By Aimee Chanthadavong

In conjunction with its partners, Microsoft has officially launched its Windows Phone 7 in attempt to strive in the smartphone battle that is currently being dominated by Apple and Google.

Over the next two months from 21 October, five new handsets from HTC, LG and Samsung featuring the new mobile platform will be made available to the Australian market.

Microsoft Australia’s major launch partner Telstra will be offering several personal and business billing options with the Windows Phone 7 on its Next G network.

Kate McKenzie, Telstra chief marketing officer, said the Windows Phone 7 will be the “new force in smartphone technology” and will be the “new challenge in the smartphone market”.

“Windows Phone 7 arrives at a time when Australians are embracing smartphones in record numbers. We think our customers will love the simplicity of Windows Phone 7 as well as its bold visual design.  Combine this with the unmatched speed and coverage of Telstra’s Next G network, and we think Windows Phone 7 is set to be an exciting force in the Australian smartphone market,” she said.

The launch follows the telecommunication company’s recent study, which revealed smartphone ownership is expected to grow to more than half the Australian mobile population within 12 months.