Windows Mobile 7 – Bringing the BSOD to Your Pocket

Microsoft’s new incarnation of Windows Mobile will land on October 11th. With a tile based UI and tight integration with Xbox Live, Windows mobile 7 looks set to take a slightly leftfield approach to going up against Android and IOS.

But will connecting to xbox live and a UI that, in all honesty, already looks dated be enough to make up the miles of ground that Android and IOS have already gained? Along with many other industry watchers, I doubt it, they are just too late to the party and the only way to make up for that is to do something genuinely game changing, something Microsoft haven’t done since windows 3.1.

The more cynical tech press are suggesting that Microsoft aren’t at all confident either, citing the recent lawsuit against Motorola for technology used in it’s android phones. It’s been suggested that this is intended as a none too subtle threat to handset manufacturers to encourage them to ditch android and go Windows Phone.

If you can’t beat ’em sue ’em.

Using strong arm legal tactics to shoehorn a product in to the market is nothing new in the tech industry, but  going that route before the product is even launched suggests a doubt that the product can gain market share on it’s own merits.

Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer had his bonus capped this year to around half the maximum he could have got partly because of the declining share of the mobile phone market, so MS have a lot riding on Windows Phone 7, but it’s hard to see how they will gain market share against IOS and Android.

Iphones – like them or not – are cool, Android was always popular with nerds and techies and is on the verge of making that crucial geek to chic move which will see it become cool too. Cool is not a word often used to describe microsoft, and in cutting edge tech markets it’s and important factor.

People associate Windows with sitting at a desk working, that and blue screens, neither of which are good associations for a mobile phone.

Love it or loathe it, windows as a desktop OS is ubiquitous, everyone knows windows and if you let them off ME and Vista, Microsoft have a good product. So why are they bothering with a phone OS? Why not stick to making desktop OSs? Well the mobile OS market is huge and growing so they would be daft not to get involved. More interesting is the direction that personal computing seems to be taking, with more and more functions traditionally limited to desk and laptops being taken over by mobile phones, tablet devices and cloud services it’s possible that Microsoft’s core market may be on the verge of a dip. And MS must be concerned at the possibility of Google dropping a free desktop OS on the market, this is something google deny but rumours around goobuntu and Chrome OS have been around for years.

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