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Microsoft's Windows Phone Platform Is Dead (windows10update.com) 456

Ammalgam writes: Tom Warren at the Verge today gave voice to what a lot of other technology analysts and today definitively declared that Microsoft's Windows Phone platform is dead. This largely based on the abysmal adoption numbers released in Microsoft's most recent earnings report. Mr. Warren articulates the obvious by stating: "With Lumia sales on the decline and Microsoft's plan to not produce a large amount of handsets, it's clear we're witnessing the end of Windows Phone. Rumors suggest Microsoft is developing a Surface Phone, but it has to make it to the market first. Windows Phone has long been in decline and its app situation is only getting worse. With a lack of hardware, lack of sales, and less than 2 percent market share, it's time to call it: Windows Phone is dead. "

Now this news should not be surprising to anyone who has watched the slow decline of Windows Phone. Last December, in an article on Windows10update.com, Onuora Amobi also wrote off the platform. In this case, his analysis was based on the nonconformity of the Microsoft user interface to Apple and Android's widely adopted aesthetic appeal. He wrote "I believe Windows Phone is dead. Kaput. Finished. Over. Done. ... Windows 10 is successful in part because it's a return to Windows 7 in many ways and that's what made the consumers happy. One of the definitions of insanity is "doing the same thing over and over again but expecting a different result". This is exactly what Microsoft is doing and it's insane. Over 90% of Microsoft's desired audience like the look and feel of iPhones and Android devices. They do – it's not good or bad – it just is what it is. They spend their money on those two user interfaces."

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Microsoft's Windows Phone Platform Is Dead

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  • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 29, 2016 @12:43PM (#51396607)

    You know The Verge?...That's a fucking iVerge!

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Isca ( 550291 )
      I wish I had mod points to vote this up. The Verge may be right, but they are totally apple fanboys who jump at any opportunity to make fun of the competition.

      Microsoft may be able to jumpin at some point though with the bump in surface sales. If they rebranded as surface phone and launched a surface phone that's tied to a plan that is much like Google Fi they could potentially build a market for themselves. Especially if they used the hooks they have in the retail world at best buys and microsoft kiosks
      • The Verge may be right, but they are totally apple fanboys who jump at any opportunity to make fun of the competition.

        I would agree, but Windows Phone is not now nor ever was competition for Apple. The company that is competition for Apple's bread and butter market however, is a totally different story:

        http://phys.org/news/2016-01-g... [phys.org]

        TL;DR: Google (or Alphabet rather) is likely to overtake Apple's overall net worth soon.

        Also to add to that, Apple's massive cash supply has a major problem that's going to take a lot of "financial engineering" to solve:

        http://www.usatoday.com/story/... [usatoday.com]

        TL;DR: Apple has a lot of cash overseas,

        • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Google (or Alphabet rather) is likely to overtake Apple's overall net worth soon.

          LOL No.

          Market cap, maybe.

          But Apple has more than $200B in cash, while giving away about $50B a year in dividends & stock repurchases.

          Apple's massive cash supply has a major problem that's going to take a lot of "financial engineering" to solve:

          LOL.

          Only if they want to spend it in America. But guess where they put lots ($10s of B) of capital into their manufacturing process. I'll give you a hint. It's in the Far East.

          • by unencode200x ( 914144 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @04:50PM (#51398769)
            RTFA. I haven't checked sources, but it to expand, the article claims that even though Apple has a lot of cash, they have a lot of debt too ($53 billion USD). Apple took the debt to fund their stock buybacks/dividends and to avoid taxes (2.1% vs. lots of taxes).

            If Apple brought their cash back to the US and paid their debts that would at least half their cash position. So they're not in bad shape by any means, but it's not as look as it sounds on the face of it.

            Also, iPhone accounts for 2/3's of their revenue according to the article. If that's the case, Apple has said they expect a ~14 percent drop in iPhone sales this quarter. That's a big deal. It actually puts them pretty close to where Microsoft is at.

