(Pocket-lint) - Sony is considering launching a Windows Phone as early as mid-2014, according to The Information. It would add another big name to making Windows Phones and end Sony's long-time focus on only Android.
An official deal hasn't been announced, but both Sony and Microsoft are said to have held a slew of discussions. Sony is said to have gone as far as making a prototype device. Unfortunately, specifications or designs for the device haven't been uncovered as of yet.
It's not clear if Sony will take Microsoft's Windows Phone software at face value, or add custom software on top like it does with Android. Sony's success in the Android smartphone market has steadily been rising, thanks to a focus on Asian and European markets, and leaving US for later. Microsoft surely wants to capitalise on the market share.
Microsoft's buyout of Nokia, the backbone of Windows Phone, in the first part of 2014 apparently hasn't deterred Sony from moving past Android. And it really shouldn't either, as Microsoft has made a commitment to keep licensing Windows Phone to any manufacturer that wants to use it - playing fair and not holding out for just Nokia.
It's not clear when a deal with Microsoft and Sony may be announced, if ever. It could be seen as a healthy move for the Windows Phone market, giving customers choice past the Nokia Lumia line. Besides Sony, The Information reports Microsoft has also held discussions with ZTE to produce low-end Windows Phone devices in the US, China, and Europe.