Microsoft registers microsoft-sony.com, new Windows Phones?

By Tom Warren, on 15th Jul 11 11:02 am with 42 Comments

Microsoft’s recent domain registration history has sparked speculation that the company might be planning a partnership with Sony.

The software giant has registered microsoft-sony.com and sony-microsoft.com. Both domains were registered to Microsoft through Corporation Service Company (CSC), a corporate identity protection firm. Forum users at Neogaf discovered the domain names, both of which simply forward to a Bing search result. A great deal of speculation focuses on a gaming partnership between the two firms but it’s likely that the move to register the domains was simply a typical domain protection process. The company has previously registered microsoftinsider.com to protect its brand.

Microsoft could also be planning some type of Windows Phone partnership with Sony Ericsson. A number of images of prototype Sony Ericsson Windows Phone 7 devices emerged earlier this year. Microsoft originally named Sony Ericsson as a launch partner when it first unveiled Windows Phone 7 at Mobile World Congress in 2010. At the time of writing, Sony Ericsson has yet to announce any plans for a Windows Phone device. It has since been reported that the pair could not reach an agreement around Microsoft’s Xbox LIVE integration.

Sony Ericsson had originally planned to launch a 4″ screen device featuring a QWERTY slide-out keyboard. The project was subsequently scrapped but recent rumors suggest that Sony Ericsson may be planning a Windows Phone 7 device later this year. The leaked device, featured below, could hint at Sony’s possible form factor for a future Windows Phone device. Sony Ericsson is a join venture between Sony’s main consumer electronics company and the Swedish telecommunications company Ericsson.

Update: Microsoft’s corporate vice president of Corporate Communications, Frank Shaw, has confirmed that the registration was a “defensive domain hold.”

Sony Ericsson Windows Phone 7 device concept

  • Steve Jobs

    More Windows Phones! Sony is good quality!

  • http://www.facebook.com/crazyTauron Alessio Pinna

    WP7, Touchscreen and qwerty… This is my dream…

    • http://twitter.com/jubbing Jubbin Grewal

      You know LG already has a qwery wp7 phone. And Dell has a keyboard if that’s what you prefer.

    • Anonymous

      The problem with the Dell phone is that you have to buy it from Dell.  Unless you have a Dell store local you cannot even put your hands on it.  It looks nice but I would not buy it without being able to try it.

    • http://twitter.com/jubbing Jubbin Grewal

      I believe Microsoft Store’s sell them as well, but I’m not 100% on this.

    • Ast

      Hey, you can get a Dell Venue Pro 16GB unlocked for $300 on dell’s official website.

    • Asdf

      Hey, you can get a Dell Venue Pro 16GB unlocked for $300 on dell’s official website.

    • Asdf

      Hey, you can get a Dell Venue Pro 16GB unlocked for $300 on dell’s official website.

    • sa

      Hey, you can get a Dell Venue Pro 16GB unlocked for $300 on dell’s official website.

    • sa

      Hey, you can get a Dell Venue Pro 16GB unlocked for $300 on dell’s official website.

  • http://www.winrumors.com Tom W

    Lots of new Windows Phones coming with Mango. Would make sense for Sony to enter the game at this stage alongside Nokia and the new Fujitsu and Samsung devices.

    • GP007

      I agree, the timing is also good because Sony sells most of it’s phones in it’s home market of Japan, and as we all know Mango brings asian language support etc.   It fits.

    • http://123kinect.com/ Clemens

      That’s what she said ;)

    • Anonymous

      Barely.

    • Anonymous

      I really hope you’re right Tom, but after SE posted their dismal Q2 performance, I’m guessing they’re going to be pussies and stay on Android for a bit longer.

    • Anonymous

      I like your wording.

    • Anonymous

      It makes commercial sense though…

    • T D

      But why wouldn’t Microsoft announce the partnership (again)? They also kinda scrapped Dell from the list of OEMs.

    • captn3x

      I would guess like Rovia with Angry birds, they would like a joint announcement or to just announce it themselves.  Announcements and Press confrences equal free advertising. 

    • captn3x

      I would guess like Rovia with Angry birds, they would like a joint announcement or to just announce it themselves.  Announcements and Press confrences equal free advertising. 

    • Guest

      “They also kinda scrapped Dell from the list of OEMs.”

      Or Dell scrapped themselves. They did a terrible job wit the Venue anyway.

