesn't have I can go to android. Of course having to boot would suck but maybe that can be made faster.

I am having a hard time imagining what functionality you are missing in Android that Windows is providing? Not trying to defend either one of both, just being curious.

As a user of both I like the experience on WP8 way better. I don't know about OC but I would be missing Xbox music, Office, Skydrive, Live Tiles and People Hub. Here in Canada there are not really an alternative to Xbox Music (Nokia music maybe), Google Docs doesn't provide the same experience as Office and between DropBox and Skydrive I prefer the last one.

Out of curiosity, does Google Music not work in Canada?

Quickoffice (the app) also ain't too bad. But I don't know how well it compares to WP8 Office.

No, Google Music is not in Canada yet. QuickOffice is not bad but Office is so well integrated with the OS and Skydrive that makes me like it better.

You are right - I was forgetting about Office. Has this really the full functional office capabilities, especially Excel and PowerPoint?

rdio works in Canada... Though the App for Windows 7.5 sucks so I have accounts for both and use XBox music on my phone.

Microsoft wants your phone to be a PC , then the embrace - extend - extinguish walk will be on, with all the dirty tricks,racketeering and blackmailing MS can do like it did for over 2 decades with it's OEM 'partner'.

And MS wonders why it has such a bad reputation now.


Applications are open for YC Summer 2019

Guidelines | FAQ | Support | API | Security | Lists | Bookmarklet | Legal | Apply to YC | Contact