It's no secret that Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 operating
system has gotten
off to a slow start. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has said that the
smartphone operating system came
to market about a year too late; hence it's facing stiff competition from
seasoned competitors like Apple's iOS and Google's Android.
Currently, Windows Phone 7 is treading water with a 1.6
percent share in the global smartphone sector during Q1 2011 according to Gartner.
To say that Windows Phone 7 isn't adding much to Microsoft's bottom line would
be putting it mildy at this point; at least not until its partnership
with Nokia kicks into full gear.
Keeping this information in mind, a Citi analyst reports
that HTC is currently paying Microsoft $5 for every smartphone that it sells
running Google's Android OS. The payments are a result of a patent settlement
that Microsoft reached with HTC.
Horace Dediu of asymco took
things a step further and reckons that HTC has shipped around 30 million
Android-based smartphones. With royalty payments of $5 per device going to
Microsoft, the boys from Redmond have received around $150 million thanks to
sales of Android smartphones.
Microsoft claims that it has sold two million Windows Phone
7 licenses -- Dediu estimates $15 per license -- which would bring revenues
from its latest smartphone operating system to $30 million. If these numbers
are accurate, Microsoft is currently receiving five times as much money from
Android than it is from its own smartphone OS.
As Ballmer stated
back in March 2010, there are plenty of costs involved for manufacturers
when it comes to putting Android OS on smartphones. "There's nothing free about
Android," said Ballmer. "I mean at the end of the day as we
certainly have asserted in a number of cases you know there's an intellectual
property royalty due on that."
And HTC is just the beginning when it comes to royalty
Business Insider -- Microsoft is
looking for as much as $12.50 per device from other Android phone makers.