According to unconfirmed reports, Windows Phone 7 "Tango" powered handsets could appear on the Chinese market as early as March 2012.
But rather than tasting the full version of Tango, Chinese customers are expected to get a customised, "lite" version of the operating system.
According to Chinese website WPDang (via The Verge), the localised version of Tango will exclude many popular services and features such as Xbox Live, Twitter and Facebook to adhere to strict local guidelines.
Likewise, Bing, the default search engine in all Windows Phones, is said to be replaced by Baidu - the most commonly used search engine in China.
A number of smartphone manufacturers including Nokia, ZTE, HTC and LG are expected to launch Tango-based handsets in the second quarter of 2012.
Microsoft has yet to provide details regarding requirements for handset upgrades. The upgrade path from the original Windows Phone 7 to Mango was smooth because the base hardware (a single core Qualcomm-based SoC, a camera, 512MB memory and 4GB onboard storage) remained the same.
We expect Microsoft to make make a number of mobile related announcements - other than the launch of Windows 8 Consumer Preview - at the forthcoming Mobile World congress in Barcelona end of the month.