Microsoft invests in companies Cyanogen, developers an alternative version of Android, does not support the store Google Play Store. The transaction will not only strengthen the position of Cyanogen on the market, but also help in the promotion of applications and services Microsoft, reduce the impact of Google’s Android.
The intention IT-giant to invest in startup Cyanogen reports The Wall Street Journal, citing informed sources. Cyanogen is developing its own operating system based on Android, CyanogenMod, is not supported by the app store Google Play.
Microsoft will become a minority shareholder of the investment round Cyanogen, totaling $ 70 million. According to a source publication, this amount may increase significantly, as other strategic investors have already expressed an interest in Cyanogen: Microsoft – is not the only company interested in reducing control over the Google Android. The names of other potential investors are not disclosed.
It should be noted that investment in Cyanogen – not the first attempt to compete with Microsoft Google over Android. In February last year, the company introduced a line of inexpensive Android-smartphone Nokia X. As in the case of CyanogenMod on them was not available app store Google Play, but the user will have the ability to download software from third-party stores, such as “Yandeks.Store.”
However, experts note that investment in Cyanogen – unexpected move for Microsoft, offers its own mobile platform Windows Phone. However, the fact that the market share of mobile operating system from Microsoft is only 3%, may force the company to take unexpected actions.
Android – an open operating system that gadget makers can be installed on their devices free of charge. However, in the past few years, Google has strongly demanded from vendors to upload to the device and its applications to install its default search engine in exchange for access to search, YouTube, and millions of apps in the store Google Play Store.
Because of this, application developers, competing with Google, it became more difficult to distribute their programs on Android-powered devices. For Microsoft, this means, in particular, reducing the popularity of the search engine Bing and other software.
Cyanogen same – an alternative version of Android, free from such restrictions. The company employs just 80 people, however, in their words, in creating an alternative version of Android is helping them as much as 9,000 volunteer developers.
«We will select Android from Google», – said the head of Cyanogen Kurt McMaster last week.
According to McMaster, CyanogenMod are more than 50 million people, most of them set it instead of the original OS your device.
Cyanogen is now discussing with the vendors the ability to set an alternate version of Android on its proprietary devices. The company has already agreed this with the largest Indian manufacturer of smartphones Micromax.
Now we have a situation in which more than 80% of all smartphones sold in the world are produced under the control of Android, says head of mobile and digital devices J’son & amp ; Partners Consulting Eugene Almine. “This device is already pre-installed on the app store, maps, search and other software from Google. Thus, Google gains control of a significant part of the mobile content market and can dictate its terms to developers of mobile applications, “- he says.
Cyanogen can help Microsoft to distribute their applications and services on smartphones, experts say.
Independent version of Android is already very popular, particularly in China, where many products are simply unavailable Google. According to research firm Strategy Analysis, they accounted for 37% of all deliveries of Android in the third quarter of last year.
«Alternative firmware and the App Store for Android is pretty much a no-brainer for Google they are not but CyanogenMod now one of the most popular and Microsoft participation in this project will add ecosystem Cyanogen chance of success “- says CTO Redmadrobot Arthur Sakharov.
Microsoft this transaction will also be helpful, I’m sure he is, if the corporation now has to deduct Google percentage of sales of its services in Google Play, in the case of run Cyanogen App Store it will cease feed a competitor, and indeed would deprive him of a substantial share of the market applications. Naturally, it bothered Google, so it is likely that in the future we will see a real IT-war – for example, the introduction of an exclusive licensing agreements distribution, predicts Sakharov.
Investing in Cyanogen may allow Microsoft to some extent integrate its services, such as search Bing, voice assistant Cortana, cloud storage OneCloud etc., CyanogenMod ecosystem, says Eugene Almine.