    • http://123kinect.com/ Clemens

      Tom, Frank X. Shaw gives an update on Twitter (lead corporate communications for microsoft) https://twitter.com/#!/fxshaw/status/91953278027440128

  • BigGuest

    Microsoft is taking over :)

  • http://adamhaider.com Adam Haider

    Do we really need physical keyboards anymore? The Windows Phone on-screen keyboard works flawlessly. Last I checked, WP7 doesn’t even support landscape typing in most applications. Will this be fixed in Mango?

    • T D

      Every OS menu in mango supports landscape now, except for the homescreen. It’s kinda annoying though, because it makes using the phone in bed a bit harder (still no OS level orientation lock).

    • CandidCalum

      No, not every menu supports landscape. Unfortunately, even in Mango there are still a fair few inconsistencies in terms of landscape mode: http://pocketnow.com/windows-phone/windows-phone-75-mango-landscape-support-video

    • captn3x

        I will always have a keyboard and my roommate went from a non-keyboard to an Arrive. He claims he will never go back. In my opinion the really thin phones are like the really small cameras, without a wrist strap they get dropped. I found I am far more accurate if I can feel the button bump under my thumbs. For short SMS I use the virtual keyboard but for longer emails I use the slide out. If the Arrive was on Verizon I would have left Android.

  • Anonymous

    Breaking news: Microsoft will stop collaborating with HP and Dell. Forum members found that there are no domains like microsoft-hp.com or dell-microsoft.net were registered. This may be the beginning of end of the PC era.

    Seriously! This may be enterprise related stuff to save energy, improve work conditions at factories or help Japan families after the earthquake. 

  • Anonymous

    I dont think the domains are about WP

    As the article says in the end, Sony is not Sony Ericsson, and they always make clear that the 2 are not the same thing

  • http://twitter.com/Chassit Kane Gao

    Of course this is not the case. What we are about to witness are Xstation 720 and Playbox 4, honest. ;-)

  • http://www.facebook.com/soundtweaker Dan Menapace

    Who needs a keyboard when Mango supports speech to text.

  • Anonymous

    Perhaps we will finally see XBP or XBM? As in Xbox portable or mobile?

  • http://twitter.com/WinPhoneJunkies WinPhoneJunkies

    It can’t be just phones.  They didn’t buy a htc-microsoft.com  microsoft-htc.com domain did they?  Or LG, Dell, etc…

  • http://www.timacheson.com/ Tim Acheson

    Microsoft software + Sony hardware = win!

    Sony already makes some of the best Windows 7 laptops and netbooks on the market. They look good and they perform brilliantly.

    I’m hoping this revelation means more to come, perhaps even in phones and gaming.

    Sony Ericsson has been bitten on the arse by adopting the Android mobile OS. And now Oracle and Microsoft are catching-up with Google for using their intellectual property without permission. In fact, Android is really just a repackaged Java virtual machine, and Java is owned by Oracle. It’s been a shambles, leaving many dissatisfied customers, myself included:

    http://www.timacheson.com/Blog/2010/jul/android_review

  • Anonymous

    Do you all really think Sony, the makers of the PlayStation 3, owners of the PlayStation network, would release a phone with XBOX Live games? 
    This would be akin to Apple releasing and iPhone with Zune instead of iTunes….not gonna happen:)

    • http://twitter.com/oolong2 oolong2

      Sure they would.  In fact it was clear from some concepts that were leaked last year that they were already thinking about it

      Microsoft puts Bing services and apps on all devices (iPhone, Android, Blackberry, etc) despite the fact that the companies may compete in other areas.

      This is no different than Sony.  Games is entirely different from the division that makes phones.  Sony will create WP7 phones if they see a market for it.   Just like Sony isn’t going to suddenly stop making Vaio laptops because XBox sales are doing well.

  • Anonymous

    “defensive domain hold” sounded like a killer signature move.

  • Nimbus

    My university worked on a project with Microsoft getting marketing strategy ideas on taking back the college laptop market from Apple.  They were trying to figure out ways of promoting Sony VAIOs + Windows 7 to incoming college freshman. 

  • http://www.philwebservices.com/ domain name registration

    Sonny is good but windows is better

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_L47EGRUIJEAZEBEXX6NY6B3ENY Republican 2012

      that spelled sony dufest learn how to spell or even better go back to school finish your diploma.

  • Rony

    windows Phone 7 on xperia arc……..im buyin!!!!

  • Rony

    windows Phone 7 on xperia arc……..im buyin!!!!