            Alphabet, on the other hand, went and hired some wall street people, reigned in spending, reorganized and made some smart moves. They're on the rise.

            The most valuable company thing I'm not sure about, I guess it depends how you measure it. Market cap does tend to be what the media and others are talking about when they say "the most valuable company in the world," but we all know there is a lot more to it than that. For example, market cap only represents outstanding stocks and is really all over the place.
            • by rtb61 ( 674572 )

              Right at this moment of time Apple has one huge, really huge marketing advantage of M$. Apple is selling privacy and looking after the privacy of others is cool and sells well. M$ are selling the opposite and complete loss of privacy and that is an impossible sell and the longer they keep it going the worse it will get. From young to old, at a social level, invasion of privacy is loathed, pervert a core word for offensive behaviour, secretly perving on someone, being a perv is considered quite foul, check

        • by LinuxIsGarbage ( 1658307 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @06:24PM (#51399435)

          The Verge may be right, but they are totally apple fanboys who jump at any opportunity to make fun of the competition.

          I would agree, but Windows Phone is not now nor ever was competition for Apple. The company that is competition for Apple's bread and butter market however, is a totally different story:

          http://phys.org/news/2016-01-g... [phys.org]

          As much as people like to dump on Windows Phone, or Blackberry, the shrinking of the smartphone market to only 2 major players is a bad thing. More competition is good in trying to keep all vendors on their feet, and there are certainly things WP and BB do better than iOS or Android.

      • by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:26PM (#51397009) Journal

        There are fanboys of any platform that are always eager to make fun of competitors to their Chosen Idol.... so what exactly was your point there? Can't be due to any sneering by any top dog... currently it's a near-duopoly in the smartphone OS world, and fortunately neither major participant is run by a monopolistic player of dirty pool.

        Microsoft used to have 2-3rd place in North America at best, back before the iPhone and Android came out (#1 was BlackberryOS, #2 was PalmOS). Microsoft *could* have taken advantage of a decent position back then, but they, like Nokia, Palm, and BB, were blindsided by the advent of first the iPhone, then Android.

        Microsoft compounded its error in judgement by dumping time and money into 'Pink', thinking that a Sidekick inspired hardwired-keyboard phone style was eventually going to win out over the rapidly growing Apple/Android phones, who in turn were moving in the opposite direction (that is, Microsoft's competitors were busy as hell trying to cut down the number of hardware buttons, while Microsoft was busy adding more). In the end, the long-delayed Kin phone had no chance.

        To try and make up for the fuckups, They send ol' Elop over to take over a now-ailing Nokia, then slowly drag Nokia into Microsoft's fold. Problem is, they did it about 5 years too late, long after Nokia fell into massive decline. They should have taken over that platform before it caught fire, to borrow Elop's analogy.

        When Microsoft finally got its shit together, it was too little, too late. With a near-deserted app store, a widely-panned mobile UI, and a near-saturated market, Microsoft is in no position to do jack shit in this market... and I think the sooner Nadella gets the memo and pulls out of that mess, the better.

        IMHO, the whole Windows Phone fiasco is prima facie evidence that Microsoft overextended itself. Excepting the still-no-ROI-yet XBox line, they have been patently unable to do anything profitable, let alone successful outside of their existing core competencies: OS, Exchange, Office, Active Directory, and rebranding Logitech peripherals. ...maybe it's time for Microsoft to get back to basics, keep the stuff that actually makes money, dump the rest, then sit down and take a long, hard, vision-related look at where they really need to go in order to thrive (and not decline or remain stale-steady-state) a couple of decades from now?

        • by war4peace ( 1628283 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:35PM (#51397099)

          I'd wager that the vision is there, within Microsoft's employee pool, but got hopelessly stuck in mid-management politics and infighting over whose shit smells better.

        • by JustAnotherOldGuy ( 4145623 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @03:55PM (#51398349)

          There are fanboys of any platform that are always eager to make fun of competitors to their Chosen Idol

          I've often wondered about the motivation for this kind of behavior...is it simply a form of self-reassurance, or bolstering of one's ego to confirm that a given decision (i.e. Android versus Apple) was the "right" decision? Or is it a way to possibly makeup for thinking that one has, in fact, made the "wrong" decision? What's the motivation to take sides and hoot like bands of rival monkeys at a waterhole??

