Engadget reports about recent rumors that popped up lately, regarding Microsoft Windows Phone operating system becoming free for some companies - so they will be able to compete with Android devices. Two Indian manufacturers, which are part of the new Windows Phone partners, said they are getting Windows Phone 8 at no charge.
According to reports in The Times of India, Indian phone makers Lava and Karbonn manufactured Android phones for Google, Inc., which allowed them to use Android at no charge. The Times' sources learned that Microsoft negotiated with the two phone makers last year, and finalized the deal when it agreed to waive the OS licensing fee.
Microsoft did not do the same with Nokia, the company of which phone business it is in the process of buying. In 2011, Nokia said it will stop manufacturing for Symbian and make Windows Phone only.
According to reports, Nokia pays about $20 to $30 per device for the Windows Phone license. In the case of Lava and Karbonn, they score a major victory, and the waiving of the OS license can be a contributing factor in selling the devices in greater numbers.
Microsoft has not given word yet, regarding its plans to lower, or entirely drop the license fees for original equipment manufacturers (OEMs).
Software license fees are one of the main revenue sources of software companies, but other firms use it as part of a marketing or promotional campaign to have their products become more appealing, and increase sales.
IDC predicts that the market share of Windows Phone will grow to 3.9 percent at the end of this year.