Thursday, January 12, 2012

Will Windows Phones Be Successful in 2012?

Recently, there has been a lot of talk concerning the lack of success of Windows phones; however, according to Greg Sullivan, senior product manager for Windows Phone 7, things are not over for Windows phones. Sullivan said that 2012 should prove to be a great year for the phone line.

At CES the HTC Titan II and the Nokia Lumia 900 were debuted featuring Microsoft’s platform. It seems that Sullivan feels that these are just two of the many great Windows phones that will help get Microsoft’s numbers back on track.

"We're seeing great hardware from all our partners. AT&T is clearly very excited and is putting a lot behind the platform. It's not just a piece of software that got thrown over the transom to succeed or fail," Sullivan said.

Although Windows Phone seems to be having some success with AT&T, that does not mean that the other major U.S. carriers are just as excited about it. Earlier at CES, executives at Sprint were expressing their concerns about the sales numbers for Windows phones.

"We have a Windows device in our lineup, but honestly, it hasn't done well enough for us to jump back into the fire. We told Microsoft: You guys have to go build the enthusiasm for the product. We'll train our reps on why it's great...[but] the number-one reason the product was returned was the user experience," said VP of Sprint’s product realization David Owen.

Lois Fagan, director of product development for Sprint, also commented, "We want to participate in the market, but we can't build that brand by ourself. We're cautiously optimistic, but [Windows Phone] just hasn't taken off."

Sullivan responded to these remarks saying, “That's something that our Sprint team and the folks back in Redmond can work on. We're working closely with carriers to help show how Windows Phone can meet their needs across an array of slots."

Sullivan also made sure to back the statements that Nokia CEO Stephen Elop had made concerning the false rumors about Microsoft buying Nokia’s smartphone business.

"It would make it more difficult for us to have as thriving a third-party hardware ecosystem if we were directly competing with them," he said. "I think that's a challenge Google is going to face with the Motorola mobile acquisition."

Sullivan believes that there is plenty of time for Microsoft to catch up with other phone operating systems.

"This is like the PC market in the early to mid-80s. If you were going to declare a victor then, what would it have been? CP/M? Apple II? I think declaring the smartphone space locked up and done is like declaring CP/M the victor in the early '80s."

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