          It's so weird. I own an Android phone, but I don't brag about it. I'm sure an iPhone or Lumia or Brand X would work just as well for me. Conversely, I don't diss people who happen to own a different brand of gadget, vehicle, or clothing than I do. Why would I?

          It just all seems so weird to me, like some kind of abstracted dick-waving or patriotism or something. Why would I care what brand of phone someone uses? Why would I care about them knowing or caring about what brand of phone I use?

          I don't understand it, I really don't.

          • by ComputerGeek01 ( 1182793 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @05:50PM (#51399193)

            I've often wondered about the motivation for this kind of behavior...is it simply a form of self-reassurance, or bolstering of one's ego to confirm that a given decision (i.e. Android versus Apple) was the "right" decision? Or is it a way to possibly makeup for thinking that one has, in fact, made the "wrong" decision? What's the motivation to take sides and hoot like bands of rival monkeys at a waterhole??

            I can't speak for any underlying psychobabble cause; but for some of us it feels more like an expression of our values. For example, I have an iPhone 6 and I support a few dozen of them at my job. I hate these things with the passion of a thousand hells specifically because the business model revolves around sweeping all of the blatantly obvious problems under the rug. The troubleshooting steps for any error you might ever come across for any application on this platform are as follows: 1.) Restart the phone. 2.) Reinstall the application. 3.) Format the phone and reinstall the application 4.) RMA the phone. That's it. If none of those steps work, you will be abandoned by any technical support team out there specifically because they all know that the cause will be some underlying edge case bug that Apple refuses to address or even acknowledge. You want log files? F-U, Apple fanboys don't need no stinkin log files so they don't exist despite Unix being one of the pioneers of this concept. You want an error code? Nope, can't help you there, they don't exist; you're lucky if you're told that a problem occurred at all. You want to roll back to a previous version of a software package where this problem didn't exist? Nope, never going to happen not even diagnostically because I guess no one who ever wrote code for the Apple platform has ever made a mistake.

            As for the animosity toward Apple fanboys? I suppose that it stems from a feeling that they are the ones that are propagating this culture of "There is no problem as long as you ignore the problem until you buy your next device.". It's a bit infuriating to be told by one of them that "You have to stop pretending that you can fix everything.".

      • by jon3k ( 691256 )

        The Verge may be right, but they are totally apple fanboys who jump at any opportunity to make fun of the competition.

        Doesn't make them wrong. Microsoft Phones aren't "dead" because they were never even "alive". They just "never were".

    • by bondsbw ( 888959 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:02PM (#51396769)

      Which is it, the apps or the UI?

      I, anecdotally, do NOT like the iOS UI. Its widgets are hidden away in a drawer, apps' most useful functions tend to be at the top of the screen instead of within thumb reach, and I can't even choose where on my homescreen I want to place an icon. Android UI is generally better and it provides more flexibility, although I wish it were more flexible out-of-the-box and didn't require rooting to do some of the truly nice things. Windows Mobile UI is a mix, where its widgets (tiles) aren't quite as useful but the tradeoff of better resource management makes that acceptable.

      Again, just my opinion, but the UI is absolutely NOT the weak point for Microsoft. Apps are. That should improve if more well-known app vendors port to universal Windows 10 apps, since they would only need to tweak the desktop/tablet UI a bit for phones. MS needs to be much more proactive on getting app developers on board.

      Microsoft has strength in its future ecosystem where apps will run on Xbox, phone, desktop, tablet, tables, HoloLens, IoT, and so on. IF they get that going, it could blow all the others away. Of course that's future and not today, so this strength is only hypothetical and as of this moment they don't get many points here.

      I don't think the Windows phone platform is dead. I think the WP7/8 iterations are dead. 10 has some great potential, but MS needs more innovation in hardware as well as software or that platform will never get to its fullest potential.

