The leaked photos of two Microsoft branded phones has injected life into the “Project Pink” rumors that have floated around for so long. The Pink phones were rumored to be similar to the Sidekick phones produced by Danger, a company acquired by Microsoft a few years back. These new photos show concept phones that are pretty much ready for release. They may be concepts but they sure look like they are ready to go.
The phones are reported to be produced by Sharp for Microsoft and will be co-branded by both companies. Sharp makes the hardware for the Sidekicks, so this makes sense. If this is true, and Microsoft is indeed going into the phone hardware business, then statements they’ve made in the past indicate they’ve learned how to manipulate the media much like their BFFs at Apple.
This comment was made by Microsoft back in April of this year, when the Pink rumors were running rampant:
“1) Microsoft is not going into the phone hardware business
2) Microsoft is not building a Zune-specific phone
3) We’re deepening our relationships with our hardware partners in order to create even better performing phones that are competitively priced, have the features people want, that are easy-to-use and just downright lustworthy. The upcoming availability of Windows Mobile 6.5 software will enable our OEM partners to build even more compelling devices in a wide-range of form factors for customers around the world.”
So if the Pink phones do get released as is now widely expected, it would seem Microsoft has learned how to skirt the issues. Its previous statement about “not going into the phone hardware business” would now seem to be carefully crafted. If you think about it, the comments don’t actually say there won’t be a “Microsoft phone;” only that Micrsoft won’t go into the phone hardware business. Enter Sharp, which is expected to be actually making the hardware for the Microsoft/Sharp phones. It would appear that the folks at Redmond are getting pretty darn crafty with their public statements. We’ll soon know, anyway.