Has the author checked the sales numbers?
Only last week one story was entitled "Android out-runs Windows Phone 7 on price comparison site" < http://www.theregister.co.uk/2010/11/26/windows_phone_7_sales/ > puts the lie to todays piece which tries to suggest there is even a fight.
Personally i think Google should adopt the PC Windows schema. Updates to the OS can come independently of any other application. The manufacturer's UI is the equivalent of the PC desktop can have it's functions supported by the updated OS until the manufacturer extracts the digit and updates his UI.
Likewise with Cellco's. Since the relationship between the Cellco's and manufacturers is a closer one than Google and the Cellco's, they could co-operate in upgrades. The user should, however, have the option of using the 'no frills' Google OS until the manufacturers/Cellco's get their acts together.
Microsoft has too much baggage to garner a mass of support such as Google has. MS abandoned the users of it's earlier OS, there is a permanent 'hate' in a large number of people for MS - all challenges that require energy to overcome.
Google, on the other hand, is coming up big time in the pad/tablet business with many diverse manufacturers adopting the Android OS. This is an arena MS hasn't even got it's nose in the door.
WP7 challengers are way below Android, MS might have attractions for the suits that carry RIM, but RIM has a solid world market. The world is not North America, there are distinct areas where different OS choices are favoured.
And then there is China. Forget your expensive bling phones, other than in BeiJing or ShangHai, the mass of Chinese citizenry want value for money and that likely doesn't include MS. Android is the OS of choice for the Chinese entrepreneurs - not MS.
Google has a little housekeeping to do, then the question posed by the article's title will be redundant.