Microsoft's press conference held at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2014 has proven once again that the Redmond-based company has big plans for the Windows Phone platform.Shortly after confirming that the Windows Phone 8.1 will arrive in spring with lots of new features and improvements, Microsoft announced new hardware partners for the mobile operating system, Engadget reports.
The OEMs confirmed to launch Windows Phone handsets this year are mostly Indian and Chinese, which suggests that Microsoft is now focusing on emerging markets where Nokia's low- and mid-range smartphones have been very popular.
Thus, Microsoft has announced that it has now partnered with Karbonn, Lava Mobiles, XOLO, Gionee, Foxconn and Lenovo.
Aside from that, some handset makers that have already launched one or more Windows Phone devices reiterated their support for Microsoft's mobile platform including LG, Samsung, HTC, Huawei and ZTE.
On a side note, LG has confirmed that Windows Phone fans should not expect any handsets powered by Microsoft's mobile operating system coming from the South Korean company.
It appears that for the time being, there are no Windows Phone handsets included in LG's roadmap for 2014, but we might see another WP-based device in early 2015.
Microsoft's VP Nick Parker has stated that his company is now open to any partner that wishes to launch Windows Phone handsets.
In addition, Parker has confirmed that Microsoft is now working with network operators to bring more carrier-branded Windows Phone devices that are made by other manufacturers.
Furthermore, Microsoft has also announced that it will build Windows Phone handsets using Qualcomm's Reference Design, which is also used to manufacture Android smartphones.
We suspect that these will not be the only companies that will launch Windows Phone handsets this year, as Microsoft continues to lower the financial requirements for those who wish to release smartphones powered by its mobile platform.
More handset makers are expected to add to the roster of Windows Phone manufacturers in the coming months, so stay tuned for more updates on the matter.