Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) will have to justify why it is launching two separate mobile-phone projects after it presents the much-rumored “Project Pink” devices next week to a crowd of journalists.
The software giant invited the media to an event on Monday in San Francisco, which sources tell Reuters is designed to announce two mobile phones that will be sold by Verizon Wireless. The phones, which are reportedly based on the Sidekick software that Microsoft acquired from Danger, will focus heavily on social networking and other Microsoft services, like Zune. The code names for the devices have been Turtle and Pure.
If the phones do not run a version Windows Phone 7, which is coming out later this year, Microsoft will have to explain how it intends on supporting a two-pronged strategy that could result in consumer and developer confusion. The market is already extremely fragmented with several different operating systems, so there has to be good reason why it makes sense for two software platforms to come from one player.
In leaked photos, the phones look a bit like a Palm (NSDQ: PALM) Pre in that it has a slide out keyboard and a large touchscreen display. The devices are likely to be made by Sharp, which makes Microsoft’s Sidekick.