When Microsoft becomes the soul of a Google machine


Windows has dominated the clamshell smartphone market for decades. Android, on the other hand, has dominated the smartphone market for only about four years with lower market share in tablets. These days, however, if you’re looking at a new device powered by a Google or Microsoft operating system, there’s a chance that you may think you’re seeing double. Increasingly, Microsoft is putting Windows on devices that are essentially identical to their Android or Chrome counterparts, sometimes even bearing the same device name. These doppelgängers — while still relatively uncommon — are emerging in categories where Google is strong.

We saw evidence of this a few months ago when HTC’s One M8 reemerged running Windows Phone in place of Android, which it was running when it launched. HP followed suit with the launch of the colorful $200 Steam 11 laptop, which — apart from color options —  looks almost identical to…

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