With the market for tablet computers and smartphones growing at an exponential rate, Microsoft (NASDAQ:MSFT) has seen its share of the consumer computing market fall from 95 percent to 20 percent in the past eight years. However, separate reports published by Bloomberg and Digitimes indicate that Microsoft is seeking a partner to reverse its fortunes and take on Apple (NASDAQ:AAPL) and Google (NASDAQ:GOOG).
According to Bloomberg, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer has been developing a close relationship with HTC’s (HTCKF.PK) Peter Chou in hopes of staging a comeback. At a meeting between the two executives in February, Ballmer enjoined HTC to “go big” on using Windows Phone, reported the publication. The company needs a successful device to avoid being shut out of the smartphone market completely; Microsoft has only a 2.6 percent share in the 718-million-unit smartphone market.
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The Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer could benefit from a closer business relationship as well. HTC, which forecast its lowest sales figures in 11 quarters in October because of increasing competition with Samsung (SSNLF.PK), holds a 5.5 percent share of the Android phone market. In comparison, Samsung has a 41 percent share. But with the introduction of its new Windows-based phones last month, HTC’s monthly revenue has increased.