Yesterday, Microsoft announced that Windows and Windows Phone will now be free of charge for phones and tablets with screens smaller than 9 inches. Well, all Windows Phone devices so far have been smaller that 9 inches. In effect, Windows Phone OS is now free for use by OEMs. This is similar to what obtains with Android OS.
However, note that even Android OS licencees still have to pay Microsoft certain royalties, it might just be that it has just become cheaper and easier for OEMs to use Windows Phone than Android. But whether or not that is so, we are sure to be seeing a new level of low-cost Windows Phone smartphones soon.
With the recent improvements in the availability of Windows Phone apps and the new licence-free OS, if we do not see new hardware manufacturers adopt Windows Phone, then nothing short of an apocalypse will probably bring them on board.
Universal Apps Too
In a related development, universal apps that work on both Windows and Windows Phone. This is a good step in unifying both PCs and mobile platforms.