The Economic Times of India reports that Microsoft aims to boost its market share in the region by releasing a new generation of 4G handsets that support all the various flavours of LTE in the region.
The handsets will support both existing 4G bands — TDD using 2300 Mhz and FDD — which will be used by Airtel and Reliance Jio Infocomm. Vodafone India and Idea Cellular are also expected to launch FDD-LTE 4G services over the next few months.
Currently only the Lumia 638 supports both bands, while the LTE in 7 recently activated older handsets only support one band, FDDLTE on 1800 Mhz, offered by Airtel in some areas.
“We will soon roll out the LTE version of Lumia 640XL. All of our future 4G devices will support all types of 4G services in India,” Ajey Mehta, country manager, Microsoft Mobile Devices said, adding that the company is preparing to bring the new devices to the market by Diwali, which is November 11th 2015.
Besides new LTE handsets, Microsoft also hopes Windows 10 Mobile will boost their market share, as well as a range of new services.
At present Microsoft’s smartphones hold 3.2% market share in Q2 2015, down from 4.1% last year, according to Counterpoint Research.
Tarun Pathak, senior analyst at Counterpoint, said Microsoft will need a robust device launch strategy which shouldn’t be specific to OS differentiation alone but also control the other variables in the ecosystem too.
“In entry to mid-level smartphone segment, it will try to position itself as an alternative to Android by providing a differentiated experience, but then in reality it won’t be just competing with Android but with various vendors offering stock and forked Android experience, including the likes of Motorola, Xiaomi and Cyanogen,” he said.
Microsoft has been finding good traction in the enterprise segment, and Microsoft’s Mehta expected the new features of Windows 10 Mobile will help Microsoft better serve the needs of their enterprise customers.
At present the only new Windows 10 handsets leaked so far has been the high end Cityman and Talkman devices, and it is not yet known if more affordable Windows 10 Mobile handsets for emerging markets are on the way from Microsoft, though other OEMs such as Acer and Blu have already shown of their own lower-end Windows 10 phones.