back to article Can Windows Phone 7 gain momentum with all eyes on Apple?

Today will see the long-awaited start of the Apple World Wide Developer Conference (WWDC), and the expected announcement of the fourth iPhone. Amid all the hype that is sure to surround the event and the keynote of CEO Steve Jobs, it will be difficult for Microsoft to gain much attention for its own annual developer event, …


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  1. Piro Silver badge


    I honestly think Windows Phone 7 will be a flop. The trendy, but lacking in customisation/tech appeal market is already taken up by iPhone, and for everyone else, there's Android.

    Symbian and Blackberry will still hold onto their market share in their respective niches, possibly with Symbian slowly dying out on all but the lowest end handsets.

  2. davebarnes

    Not to mention Android

    So, "can Windows...?"



    Microsoft moves too slowly and SteveB is clueless.

  3. Anonymous Coward


    That is all.

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Windows Phone 7

    Microsoft is far too late playing catchup.

    Google is new to the OS game and their Andriod OS is getting more attention than any of Microsoft's mobile OS's.

    If Microsoft wants to beat Google (too late to beat Apple) they will need to have some innovative (another term for ripping off?) tech to make it stand out from the crowd.

    Copying Apple and Google won't cut it. It has to be something new.

    One thing that will be off putting especially for companies that want to develop internal apps for Winfone7 is having to go through Microsoft's version of AppStore to distribute the program.

    Allow developers to transfer the program to the phone and if they want to sell the program then use MS AppStore.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down

    MS are an also ran in the mobile phone business.

    Phone win 7 is a copy of apples walled garden accoridng to the Elreg report on it. Missing more functionality in this release than even basic windows 95.

    To win customers or developers it has to Dazzle, have Substance and Work.

    Nothing MS has done for a while even comes close to getting those three working at the same time on the same platform.

    WIn7 phones will come out and replace win 6.5 by necessity, not design or style. Just like win7 got rid of Vista.

    1. jonathanb Silver badge

      Or maybe not

      I think Windows Phone 7 will replace Windows Mobile 6.5 in the same way that Vista replaced XP. Basically, it won't.

      Their core market is sales to companies that install line of business applications on them for mobile workers. Those apps aren't going to work on Windows Phone 7, and an Apple style app store model isn't really going to work for them.

      I can see Windows Phone being squeezed out by Apple and Blackberry in the general purpose market, and by Android in the customised corporate device market.

  6. Mark Broadhurst
    Jobs Horns

    I don't see why not.

    Android has a growing market in spite all eyes are on apple.

    There is no reason why Windows 7 Mobile can't, except that it wont.

    1. DZ-Jay

      Re: I don't see why not.

      >> "There is no reason why Windows 7 Mobile can't, except that it wont."

      There is one good reason: Steve Ballmer and his clueless inability to "get" the market.


    2. ThomH

      You're not thinking transiently enough

      The timing of the WWDC versus the big reveal of actual Windows Phone 7 specifics will kill the biggest opportunity it has for significant press before launch. That's the Microsoft versus Apple angle. After launch it'll be the iPhone and Android tag team that suffocate it. Want a branded walled garden with major announcement product launches? Go Apple. Just want a really good browser, an app store and don't care beyond that? Whatever manufacturer you pick, they'll probably have gone with Android because it's free and has the momentum.

  7. The Cube

    My windows mobile is a great


    When I don't take a call because I just don't want to talk to the person and then I meet them I can say, "oh, sorry!", hold up the phone and say "Windows mobile", they will then nod in sympathy instead of being offended at me not wanting to talk to them.

    There will always be a use for a steaming pile of Windows in your pocket, SMS you want to pretend you never got perhaps....

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Thumb Up

      You, sir, are a genius

      I need a nice high-quality screenshot of WinMo to display fullscreen on my HTC Hero- most people won't know that it's really Android (and rock solid).

      Does anyone have such a screenshot handy?

      1. Anonymous Coward

        Never had a problem with WinMo 6

        However, WinMo 7 sounded like they took a thousand steps back to the age of PalmOS, Seriously, no cut and paste? Oh god why! I'll avoid that and stick with WinMo 6, thanks.

        Fail. WinMo 7 is just that.

  8. dogged

    I don't know.

    The one thing we've all learned about phones and selling them is this:

    It's the interface, stupid.

    If you don't get the interface absolutely spot-on, you fail. iPhone was radical four years ago, now it's old hat. Android, I'm sad to say, fails on interface and only adjustments such as HTC's SenseUI make it customer-friendly.

    Microsoft needs to learn from the only major mistake it made with Windows Mobile and get that interface absolutely right. The previews given so far look encouraging in this regard but we won't know until there's hardware the interface can succeed or fail on.

    I hope they succeed. If for no other reason than to puncture Steve Jobs' ego, which may otherwise need a nuclear strike before long.

    1. Doug 3
      Paris Hilton

      they still don't have the PalmOS PIM apps beat

      coming from someone who still has people using PalmOS PDA's, I've not seen a smartphone PIM package yet which comes close to the ease-of-use we get from the PalmOS PIM apps.

      Just look at how you use the search field on PalmOS and you'll see what I mean.

      So yes, it is the interface but there's still a void. It is also the performance because a sluggish interface is still not an acceptable interface even if the graphics and layout are nice. It is also the reliability of the whole system. And, to some extent it is the cost. But we've seen with the iPhone how there is still a huge market for high cost devices with high cost service contracts. It amazes me how many kids I see with iPhones and wonder who is paying those ~$100/month phone bills.

