Tag Archives: windows mobile 7

Microsoft trying to coax iOS developers over to Windows Phone 7 – Not going to work

Jean-Cristophe Cimetiere, Microsoft’s Senior Technical Evangelist for Interoperability, unveiled the porting tool in a post to the Windows Team blog last week. The tool comes as part of a interoperability package designed to help iOS developers “leverage [their] iPhone development expertise to build Windows Phone 7 applications.”

Microsoft, like RIM, Adobe, and almost everyone else, hasn’t figured out yet that porting tools are not going to cut it in the mobile software space. You need NATIVE apps to compete with iOS, period. And most iOS developers know this. The good ones do, anyway.

So at best, Microsoft stands to gain the worst of the iOS developers; the ones making crap apps, game guides, all the stuff most of us wish Apple wouldn’t approve in the App Store. That sounds like a real recipe for success.

Thoughts on the new Microsoft Windows Phone 7 ads

Microsoft, ostensibly, is trying to break us of this habit and I say ostensibly because, if you really look at the Windows Phone 7 UI, you’re actually dealing with more swipes and taps than you’d expect given the sparse interface they are presenting. Sure, the phones are fast and the UI, at times, is strikingly beautiful, but it’s still a phone and, as such, requires lots of attention.

Many opinions floating around about the new Windows Phone 7 ad campaign. This article from Mobile Crunch is correct in noting that while the new OS from Microsoft isn’t going to actually solve the problem of the “face down culture” Microsoft is smart to target this audience anyway.

Take a look at the market, and you can quickly see that Microsoft’s best shot for success is with first-time smartphone buyers. Apple iPhone users are loyal the extreme, so much so that they stick with crappy service just to keep their precious iPhones. So you’ll never get them. Blackberry users are hard-core business users, and although Microsoft has a strong customer base there as a company, this new OS is largely lacking the security features and overall business appeal necessary for that group. Android users are mostly one year into a two-year contract. (Remember, the explosive growth of Android in the US all happened in the last 12 months.) So it would be financially painful to leave your Android phone, even if you wanted to. So that leaves people who have never had a smartphone before.

And there are lots of people in that situation. Tech geek that I am, I have lots more friends and family members who don’t have a smartphone than have iPhones or Android phones. And while many of those people haven’t taken the plunge to a smartphone mostly because of the financial commitment (something that Windows Phone 7 won’t help), many have also expressed a discontent with the seeming obsession of people like myself with my phone. They don’t want to “become a slave” to their phones. Many of them avoided getting mobile phones in the first place until it became absolutely socially unacceptable not to have one. These are the “late adopters,” the people who get dragged kicking and screaming into the next technological wonders. And they are a big group.

They also won’t care at all about the lack of “cut and paste.”

So while the ads may be largely deceptive in the sense that Windows Mobile 7 will not fundamentally reduce your “face down” time, from a marketing standpoint, this is actually a pretty smart campaign.

Just as the DROID marketing campaign succeeded by appealing only to the relatively small market of supergeeks (much to my surprise and chagrin), these Microsoft ads will specifically appeal only to the much larger group of non-supergeeks. Like everything else Microsoft has done with Windows Phone 7 so far, I think this is a smart tactic.

Microsoft to use Windows Phone 7 event to show off tablets too? Why?

The Redmond, Wash., software giant is set to hold a launch event on Oct. 11 for new devices powered by Windows Phone 7. And while it was presumed that the event would focus on phones, Neowin.net claims that the event in New York City may also be used to introduce new ‘slate PCs’ that will hit the market this year.

“Microsoft has been working closely with several un-named OEMs to produce a genuine answer to the iPad,” the report said. “The software giant is concerned that iPad sales are slowly cannibalizing Windows sales and eating away at the recent boom in netbook sales.”

Next week’s rumored showcase of Windows tablets coincides with what Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said at an event in the U.K. on Tuesday. Speaking to students, staff and journalists at the London School of Economics, Ballmer said consumers can expect to see new, Windows-powered lthis Christmas, according to Reuters.

The report noted that Ballmer declined to say whether the devices would be on sale before Christmas, or who will make the hardware.

Boy, that would be stupid.

Did Apple introduce a new iPhone model when it launched the iPad? No. You know why? Because that would have been stupid.

Windows Phone 7 has enough going against it as it is. It doesn’t need a media blunder to steal any thunder away from the launch event. Microsoft is launching a brand new platform in the most competitive market for any consumer electronics product in history. It is literally three years late in getting back into the game. It’s only managed exclusive deals for its new phones with the weakest of the four major carriers in the US (T-Mobile). Why on earth would they be dumb enough to launch anything else on the same day? Why would they want the press to talk about ANYTHING other than their new phone platform that day?

The goal should be to make every tech news outlet and every major mainstream newspaper and every television news program talk about nothing but Windows Phone 7 for as long as possible. This has to look like the ultimate phone in the universe. The biggest thing since DOS.

