Lenovo Agrees To Install Microsoft Bloatware On Its Android Smartphones

In the smartphone market, Microsoft has to fight for scraps leftover from Android and iOS, and comparatively there aren't many to go around. Rather than bury its head in denial, Microsoft's been making mobile versions of its key programs like Office available on other OSes, and now Lenovo has agreed to pre-load several of Microsoft's productivity apps on some of its Android handsets.

Microsoft Office, OneDrive, and Skype are among the apps that will come pre-installed on select Lenovo devices in what the two companies are calling a "deepening of their strategic relationship." The benefit for Microsoft is clear, though as for what Lenovo gets out of the deal, terms of the arrangement were not announced. Lenovo is undoubtedly receiving some kind of financial incentive—whether it's a lump sum payment or royalty on Microsoft app subscriptions originating from its handsets (or a combination of both) isn't publicly known.

Lenovo Vibe

"Microsoft's thrilled that our productivity apps will be pre-installed on Lenovo's premium devices," said Nick Parker, corporate vice president OEM Division, Microsoft. "The marriage of Microsoft's apps and Lenovo's Android-based devices will enable customers around the world to be more productive, more connected and achieve even more."

Lenovo also pitched the partnership as a benefit to customers.

"Our collaboration with Microsoft will create new opportunities for our customers to take advantage of some of Microsoft's most popular apps," said Christian Eigen, Leader of Corporate Alliances, Lenovo. "Installing Microsoft apps and services on our devices will bring additional value to consumers around the globe."

Not everyone will see it that way. Those who don't have an interest or need in Microsoft's productivity apps will view this as more bloatware that take up precious storage space. Sometimes pre-loaded applications can be uninstalled from smartphones, though that's not always the case.