      • I would say the Apps combined with market uncertainty.
        Microsoft failure is due to the same factors of its success in the Desktop Market.
        It isn't about technology or design, but the consumers comfort level.

        Apple has the Apps and it is #1 (for any particular hardware brand). There is little worry that next year there won't be the new iPhone and when you upgrade you have your apps.

        Android as Apps also and it is #1 (for overall use of the Operating System). Being it is such a popular brand there is little worr

      • Android UI is generally better and it provides more flexibility, although I wish it were more flexible out-of-the-box and didn't require rooting to do some of the truly nice things.

        If you're using a newer version of Android, you don't need root to do most of those things anymore. Pretty much the only reason I root these days is because Nexus devices, for whatever reason, have the ability to record calls via API disabled, even though AOSP has that capability, so you need root for apps like Boldbeast to use ALSA.

        For adblocking, I just use firefox with adblock installed. Other things (like removing built in apps) is better with Marshmallow, which now moves non-core apps that don't make o

      • Again, just my opinion, but the UI is absolutely NOT the weak point for Microsoft. Apps are.

        I agree with you completely.

      • by amiga3D ( 567632 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @02:03PM (#51397333)

        I don't think the windows phone is dead either. It's on life support and has been since it's inception. Microsoft does have the money to keep it on life support forever if it wishes. They have the money to bleed for years and years until the finally somehow find a way to succeed in the phone market. It's only a matter of whether they have the will. Sony helped the Xbox succeed by repeatedly stabbing themselves in the eye. I suppose microsoft is hoping the same will happen with iOS and Android.

      • by leathered ( 780018 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @02:06PM (#51397347)

        Agreed. The UI is superior to both IOS and Android and really is a joy to use. My employer recently gave me a new Lumia to replace the iPhone 5 they gave me previously. After some initial protests I was really taken by how slick the interface is.

        Apps are the problem. My bank doesn't provide one for WP and a number of others I have used regularly are either unavailable or inferior to their IOS and Android counterparts. It also has an image problem and I think it was a mistake to drop the Nokia branding. Microsoft may have good brand recognition but it is far from a trusted brand.

      • by mattventura ( 1408229 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @03:41PM (#51398215) Homepage

        Microsoft has strength in its future ecosystem where apps will run on Xbox, phone, desktop, tablet, tables, HoloLens, IoT, and so on. IF they get that going, it could blow all the others away. Of course that's future and not today, so this strength is only hypothetical and as of this moment they don't get many points here.

        No, no, no, just no. The whole "homogenize mobile and desktop" line of thought is what gave us garbage like Windows 8. Targeting all devices means you have to follow the lowest common denominator. That, or implement platform-specific code, which is basically what you'd be doing for any cross-platform program to begin with. Programming aside, an app will often (even unintenionally) be designed around one platform, so even if it "works" on other platforms, it's not a particularly good experience. For example, an app designed for mobile might not have proper keyboard shortcuts on the desktop version, or an app designed for a desktop might involve too much typing to be usable on mobile.

    • Yes, Tom Warren, founder of WinRumors.com is an Apple shill.

      No wonder you posted anonymously.

  • by mccalli ( 323026 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @12:44PM (#51396611) Homepage
    Shame - I actually liked the fact it was doing something different and wasn't an iOS clone. Had a chance to play with one very briefly when a friend bought it, and I thought it worked quite well.

    I'm an Apple ecosystem person at the moment, but I'm definitely in for seeing alternatives and I'm also not on the Win10 hate train - I quite like it, and it would be nice to see some of its features well integrated into a mobile platform as well.
    • by Anonymous Coward on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:22PM (#51396971)

      Windows 10 from a user experience might not be too bad, but it's the aggressive data collection that really has people hating Windows 10. Not only bad defaults, but often downright impossible to turn off even when you think you have. Combine that with extremely aggressive attempts to get Win 7/8 users to upgrade. If those things weren't there, I doubt the same level of hate would be.

