Windows Phone 8 home screenDespite some excellent Windows Phone 8 handsets slated for early November, Microsoft is reportedly preparing a smartphone of its own. The Redmond company has given manufacturers ample opportunity to popularize its mobile baby, but the uptake just hasn't been there. So Microsoft is reportedly stepping in to try and get the job done itself.

Just as the company is doing with its Surface tabs, Microsoft is aiming to introduce a device that's unlike anything we've seen, creating an experience that can't be ignored by consumers. Sources at WPCentral claim such a device is actually already in testing, and that its design is something "unique," but didn't elaborate.

More so than the shock of a Surface tab, Microsoft's presence in the smartphone market would surely ruffle some OEM feathers, especially its partnership with Nokia. But that's if a Microsoft-made handset does come to exist.

According to WPCentral, there are a few reasons for such a device to exist, and they all sound very reasonable. First, the company can make it exclusive to its Microsoft Store, allowing the company to forgo carrier meddling and update the device as it sees fit. And second, the device could be used as a contingency plan should Windows Phone 8 fail to take off when it's launched later this month.

Microsoft will obviously be keeping an eye on how Windows Phone 8 devices perform once they're first launched next month. If sales aren't up to snuff, and WP continues to trail well behind iOS and Android, Microsoft might step in and announce something that could turn that all around.

[via WPCentral]