The Mobile World Congress (MWC) kicks off two weeks from today, and for sure there will be no shortage of new phones announced at the big show. A Spanish blog is claiming that Microsoft (s msft) will be showing the mythical Zune phone at the MWC. A Zune phone has been rumored for as long as I can remember, and Microsoft has previously said “no way” to producing one. But the Spanish blog is claiming that a Zune phone announcement is “100 percent confirmed.”
A Zune phone makes perfect sense for Microsoft to compete with the iPhone. The new Zune players have a user interface that is top-notch and far better than anything that has appeared on the company’s Windows Mobile side. Microsoft is of course keeping mum about what they may be announcing at the MWC, although it’s widely expected that the next big version of Windows Mobile — version 7 — should make an appearance. A Zune phone would sure shake things up in the smartphone world and this geek would love to see one show up at MWC.
The rumored Zune phone is said to be using the Nvidia (s nvda) Tegra chipset, which handles advanced graphics on mobile devices. How advanced? Just take a look at the video we shot of the Tegra at the CES. We saw firsthand that the Tegra chipset can handle very intense graphics without missing a beat.
It is an interesting dilemma should Microsoft produce a Zune phone. Its entire Windows Mobile business model is predicated on providing the platform for business partners to exploit to advantage. Should the company decide to produce its own Zune phone, the business model may get shaken. That same observation could be made about the Google (s goog) Nexus One phone.