Does Microsoft Have What it Takes for Todays Mobile World?

Does Microsoft have what it takes to compete in the new mobile universe? Everyone is watching Microsoft as they attempt to push their new mobile platform to a dominant market share. The smallest mistake gets amplified quickly.

Since Microsoft launched Windows Phone 7, they’ve been fighting an uphill batter to gain mindshare among the consumer market and prove that they are a force to be reckoned with. But the truth may not be there just yet. Back at the launch, Joe Belfiore promised that an update would be release for Windows Phone 7 in early 2011 that would bring Copy & Paste to the platform. Then a couple months later at CES, Steve Ballmer committed to the Copy & Paste update being released at some point in Q1. Then on February 21st, Microsoft released a pre-update update. This was designed to prepare the device for future updates that would be pushed out. This update was suppose to be delivered on a “rolling schedule” although nobody seems to know what that schedule is.

MobileJaw-WindowsPhoneUpdate

(Image Curtsey of ZDnet)

And here we sit, two and a half weeks after the pre-update was to be released, and still a great number of devices have yet to received this update. The update itself doesn’t mean much, but the fact that a large number of devices have yet to receive this update is speaking volumes with the community.

Microsoft needs to move quickly and pump out the updates driving their platform forward and adding features at a crazy rate. It’s something I’ve said since the day Windows Phone 7 launched, and all eye’s are watching. Sadly, that’s just not what the public is seeing. It’s been just over 5 months since launch and the public has yet to see updates rolled out in any sort of mass release. And what makes it worse, is that Microsoft hasn’t managed to provide any communication to the public. All the community knows is that the update started to go out back on February 21st and that it hasn’t hit them yet – not a good feeling.

While Microsoft struggles to get these two updates out and prove that they are moving quick in this new mobile world, Apple manages to release 5 updates since the end of October. Does anyone else think that’s just a coincidence? I sure don’t. To me, it looks like Apple is doing all they can to keep the updates flowing and keep the consumers thinking about the iPhone.

Today is a prime example of how Microsoft is stumbling out of the gate. Apple announced the latest update v4.3 to their iOS a week and a half after Microsoft announce the pre-update update was going live. Today, Apple made that update available, and earlier this evening I was already able to upgrade my device. Announced after Microsoft’s availability and rolled out / installed before Microsoft gets the update to me. Shines a pretty big light on the sad state of affairs at Microsoft. There’s no doubt that they have the knowledge to get things done, but they are certainly lacking the drive and openness in communication to drive excitement and build customer loyalty.

I hope Microsoft is paying attention and can see that they are losing it in the publics eye. Of course, that’s only half the battle. They would then need to pull up their socks and get things moving out the door at a breakneck speed. As it stands now, there should be 2 updates heading to my device before the end of the month. Based on the success of the first update, I don’t expect much before the middle of April. :-(

About Mike Temporale

Mike Temporale has written 614 posts on Mobile Jaw..

Mike Temporale grew up fascinated by computers since an early age. His first hands on with a computer came when he was 7 years old and a travelling lab of Commodore PET computers made a stop at his school. Hooked on the new world these devices offered, he took any chance possible to get in front of a computer. When Compaq launched the iPaq 3600, he was hooked again. This time on a whole new world of mobile computing. Today, Mike spends his day helping clients deploy and manage their mobile device around the world. From installing custom software, to locking and securing data, and everything in between. He is also the Editor in Chief at Mobile Jaw - a site focused on today's mobile world.

  • http://www.winetag.com.br bnlf

    Great article. This is exactly the feeling of us all. I still think its a great device and will have a nice future.

  • Linley Meslier

    Sad that Microsoft still does not get it. I hope they get back on track quickly.

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  • Dave Evans

    As time goes on I think this looks more and more like a soft launch. Microsoft obviously knew long before we did that the Nokia deal was going to happen, but launched WP7 before they really wanted to because they knew they couldn’t wait any longer for the Nokia deal to mature and just launched it with a half-assed effort till Nokia was ready to go….that or I’m just making poor excuses for them. ;)

    Dave

    • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

      I don’t know about that… Maybe, but I think that’s pretty unlikely. I recall Stephen Elop saying something about the decision being made about 1 day before the announcement. And he didn’t take over at Nokia until September. By then, Microsoft would have been too far along the release path to change much.

      • Dave Evans

        So you’re saying I’m making poor excuses for them then…..;)

        Dave

        • http://www.MobileJaw.com Mike Temporale

          LOL – I think you’re part right. They had to release something. There was no way to get everything into version 1, so things got cut and in the end it might not have been as complete an experience as everyone would have liked. However, it would have been worse for Microsoft to hold back for another 6 months.

          The problem now is that they haven’t been able to execute on the pre-update or the NoDo update. With todays market, if you tell the public something, you better be able to deliver on it or the public will lose faith and trust in you. Hopefully they can get things running smoothly soon.

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