Tuesday, June 29, 2010
Just Who is Windows Phone 7 Targeted At?
Posted by Brad Wasson in "Windows Phone Talk" @ 12:00 PM
Is Microsoft's problem, perhaps, that they reveal too much at times? Or are their strategies actually as incoherent as they sometimes seem? Take the recent announcement of Windows Mobile Enterprise. What do we make of the curious timing of this announcement? Did Microsoft panic about Windows Phone 7 being adopted in the enterprise, or was this planned all along? If planned all along, why not announce this way back in November at the time of the WP7 announcement?
This is what drives people crazy about Microsoft. Did they not plan this out correctly? We see this sort of mystery in many Microsoft areas. Take their Media Center application, which arguably was one of Microsoft's best user interface developments prior to the Zune interface and the revamp of the Xbox 360. It's ability to integrate media from a variety of sources, including TV, in an approachable interface, led one to think that they could integrate this experience across media -centric handhelds, PCs, and media extenders that would ultimately harmonize the experience and tie things together. But poor execution prevails, as witnessed by the differing Media Center experiences for consumers around the world. The emergence of the Zune devices and the Zune Marketplace signalled yet another disjointed development. Mix in Windows Home Server and its potential to integrate and we've got a royal hodgepodge of confusion.
Are we seeing the same thing beginning to play out with Windows Phone 7? Based on last week's announcement we now have to question or at least re-think exactly "who" the first release of Windows Phone 7 is targeted at"? Are they now suggesting that the new platform won't work for any enterprise customers? Probably not, but just who is the target for the first wave? Are they now saying "let's see what happens when we release this, and, by the way, we have a backup plan for enterprise customers if things don't go well"? From my vantage point we're starting to see signs of the historic complexity of Microsoft's strategies. This is not a great development, in my opinion. I'd recommend Microsoft communicate a coherent and considered explanation for this ASAP, rather than leaving us to interpret and imagine where this is all going to end up.
Do you have any insights to this? Please share them with us.