Verizon Wireless is the exclusive carrier for HTC's One (M8) phone for Windows, which went on sale Tuesday for $99 with a contract under a new arrangement in which HTC retrofitted an Android device to accommodate a second operating system. Industry observers suggested the move might test Microsoft's contention that Windows phones don't sell well because they lack access to the top hardware by allowing shoppers to choose between the Android and Windows versions.
Time Warner Cable customers by the end of the summer will be able to access more than 300 live channels on Microsoft's Xbox 360 gaming console. To access the content, cable customers must also have an Xbox Live Gold subscription. The arrangement follows similar deals between Microsoft and Comcast's Xfinity TV and Verizon FiOS.
Microsoft will bring its strong-selling "Age of Empires" video game to the iPhone and Android handsets in a one-time arrangement with Japan's KLab in order to leverage the company's software assets in the mobile arena at a time when gaming consoles have lost sales to wireless devices. Microsoft has released mobile games for iOS and Android but never one as popular as "Age of Empires." KLab said that it will ship a mobile version of the game by March 2014.
Ericsson is reportedly in negotiations with Microsoft to acquire the software giant's Internet Protocol television unit. The acquisition of the MediaRoom unit would help propel Ericsson into a more competitive position in the growing market for IPTV products and services. For its part, Microsoft plans to direct its video software strategy toward delivering more content via its Xbox game console, sources say.
Apple reportedly is negotiating with pay movie channel Epix to show its content on Apple's $99 set-top box. Epix, which is held by Viacom's Paramount Pictures, Lions Gate Entertainment and Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer Studios, has deals with DISH, Microsoft's Xbox 360 and Netflix. Neither Apple nor Epix commented on the possible partnership.