Microsoft to integrate Skype, Office with Cyanogen's version of Android

Microsoft's mobile apps will be integrated into a future version of Cyanogen's Android-based operating system, as CEO Satya Nadella steps up efforts to make the company's software more popular on Google's platform.

Cyanogen and Microsoft announced a partnership on Thursday that will result in Bing search, Skype, OneDrive, OneNote, Outlook and Microsoft Office becoming part of the Cyanogen OS, which uses a heavily modified version of the Android interface.

Exactly what this will look like remains to be seen, but Microsoft said it will create "native integrations" with Cyanogen's operating system. That hints at integration that goes beyond pre-installed apps and well-placed icons.

Microsoft has been stepping up its efforts to improve the applications the company offers on Android and get them installed on as many devices as possible. Last month, Microsoft announced an expanded partnership with Samsung Electronics, for example. Its apps will be pre-installed on Samsung's tablets and smartphones.

The effort is very much part of CEO Satya Nadella's plan to move the company's whole range of applications beyond Windows and onto other OSes, all kinds of devices and into data centers.

Cyanogen OS is pitched as a more flexible version of Google's OS. This week Cyanogen released version 12 of its OS, which is based on Android Lollipop and is even more customizable than previous iterations.

The OS is used on smartphones such as the OnePlus One, Alcatel OneTouch's Hero 2+ and the Yureka from Yu (which is owned by Indian smartphone maker Micromax).

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