Lenovo To Start Preloading Microsoft’s Applications On Its Devices

Microsoft is a giant. And giants have a tendency to subdue other not-so-giant giants.

Sometimes by aggressive buying and at other times, by “strategic alliances”.

Microsoft, unbeknownst to many, has been steadily roping in Android OEMs to get them to preload its suite of productivity apps on their devices.

The latest company to join this list is Lenovo which has entered into a “strategic relationship” with the Redmond based company to include its productivity apps, including Microsoft Office, OneDrive, and Skype, on its selected devices.

Lenovo is not the first company that has entered into such a “strategic relationship” with Microsoft. Samsung, Xiaomi, Asus, Dell, and many other Android OEMs are already a part of such a strategic partnership with the Redmond Company.

Microsoft’s thrilled that our productivity apps will be pre-installed on Lenovo’s premium devices”, said Nick Parker, Corporate Vice President, OEM Division, Microsoft. “The marriage of Microsoft’s apps and Lenovo’s Android-based devices will enable customers around the world to be more productive, more connected and achieve even more”.

Christian Eigen, leader of Corporate Alliances at Lenovo, said deeper collaboration with Microsoft will create opportunities for customers to take advantage of some of Microsoft’s most popular apps. “Installing Microsoft apps and services on our devices will bring additional value to consumers around the globe”, he said.

In case it was not already obvious to you, Microsoft is using its patent portfolio to get these companies to enter such agreements. In turn, the company is likely reducing or completely waiving off the royalty fees that it gets from the sales of such Apps on each Android device.

Of course, the Apps could be very useful for those plugged into Microsoft’s ecosystem. For others, however, the apps coming with Lenovo phones could be a little frustrating, especially if they end up on Moto devices.

Phones like the Moto Z and Moto X have long been loved because of their near stock Android experience, and while it’s certainly possible that the apps can be deleted, less is very often more for many users.

Microsoft has been struggling in mobile over the past few years, and it seems as though the company has gotten better at offering services on operating systems like iOS and Android than it is at offering a decent mobile operating system.

According to Fortune magazine, “Microsoft needs all the licensing deals it can get. Microsoft makes a lot of money from Android, thanks to its patents being used in Google’s operating system. That income has recently been faltering due to a fall in shipments of smartphones whose manufacturers have struck licensing deals with Microsoft.
 The companies’ app arrangement is notable, but it’s really the continuing expansion of Microsoft’s licensing program that’s the big deal here. Microsoft’s most recent quarterly results showed a 27% year-on-year drop “due to a decline in license revenue per unit and licensed units.

Given that Microsoft was estimated to be pulling in USD 2 billion a year from these deals a few years back, that’s a lot of money going out the window. And it’s probably because Chinese manufacturers such as Huawei, Oppo and Vivo, who are riding high in the smartphone charts right now, don’t have Microsoft licensing deals.

Lenovo’s stature in the mobile market is shaky, having recently experienced a 33% decline in sales — again, thanks to those other rising stars in China. However, it could still bounce back, and is therefore an important win for Microsoft.

As we see it, if these Apps are not unremovable from the devices, then they aren’t really bloatware — a lot of these apps are genuinely useful and if the devices are going to be used as productivity machines, then having such apps preloaded is really a benefit — one that folks would actually end up utilising. So, overall, its a good move and a win-win for


Originally published at Chip-Monks.