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How Microsoft might win the mobile phone battle after all

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This post was also published in VentureBeat.While there is broad consensus that Microsoft has actually delivered a decent phone OS with Windows Phone 7, pundits are universally panning Windows Phone 7’s future due to the market traction of iPhone and Android, Palm’s HP reset for WebOS, and the reawakening of Nokia and RIM. Mobile is clearly a huge trend that is displacing desktop computing, and people so soon forget that when Microsoft feels its turf is threatened, it is a fierce competitor.

Remember the Xbox

In the late 1990’s, there was a huge race to the living room, with combatants such as Sony making a play to be the digital center of the home. Microsoft felt enormously threatened by this trend, and decided to enter the gaming console business that was dominated by the Sony Playstation. Pundits laughed and claimed that Microsoft would fail enormously in this effort.

However, Microsoft was in it for the long haul and willing to invest enormous amounts of money to ensure success. …