      • by mccalli ( 323026 )
        Yes, would agree with this. The Cortana thing for instance - I'm comfortable using Siri (from a data collection point of view) but not comfortable using Cortana, purely on the basis of what the companies say they will do with it.
    • It WOULD have been nice. Microsoft's grand-unified platform included some good ideas, and potential for more, which would have benefited everyone. But they were so way way way late to the game. They needed to be pouring out product once Android started to stick, preferably sooner. Instead, their desperate catch-up strategy of leveraging Windows Desktop as a platform to sell Phone (looking at you, Windows 8) only angered the public... forcing live-tiles and "modern" apps on desktop users did NOT make them

      • Their Windows 8 strategy was what killed them. B'cos the first Windows 8 phone that I got - a Lumia 520 - totally transformed my attitude towards instant messaging. Previously, I'd just avoid doing it at all - typing on a numeric keypad was out of the question. But Lumia's typing experience was so fluent & smooth that it totally switched me over right away. At the time, neither iOS nor Android's keyboards were that great.

        Had Microsoft introduced Windows Phone 8 years ago, when Android & Appl

  • by LichtSpektren ( 4201985 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @12:45PM (#51396623)
    Recent news suggests that Microsoft is about to cram their current Windows 10 phones full of bloatware in order to make up for their horrible market share decline. TripAdvisor is going to be the first ad implemented: http://www.pcworld.com/article... [pcworld.com]

    Sucks for those WP fans that tried to be loyal and support their chosen platform, but Microsoft ain't never gonna change from their old ways.
    • by gstoddart ( 321705 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @12:57PM (#51396721) Homepage

      When the bloated shitware OEMs have been putting on machines becomes the bloated shitware shipped by Microsoft ... it's basically a sign that Microsoft is doing such a bad job at getting people to care they have to essentially resort to affiliate programs and paid product placement.

      I'm afraid Microsoft has lost the plot so badly they will never be able to recover ... because for those many of us who simply don't want or need Office, and have noticed that while Apple adds stuff like movie editing software Microsoft is removing Solitaire ... there's not much beyond the OS to run other people's software on that MS brings to the table.

      Except for notepad, Windows Explorer, and Calculator ... there's not a damned piece of Microsoft software which adds value to my home machine.

      If the once biggest software company is reduced to adware, they'd jumped the shark so badly as to be doomed. Because they'll have almost stopped being relevant.

    • TripAdvisor exists on my Android phone, came preloaded and can't be uninstalled.
      So... as usually, Microsoft comes in last even from a bloatware perspective!

    • by DogDude ( 805747 )
      I don't know if coming with a TripAdvisor app is the same as "cram ... full of bloatware". Both your statement and this article seem a bit hyperbolic.
  • Help! (Score:5, Funny)

    by ED-Z Ward ( 2987517 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @12:47PM (#51396639)
    I can't find the "news" in the headline!
    • My thought exactly. Was there some specific event or announcement that just occurred that would indicate that Windows Phone will be killed off soon? Clearly Microsoft didn't announce straight out that they're discontinuing it. Did they just announce sales numbers that show a major decline?

      We (rightfully) do plenty of Microsoft-bashing around here already; do we really need a special article dedicated to it?
  • by danbob999 ( 2490674 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @12:49PM (#51396643)

    Blackberry is dead too.

  • Need to make an X86-64 phone or ARM with full x86-64 VM.

    OR OR at the very least no app store lock in on Windows RT

  • by The-Ixian ( 168184 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @12:57PM (#51396719)

    MS has already stated that they will continue to develop and support Windows Phone OS. This article is just fear mongering. The platform is not going anywhere.

    They really have no other choice anyway. It would be foolish to give up on the platform because it can be used for IoT and tablets as well and it is also allows them to be more agile if things ever change. Not that I see them changing in the short term, but who knows, the pendulum may swing back into MS's favor in time and if it does, they will have the OS and infrastructure ready for it.

    Anyway, I will continue to use a Windows Phone because I like the interface. The lack of apps is not a concern for me.

