One analyst cites "industry checks" in predicting the launch of a Microsoft-backed and -branded handset in February or March.
Not one to be left in the cold, could Microsoft be readying a flagship phone of its own?
"Our recent industry checks indicate Microsoft will be debuting its own phone sometime in the next two months,” Jeffries and Company analyst Lisa Egbert wrote in a note to clients. “We expect the new phone to debut soon, at either the Feb 15-18 Mobile World Congress conference in Barcelona Spain, or possibly at CTIA in Las Vegas one month later.”
The note, pointed out by All Things Digital's John Paczkowski, said to expect a "Zune-like" phone that incorporates 720p video playback, a five megapixel camera, and some brand of music store. Also, expect the phone to grow from a partnership similar to the one that produced the Nexus One – where HTC manufactured it to Google's specs, and with Google branding. But we're guessing – and we're ready to be proven wrong – that the device won't hang onto the less-than-successful branding of its personal media-player cousin, the Zune HD.