      Speaking of phone bills, we all know Microsoft is just fine with subsidizing their products to the tune of billions annually and that might be their way back into the game. Could they, would they be willing to spend billions in subsidies to team with a carrier and sell a phone/service combo costing only $49/month for unlimited data? Microsoft could pull the SMS stuff into their server sphere over the IP network.

      I don't think Microsoft can come back by making a better product. They have never done that but they have used their cash reserves to entice pre-loads and pre-packaging sweetheart deals to buy the market share they need to stay in the games. This is how they will attempt to re-enter the phone segment and not by beating Apple or Google with a better product.

      Paris, because she's all about the marketing.

  9. Stephen Channell
    Jobs Horns


    I’m actually quite pleased with my Windows Mobile 6.1 phone..

    It syncs with outlook, has an OK browser, opens word & excel files, tethers with my PC to share data connection.. but fundamentally.. it is no better than the Windows mobile 2002.

    My next phone will be an Android phone.. probably from HTC (the folks that used to make all the Windows phones)

  10. Psymon
    Gates Halo

    certainly not going to beat apple but...

    They will gain a foothold in the corporate market, purely because of the interoperability with Win7 and Server 2008.

    The underlying kernel technologies are intrinsically compatible with each other, and the modular nature of wp7 allows for highly advanced features of win7 to be incorporated into the mobile device in a "Pick 'n Mix" style by the handset designer.

    Add to this the the .net compatibility which will allow a great deal of porting and and compatibility, and you have for the first time a mobile device that can be seemlessly intergrated into your Active Directory schema.

    None of this will matter to your turtle-neck coffee drinkers or your ringtone blarring hoodies, and I certainly wouldn't expect them to give a jot.

    Your freindly neighbourhood sysadmin though, would be VERY interested in mobile devices that can be managed/configured from group policy and intergrated into exchange without painful and buggy 3rd party software plugins.

    very interested indeed...

  11. MarkOne

    are all eyes REALLY on Apple?

    of course everyone wants to see if they can update their products to compete, but the reality is outside the hardcore iTard crowd everyone has moved on to better android devices

  12. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Protest vote

    Most people buying a Windows Phone 7 phones or Android phones are just protesting against the way Apple do things. It's not because they find the hardware and software attractive or well designed.

    HTC still can't made a nice looking phone, from what I've read their design team are more experienced in designing snowboards than mobile phones.

    "One & Co., a 20-person San Francisco design studio HTC acquired in 2008. One & Co. designers still work on other products like snowboards to keep their ideas fresh."

  13. Quxy

    Yes, it IS the interface...

    Since Android was intended to support vendor interfaces like SenseUI, it's not exactly a failure when it competently does just that. In any case, both user satisfaction surveys and the fact that in the first quarter of 2010 Android's US market share increased by 29 percent, while the iPhone's market share increased by 8 percent, indicate that actual users are quite happy with both Android and iPhone.

  14. blackworx
    Jobs Horns

    You heard it here first

    That comment about the "iPhone rival" for Xbox Live made me think: how long before the next "magical and revolutionary" Apple device is a games console, or some iTunes-encumbered HTPC hybrid of such? Titter ye not!

    If/when they do, the associated hype will make the iPad shenanigans look like a church fete.

  15. mark l 2 Silver badge

    how much will it cost?

    As far as i can see the biggest stumbling block for the uptake of Win phone 7 will be the license cost (well unless M$ are giving it away for free which i highly doubt)

    I can see why a handset manufactuer would want to pay to put an OS on their handset when they can just put Android , Symbian or some other linux on for free . Even if its just $0.50 per handset for a Win Phone 7 license that all adds up when you sell Millions of phones

    Of course you can only get the Iphone OS from apple anyway so the cost of the OS is not an issue for them

  16. Blain Hamon

    But, but, but

    I'm just waiting for the Microsoft Surface to truly take the world by storm!

    Right. Mine's the one with the huge table in the pocket.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    MS catch the Apple?

    Maybe, but I don't think so.

  18. captain veg Silver badge
    Gates Halo

    Free beer

    Apple has a very nice operating system that it gives away to make a hardware sale.

    Google has a passable operating system that it gives away to make advertising sales.

    Microsoft has a dog of an operating system that it expects you to pay for.

    To stay in this market, WP7 has to be massively more compelling than the competition, or Microsoft has to change business model. Bye bye Ballmer. Gates would have understood this.


  19. Tim Bates


    Not sure who that guy from Network World was talking about, but most of the developers of Win Mob software I've heard comment on Windows Phone 7 have basically said Android it is!

    Perhaps those who hock crap games and sleezy video "apps" are rejoicing because of the store... Maybe that's who he was talking about.

    1. dogged


      That's because of having to grab a new (to them) development platform to write for WP7, I expect. On the other hand, any existing .NET developers would find it easy.

      If anything, I'd guess this was a move at keeping existing corporate clients (who are more likely to be MS shops) than gaining Apple/Android's "independent dev" coders but the SDK tools aren't even in Beta yet so really, we have to wait and see.

  20. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    In your dreams MS

    If Apple cant gain on Google with Android what makes MS think they can with Apple. At this point in the game MS should abandon there mobile endeavors and concentrate on there core business "OS's". But then again Google is about to release there OS too, so its been real MS.

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