    In addition, the fact that Windows Phone OS has such a low market share helps ensure its security as well since most malicious software and exploits will be developed for Android and iOS.

    • by LichtSpektren ( 4201985 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:03PM (#51396777)

      MS has already stated that they will continue to develop and support Windows Phone OS. This article is just fear mongering. The platform is not going anywhere.

      They really have no other choice anyway. It would be foolish to give up on the platform because it can be used for IoT and tablets as well and it is also allows them to be more agile if things ever change. Not that I see them changing in the short term, but who knows, the pendulum may swing back into MS's favor in time and if it does, they will have the OS and infrastructure ready for it.

      Anyway, I will continue to use a Windows Phone because I like the interface. The lack of apps is not a concern for me.

      In addition, the fact that Windows Phone OS has such a low market share helps ensure its security as well since most malicious software and exploits will be developed for Android and iOS.

      I bet you loved Windows RT too.

    • It's not like MS has ever had a poorly received product in a crowded marketplace, and just held on til it took off before...

    • by DogDude ( 805747 )
      Same thing here. Like it. Gonna keep using it. MS is still supporting it, and Windows 10 gets rolled out on them in the next few months. Best phone platform, in my opinion. And I agree, MS isn't going to drop it any time soon. It's there and works well, and phones are just fashion for most people. Fashion shifts, and if people get tired of the 1990's era Android and ios interfaces, MS's is already there.
    • by Chris Mattern ( 191822 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:40PM (#51397149)

      MS has already stated that they will continue to develop and support Windows Phone OS.

      And just like the Zune, they'll continue to do so right up until the day they cancel it.

  • My friend works at a Sprint store. They have a small stock of Microsoft phones in the back and no demo units out in front. No one in the last year has ever asked for a Microsoft phone. The employees have no incentives to sell the phone.
    • by DogDude ( 805747 )
      Sprint's a stupid company. I was with them for years, and when my last Windows Phone broke, they had *zero* available, and didn't plan on having any available for months. There must be some real idiots steering that ship.
  • Yup, the Windows phone got Zuned. Shouldn't be a huge surprise, customers are tired of being treated by a cash register by Microsoft, time to be treated like a cash register by Apple and Google instead.
  • by Zorpheus ( 857617 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:05PM (#51396811)
    So it would be sad if they go. It is beating Android on battery life and also has many OS functions that I only find in custom Android roms. For example you can switch off notification sounds and messages individually per app. Also the standard email application in Android is a joke compared to Windows phone email. And it has built-in offline maps that are used in apps too.
    The lack of a few apps is a problem if you need these.
    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by poisonborz ( 2676611 )
      Sorry but all your said features are already there (I can only speak for Android here): you can mute individual apps since 4.4, and while the default mail client usually sucks (note that chances from vendor to vendor) GMail is most often preinstalled and it's superb. Also, if you have a big enough development community, software differences are non-existent - devs will almost always come up with a similar, if not better solution.
      • I could not figure out how to turn off the notification sound of Gmail individually on Android 5.1. And I found no option to show all email accounts in the widget, I have to make a widget for each account. But mayb you can tell me how to do this.
      • by vux984 ( 928602 )

        GMail is most often preinstalled and it's superb.

        No, the GMail app is an unmitigated piece of crap. Last time I used it, I still couldn't even turn off "conversation" threading.

        My wife's got a lumia, and she like it. Her biggest complaint is that all the fun cases she wants aren't made for it.

        I don't care for the Apple style store lock in, but in terms of UI and built in features its pretty good. Apps not being made for it an issue as well, again due to marketshare.

        If MS wants the platform to succeed at this point, I think they'll need to pull a blackberr

  • Not dead. (Score:4, Funny)

    by meeotch ( 524339 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:06PM (#51396817) Homepage

    Clearly, it's just resting.

    (NetCraft confirms it!)

  • Windows Phone? (Score:5, Interesting)

    by ledow ( 319597 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:08PM (#51396843) Homepage

    Was it ever alive?

