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Since the iPhone debuted in Japan in 2008, SoftBank Mobile Corp. has been heavily promoting Apple smartphones, driving the growth of the telecom giant led by billionaire Masayoshi Son ever higher.

So it seemed odd when Microsoft Corp.’s Japan head Yasuyuki Higuchi and SoftBank Mobile President Ken Miyauchi were seen shaking hands while clutching Windows-based tablet computers at a media event Tuesday where SoftBank was unveiling new products.

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