Everything I’ve seen about Windows Phone 7 so far actually looks promising. Please tell me Microsoft isn’t going to stumble right out of the gate with a huge media blunder. Tell me Steve Ballmer isn’t that stupid. Someone. Please.

Google Loses Monthly, Yearly Search Market Share

As a result of a new agreement where Bing powers Yahoo searches, Compete is now tracking Bing and Yahoo search queries under the heading “Bing-powered.” Bing-powered searches accounted for 26% of the US search market, with 3.8 million queries.

However, splitting the combined Bing-powered search entity into Bing and Yahoo, it becomes clear that Bing is gaining individual popularity while Yahoo is losing individual popularity. Bing’s 12.4% August 2010 share grew 17% from 10.6% in July 2010 and 37.8% from 9% in August 2009, two months after its June 2009 official launch. Meanwhile, Bing’s query volume grew 20% month-over-month and 45.5% year-over-year.

In contrast, Yahoo’s 13.5% August 2010 share only grew 3% from 13.1% in July 2010 and dropped 12.3% from 15.4% a year earlier. Yahoo’s volume grew 5.9% month-over-month but dropped 7.7% year-over-year.

Google Loses Unique Visitors, Gains Queries per Visitor
Google attracted 154 million unique visitors in August 2010, down 3.1% from 159 million month-over-month and 11% from 173 million year-over-year. Yahoo and Bing both experienced much milder fluctuations in unique visitor.

This is what happens when you take your eye off the ball and start trying to take over every market for every product on earth. You start to lose share in the one area that actually makes you money.

I have no illusions that Bing is going to catch up to Google anytime this century. But any loss of share for Google is bad news.

Notice, when Apple succeeded with the iPod, the iPhone, and then the iPad, Mac share GREW. Apple picks markets that expand the market for all of its products.

Android started off as a way to prevent Microsoft from dominating search on mobile platforms. In that regard, it has been a complete success. But once Google decided to compete with Apple’s iPhone, where it had already solidified a deal for search, Android became a much more risky affair for Google. Now Apple has launched its own ad platform in direct competition with Google, and Bing is an option for iPhone users where it had not been before. Two problems Google would not have had if Schmidt had been content with killing Windows Mobile and Palm and leaving Apple alone.

Some interesting Articles about the Upcoming Windows Mobile | Lukew.com

This guy has written quite a bit about the new Windows Mobile 7 platform. While it would be easy to denounce anything Microsoft is doing in this space, especially considering what Microsoft is up against in terms of competition, I have to say that what I’ve seen so far of this new OS is, if nothing else, very different from what we usually see from the Redmond Giant.

For one thing, it looks like a lot of time and care has gone into this thing from a design standpoint. This isn’t a cheap clone of iOS, the way Windows is a cheap clone of Mac OS, the way Android is a cheap clone of iOS. This is something very different. Still touch-based, still simple and clean (maybe even more simple and clean than iOS), but very different from anything Apple is doing. It even looks almost completely different.

And there’s documentation. Design principles. Human Interface Guidelines. The whole nine yards. They’re putting the hours in over there.

But does it work? Of that, I’m still not sure. I think of projects like Courier that demo very well but upon further inspection make no practical sense, and I worry that what we’ve been shown so far will be better on paper, in short video clips, or at a sales demo than in actual use. Seems like a lot of screen real estate gets wasted; seems like a lot of swiping to off screen content; seems less intuitive to operate for someone who doesn’t know where to tap or swipe.

But I’m going to reserve my real judgement on this one, despite my natural tendency to immediately assume anything Microsoft produces will be crap. The level of thought that appears to have gone into designing this thing suggests that some of the real talent at Microsoft has finally been allowed to float to the top.

All of this could be moot, anyway, if you believe what most people would have you believe, that Android already has the mobile game won by a mile, that even Apple will only have a small percentage of market share in a few years, after the massive Android takeover occurs any minute now.

But you don’t really believe that nonsense, do you?

The way I see it, it’s still a wide open field. Apple will be stuck in a war with the carriers for a while still (many will not want to give up that precious control they love so much, and Steve Jobs is, well Steve Jobs), and that will leave a large chunk of the market up for grabs. Right now, Android is mopping up that market. But for how long? So far they’ve been competing mostly with dead Windows Mobile 6 and non-smart phones. They don’t seem to be fostering long-term loyal customers, the kind of people who stick to one platform for years and years on principle. HP has WebOS, which will most likely go nowhere, but you never know. RIM keeps making the mistake of trying to expand to consumers and is meanwhile ceding ground on the business front to Apple.

Microsoft looks like it’s coming very late to the party with an OS that will likely be under featured on launch. But hey, Apple does that on a regular basis and manages to pull it off, so I wouldn’t write MS out of this story just yet.