    I sit next to a box of Lumia's that someone bought for the school I work for before I started. They were only ever used as... well... phones. Nobody ever even tried to log in and use apps on them. And when I started two years ago, they'd not been used in over a year. Recently they were given to me as they'd been "sitting in a box" in someone's office collecting dust, and had been replaced with bog-standard dial-only phones.

    My tech had one when he first started here - but he was 19 and naive. Within days of seeing what a real phone did (and not crashing his on-screen keyboard like his one did all the time), he changed his contracts.

    The only other one I've ever seen was a teacher's at a previous school - who knew nothing about them and bought it because it "had Skype". She never managed to collect her email or anything else reliably and so never used anything that it could do.

    That's out of literally HUNDREDS of adults that I know who come to me with all their tech problems, all the new-starters whose phones I set up with our email etc., all the parents and kids that I see every day about anything even vaguely technical. I must touch several hundred different phones a year, and the majority are almost 50:50 iPhone and Samsung, with the rest being cheap knock-offs and less common brands.

    But Windows phones? Honestly? I've touched more Palm Pilots and Windows CE devices in the last year. And to be honest, they probably worked better and did more.

    (Funniest thing ever was trying to get a WPA key into a WIndows phone where the on screen keyboard crashes, and then trying to modify the key so it didn't use the numbers that you couldn't get to, then finally getting it online and finding out that the "Update" button not only would never fix the problem, but also that it never actually did anything... it would download for over an hour, reboot, and be exactly the same... this was THREE MONTHS after the tech discovered that it was sucking up all his data trying to download the update and his phone company just wrote off the data charges the second he mentioned "Windows phone" because they were so accustomed to it).

    • by DogDude ( 805747 )
      Sounds like that school you work for is managed pretty badly. A pile of perfectly usable assets sitting in a box? You can't figure out a Windows Phone? What school is this??
      • by ledow ( 319597 )

        Not a case of can't figure them out.

        Can't be arsed to use them because of the problems they have (so not perfectly useable at all). Simple shit, like joining to Exchange accounts, is actually not as easy as you think. So they got used as "just phones" until the contracts were up, and then put aside for real "just phones".

        And they were in my office to get sold off because they were of no use. Literally, they were junk. Unfortunately, the school budget is so huge that nobody had the time or inclination to

    • by b0bby ( 201198 )

      My youngest has been using a Lumia 630 for a year or so. It's really not a bad device; I like the the interface, and she hasn't had any issues with it crashing that I'm aware of. For a cheap phone the camera is ok - I got it for $50, unlocked. The only thing against it really is the paucity of apps.

      She's getting an iPhone next, despite me trying to steer her towards an Android.

  • Windows will continue to sell on the desktop as long as they remember to keep it productive. I need Windows so I can get work done. On the other hand, phone interfaces sell the majority of their devices by appealing to the part of the consumer's brain that wants to pull one out at dinner and have their acquaintances ooh and ahh over it. Windows is for getting work done, and smartphones are for getting laid. Two very different requirements.
  • I thought the Windows Phone UI was pretty good. Certainly better than the Android UI, which I never liked. I suppose I consider the iOS UI in between the two.

    I'm guessing the fragmentation of Android devices means I never picked up an Android device and felt that it worked the same as other Android devices. So those differences grated on me. I haven't used WP in a while. but it was pretty easy for me to get to the things I needed quickly.

  • Or as Nokia would have called it, out of the frying pan, into the fire.

  • by Tinsoldier314 ( 3811439 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:14PM (#51396903)
    Not ashamed to admit it. I loved my giant yellow Lumia 1520 and the HTC One isn't so either. I find the Metro UI (whatever it's called these days) to be really pleasant to use. In a way I like being the black sheep of mobile users, my phone solves the problems I need it to solve handily and looks good doing it and it doesn't look like the phones of everyone else.

    Plenty of iOS devices have gone through our household and I resent how there's still a lingering dependency on them because of old iTunes libraries requiring them. I resent the iTunes interface and how poorly designed it is; a miscarriage on a dinner plate is more appealing than that shitty software. It feels like the whole paradigm is a way to fuck over people.

