The spotlight will be on Android next week during the Mobile World Congress trade show in Barcelona, where LG, Samsung, Sony, Huawei, Acer and other phone makers are expected to reveal the latest and, in some cases, the greatest smartphones yet. Meanwhile, Microsoft’s Windows Phone operating system won’t make an appearance on any new handsets, Re/Code said Tuesday.
That’s particularly scary since Nokia is holding its own press conference. Right now it seems pretty clear that the company will reveal its Nokia X Android smartphone, but we had some expectation that a new Windows Phone device – even if it wasn’t a flagship – would make an appearance. Re/Code said it has learned that neither Nokia nor any of Microsoft’s other Windows Phone partners have any plans to show off new devices or Windows Phone software. Instead, those will all be saved for Microsoft’s BUILD developer conference in early April.
The lack of Windows Phone devices at the show could be a good thing. Microsoft’s mobile operating system has grown stale and hasn’t seen a major update in more than a year. Any new devices – save for the recently introduced Lumia Icon on Verizon – should also run new software. Microsoft will likely discuss all of the new features coming in Windows Phone 8.1 during BUILD – which is why it will make more sense to have OEMs on hand there.
Still, with the press focused purely on Android next week, Windows Phone will mostly be set on the back burner for at least another two months. Microsoft probably can’t afford that kind of time if it wants the sort of spotlight Android has gained over the years, and we hope it starts kicking new software and hardware releases into full gear following its conference in April.