Micromax unveiled its first devices powered by the latest Windows 8.1 operating system as the homegrown handset maker charts the next phase of growth to become the country's largest smartphone player.
Ranked number two in India, Micromax has so far sold smartphones based on Google's Android operating system. It is the first domestic original equipment maker (OEM) to launch smartphones powered by Windows 8.1 OS.
The city-based firm introduced Canvas Win W121 and Canvas Win W092 priced at Rs. 9,500 and Rs. 6,500, respectively. Both dual-sim devices will be available from next month.
Besides Nokia, HTC, LG and Dell also have Windows Phone operating system-powered handsets in their portfolio.
Speaking to PTI, Micromax Chairman Sanjay Kapoor said: "It is another step by us to further democratise technology. We want to bring the best of technology to the consumers at the most competitive prices."
Proliferation in data services and cutting-edge devices that make technology affordable for masses will be critical for the next phase of growth and Micromax's partnership with software giant Microsoft for its UI enriching platform and chip maker Qualcomm's next generation processor is an extension of that process, he added.
"Micromax is the only Indian mobile phone brand to be present across the two most popular operating platforms in the world," Kapoor, former CEO of Bharti Airtel, said.
Microsoft India's Chairman Bhaskar Pramanik said both the smartphones will be available not only in India but also in other emerging markets.
Microsoft, which earlier this year completed the acquisition of the handset business of Finnish handset maker Nokia, also has the Lumia range of smartphones in the market that run on Windows Phone OS.
Explaining Microsoft's go-to-market strategy, he said: "Our deep engagement with local OEMs is one of the engines of growth for Windows Phone. With these new devices, Windows Phone is now available to a whole new group of consumers in India, who are looking for innovation and value."
Qualcomm President (India and South Asia) Avneesh Agrawal said the firm is excited to collaborate with Microsoft and Micromax, through the Qualcomm Reference Design Programme by Qualcomm Technologies, to introduce one of the first Windows Phone 8.1 smartphones by an Indian brand.
Snapdragon processors are designed to support integration between hardware, software and services on Windows Phone, he added.
Powered by Snapdragon 200 processor, the Canvas Win W121 sports a 5-inch HD IPS display and has a 1.2 GHz Quad Core CPU, 2,000 mAh battery, 8 megapixel rear camera and 2MP front camera, 1 GB RAM and an internal memory of 8 GB that is expandable up to 32 GB.
Canvas Win W092 has 4-inch IPS display and is supported by a 1500 mAh battery. It is also powered by Snapdragon 200 processor with 1.2 GHz Quad Core CPU, 1 GB RAM and an internal memory of 8 GB. It also sports a 5 MP rear camera with flash and a 0.3 MP front camera.