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Samsung reportedly testing new Windows Phone 8.1 devices

Samsung hasn’t given up on Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform, according to a new report from Korea.

The world’s biggest smartphone maker has all but abandoned the third biggest smartphone platform in recent times. Windows Phone has dwindled far behind iOS and Android in terms of market share, and only Nokia (now Microsoft itself) has continued to support the OS with fresh hardware in any major way.

But that may not always be the case. According to the Korea Times, Samsung is considering launching some cheaper smartphones running on Windows Phone 8.1.

Indeed, one official directly involved in the project claims that Samsung has run pilot programs to test the stability of the Windows Phone 8.1 OS on the company’s hardware. The company is said to be “interested in promoting Windows mobiles.”

Why would Samsung still be interested in an OS that appears to have been cut adrift (even Microsoft is moving on to other things with Windows 10)?

It’s that age old problem for Samsung – its over reliance on Google. Samsung might make the most popular phones around (combined, at least), but they’re all powered by Android.

Because of this undue (if you’re Samsung) influence, it would be in Samsung’s interest to promote a little healthy competition from a software rival – no matter how far behind it might be.

Of course, there’s one big stumbling block in the way of a renewed partnership between Samsung and Microsoft. The two are at loggerheads in the courts.

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Microsoft is suing Samsung for late royalty payments relating to the Android platform, while Samsung continues to petition the Chinese and Korean anti-trust authorities with regards to Microsoft’s acquisition of Nokia.

Should these legal issues be settled, then it seems as if Samsung will start making Windows Phone hardware once again.

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