Chinese smartphone company Xiaomi is teaming up with Microsoft Corp. to offer a suite of Microsoft applications on its Android devices.
Starting in September, Xiaomi’s Mi 5, Mi Max, Mi 4s, Redmi Note 3, and Redmi 3 will come pre-installed with Microsoft Word, Excel, PowerPoint, Outlook and Skype applications, Microsoft said in a Tuesday release.
Microsoft said specific offerings may vary by device, market and operator. A timeline for release of Xiaomi devices in the United States was not provided.
The companies said the agreement builds on their previous partnership to bring Windows 10 to the Mi Pad and Microsoft Azure to the Mi Cloud service.
“We are excited to be working closely with Microsoft on a broad technology collaboration partnership,” Xiaomi senior vice president Xiang Wang said. “As demonstrated by this agreement with Microsoft, Xiaomi is looking to build sustainable, long-term partnerships with global technology leaders, with the ultimate goal of bringing the best user experience to our Mi fans.”
According to Microsoft, the new venture also includes a patent transfer agreement.
Though Microsoft did not give details about the patent transfer agreement, the Wall Street Journal reported Xiaomi has agreed to buy approximately 1,500 patents from Microsoft for an undisclosed amount of money. The patents represent just a fraction of the 60,000 patents held by Microsoft.
Microsoft corporate vice president Jonathan Tinter told the Wall Street Journal the agreement includes patents for wireless communications and video, among other things.
The news comes just two weeks after Microsoft announced the sale of “substantially all” of its feature phone assets to Foxconn subsidiary FIH Mobile Ltd. And HMD Global, Oy for $350 million.
The deal included the transfer of Microsoft’s brands, software and services, care network and other assets, customer contracts and critical supply agreements to the two companies.