Following on from last week's announcement of the Surface tablets, which are "conceived, designed and engineered entirely by Microsoft employees", Informationweek asked Sullivan, a senior marketing manager for Windows Phone, whether Microsoft was planning to apply the same strategy to Windows Phone. The reply was clear and succinct:
"No, we do not."
He went on to add:
"We have a strong ecosystem of partners that we are very satisfied with."
These statements should clear up any suggestion that Microsoft is looking to build its own Windows Phone hardware.
Speculation had begun to mount about Microsoft's intentions around Windows Phone hardware, following the somewhat unexpected news that Microsoft would be creating its own tablet hardware. The rumour flames were fanned by Nomura analyst Rick Sherlund when he issued a research note suggesting that Microsoft had a deal with a contract manufacturer to produce Windows Phone 8 devices.
We hadn't covered these rumour on All About Windows Phone previously, as they always seemed rather unlikely. Building a phone is a different proposition to building a tablet, especially when you consider the level of expertise involved and factor in considerations such as the market context and size, distribution/sales channels and strength of incumbent manufacturers.