Microsoft Re-Enters Mobile Fight - TheStreet

REDMOND, Wash. (

TheStreet

) --

Microsoft

(MSFT) - Get Report

is expected to announce that it's back in the mobile game next week at the Mobile World Congress tradeshow in Barcelona.

After watching

Apple's

(AAPL) - Get Report

iPhone software and

Google's

(GOOG) - Get Report

Android applications march off with greater portions of its smartphone business, Microsoft will likely showcase its newest operating system -- Windows Mobile 7 -- at the wireless industry event starting Monday.

Analysts expect Microsoft to preview Windows Mobile 7 next week and have it ready by fall. It should be available through phone makers like

HTC

and

LG

.

Trends in mobile phones have favored touchscreen-controlled smartphones and have largely departed from the scroll-through, dropdown menu format that characterized Microsoft's previous operating systems.

It's a new opportunity for Microsoft and one the company can't afford to miss if it expects to play a big role in mobile computing.

Other shops like

Palm

(PALM)

and

Research In Motion

(RIMM)

face a similar challenge in trying to develop popular software that can match the runaway success of the iPhone and Android devices.

Microsoft shares are down 9% so far this year as no-growth tech shops have fallen out of favor with investors.

--Reported by Scott Moritz in New York

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