Microsoft's $7.2 billion bet on buying Nokia's phone business and licensing its patents has the industry's various quarters pondering the effect of Microsoft getting into the hardware phone business and whether it would enable Windows Phone to compete with the likes of Google's Android and Apple's iOS platforms. "This acquisition creates a lot of uncertainty for hardware vendors working with Microsoft," said Canalys analyst Rachel Lashford. The move could negate Microsoft's advantage in engaging phone-makers looking for an alternative to Android and iOS. Some surmised that Microsoft might gain in edge from buyers of basic feature phones, while others continued to express doubt that Windows Phone can attract developers to write applications.

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