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Is Microsoft working on a Surface-branded smartphone?

By VentureBeat.com,

If you want something done right, do it yourself.

That seems to be the mantra of Microsoft, which may be working on a Surface-branded smartphone, sources tell WPCentral and BGR.

Microsoft, it seems, isn’t content with leaving the fate of Windows Phone 8 in the hands of its hardware partners.

But while the move would allow Microsoft to exact an Apple-level vicegrip over its smartphone vision, the creation of a Surface smartphone is almost guaranteed to anger Microsoft’s Windows Phone hardware partners.

And this isn’t idle speculation, either. As the announcement of the Surface tablet showed, companies like Acer weren’t  crazy about Microsoft jumping from software into hardware. And it’s likely that a Surface smartphone would have the same effect on Windows Phone smartphone makers like Samsung and LG.

But the biggest pain would likely be inflicted on Nokia, which is making a big bet on its upcoming Lumia smartphones. Practically on its last legs financially, Nokia is having a hard enough time working with Microsoft, so just imagine if the companies suddenly became hardware competitors.

The important details of the purported device — design, hardware specs, launch times — are still missing, but it’s very unlikely that Microsoft plans to interfere with the first batch of Windows Phone 8 devices. That means don’t expect a Surface phone until the first half of next year.

Copyright 2012, VentureBeat

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