Microsoft Hopes To Play 'Long Game' In Mobile Market
Microsoft lost the smartphone war. This has been known for years, but the difference now is that they know it, too, and are acting accordingly. The company has gone virtually mute on their own smartphone platform, and is aiming to provide better services on Android and iOS.
Considering the almost certain pointlessness of continuing to throw good money after bad by pushing phones, this is only a smart move economically. However, the company is also hoping to eventually get another shot at it. If they can get enough traction for Windows 10, especially with new developer tools available and in the pipeline, they hope to win over developers to eliminate the 'app gap'. When and if this happens, they can then promote Windows 10 powered smartphones without that problem hanging over them.
They point to their Surface tablets, and the decline of non-productivity tablets, as evidence that the market may eventually decide smartphones aren't standalones but part of a device ecosystem in which interoperability with their desktop or laptop Operating System will be expected and Microsoft's strengths in productivity will incline to their advantage.
To be honest, this sounds like wishful thinking. Users of Windows 10, like Windows 8 before it, haven't proven to have the same appetite for apps as smartphone users, making it difficult to eliminate that app gap entirely, and it seems just as likely that Google and Apple can 'build up' by building less-mobile versions of their mobile Operating Systems (iOS and Android)... as Google has begun to do with the Pixel C... or by porting the ecosystem to their non mobile platforms (Mac and Chrome OS)... of which, again, Google has already taken steps in this direction. It also seems that tablet sales were dented less by Surface or the approach it represented and more by the rise of large smartphones rendering redundant for many people the need to buy a tablet for the same handheld consumption activities as their phone.
Nonetheless, their basic approach is correct: pretending they still had a shot of winning the smartphone war was dragging every other part of the company down with Windows, and it is entirely possible for them to survive and even to thrive somewhat as a major player on competing platforms. In the long-term this probably isn't an ideal solution, and they may need to make a comeback with future platforms and devices, but for now there is no perfect alternative.#Microsoft #Windows10 #WindowsPhone