ZTE reveals that Windows Phone license fees are higher than first thought

Portfolio Manager for ZTE UK, Santiago Sierra has revealed to TrustedReviews that the reason Windows Phones manufactured by the Chinese company will be more expensive is due to the licensing fees set by Microsoft, which he placed between £20-25 ($30-40) per license. This amount is more than what was believed, without any official fee being revealed. 

We would like to believe the higher cost of the license is justified by certain features of the operating system - including Xbox LIVE, Office, and more. However, it has always been thought that licensing costs for HTC and Samsung to be between £5-10 ($10-15), but this could be due to production volume number discounts, much like what businesses may receive when purchasing multiple copies of Microsoft Office.

This cost may prevent manufacturers (like ZTE) to pump out low cost smartphones, which can be seen with the Tania pricing (almost on par with generation 1 handsets). Let's not forget that Microsoft collects royalties from manufacturers who build Android handsets, which come to around $15 per device.

Source: TrustedReviews, via: The Verge

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • It could also lead these smaller manufacturers to stick with developing phones with an os that they aren't forced to pay these ridiculous fees from MS.
  • Testing from the updated app. MS should be doing 1 cent licensing for the first couple years as an incentive to the hardware OEMs.
  • This is also an insurance that there will be no litigations or extra patent fee's.
  • I don't think it is that bad. Think about how much other hardware OEMs have to pay employees to reskin andriod. I bet it cost more if not about the same. And like Giddora said you do not have to worry about patent fee's. I don't have facts to back it up, but just my opinion.
  • Hmm..never thought of that. But it makes sense. Customization is not a factor so development is greatly reduced. Good point!
  • word on the street says that Apple's is in the hundreds
  • MS has to go deeper to compete with cheap Android devices.
  • Doesn't this price also cover the testing that microsoft performs on the devices? Since OEMS no longer have to test their handsets, MS does it for them. 
  • How the hell are you going to price that MS taps android OEMs at $15 with absolutely no proof to back that claim up? That's irresponsible and just plain dumb.
  • These poor chinese companies dont even have money to license wp7?