Microsoft named four hardware partners for Windows Phone 8 devices — Nokia, Samsung, Huawei, and HTC — and surprisingly, Huawei just became the first partner to tell us when to expect a Windows Phone 8 smartphone in the United States. "2012 is building up to be a great year for Huawei. Now, we are poised to end the year with a big bang – with the introduction of our first smartphone running on the Windows Phone platform," said the company in a press release (bolding ours).

While Huawei typically builds devices primarily for its home market, the OEM also says that won't be the case this time around, as the so-called "Huawei Ascend with Windows Phone 8" is slated to arrive in Europe, China and the US first, before it spreads to other territories. We had a chance to review Huawei's first high-end smartphone in the US recently, the Huawei Ascend P1, and we think the company could be a contender in the space. That's why we're looking forward to see what the OEM can do with Microsoft's mobile OS.