    Android strikes me as a mass consumer oriented product which is probably why it's been so successful. Conformal and uninspiring in every way.

    It'd be a shame if the whole Windows Phone platform just died off. I've always told everyone good things about it.
    • a miscarriage on a dinner plate is more appealing than that shitty software.

      I hereby ban you from ever using figurative imagery in the future.

  • by BitZtream ( 692029 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:15PM (#51396907)

    Do you have any idea how much money just 2% of the US mobile market is?

    2% of the US market is still 6.5 million subscribers.

    If you sell a new one every 2 years at $400/each, thats still almost 3 billion dollars a year in revenue. Drop it to $200/phone and its still 1.3b. In ONLY America. Then theres the rest of the world.

    Just because some moron at some shitty magazine makes an ignorant statement doesn't make it news for nerds any more than Donald Trump talking about tech is news for nerds.

    As far as every number indicates, the business is profitable. Its not an iPhone, but it still makes money. Killing it would be stupid. Selling it might be more profitable, but killing it would just be utterly stupid.

    Did this guy work at GM when they decided to stop selling the only 2 profitable brands they had as well? Idiot.

    • Apparently the AC's here have more of a clue about Microsoft's problems here than you do:

      1) revenue is not profit. You also have to consider marketing costs, production costs, R&D costs, maintenance costs...

      2) Microsoft has been losing money, not rolling in it, from their mobile ventures

      3) the US is not the rest of the word, your extrapolation fails.

      (I'd have modded someone else up instead of restating the obvious, but as I already commented in the story I can't and currently only two non-AC posts with

  • Thank you for selling the long-doomed platform before it was completely driven into the ground.

    Yours, happy Finnish Nokia shareholder since about 2012.

  • Basically, anyone who's ever used a Windows Phone device has known that the platform, from birth, was performing a slow-motion hara kiri.

    It was just a matter of time.

    • by DogDude ( 805747 )
      Either you've never used a Windows Phone, or you have the most bizarre opinions about user interfaces... wait, I'm guessing you're a command-line person, right?
  • Bullshit (Score:3, Interesting)

    by DogDude ( 805747 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:23PM (#51396975) Homepage
    This guy is an idiot. The platform is mature, and arguably, the best out there. Everybody I know who uses one likes theirs, as well. MS isn't going to walk away from this because of current fashion trends.
    • This guy is an idiot. The platform is mature, and arguably, the best out there. Everybody I know who uses one likes theirs, as well. MS isn't going to walk away from this because of current fashion trends.

      You could replace "MS [phone division]" with "Palm Inc", "BlackBerry", "Nokia", "Sega", and a million other companies.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by DogDude ( 805747 )
        But MS is one of the largest companies on the planet. The people running things knows that it's probably just a matter of time, so they're not going to sweat spending some money to keep it alive for now.
    • Windows' growth problem is one of image, not technology. None of my techie friends have bothered to even give it a serious look -- they assume it doesn't have the features they want and leave it at that. And I don't think it's their fault. Microsoft hasn't made it interesting to them, and it certainly doesn't have the allure of the Google name.

      I don't write mobile apps, but as a dev I like to have a good mix of technology so I've bought high-end Android for my tablets and high-end Windows for my phones. Hav

  • It was a valiant effort but we must bid the noble Windows Phone farewell as it joins up with friends Bob and Clippy who high five each other sporting Zune music players.
  • by wjcofkc ( 964165 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:25PM (#51397001)
    It was a slick HTC One8

    One of the things I liked about it was the lack but not total absence of in app advertising. For example, I could play Sonic Dash for hours and rarely see an ad. When I came back to Android, I had to watch a full one minute video ad between each level, unless I paid for it. I no longer play that game. I imagine Microsoft must have paid developers a lot for minimal advertising as a failed tactic to advance their platform and that it would have gone away had the had success. All-in-all it had the apps I needed, but I am not as heavy and demanding a user as most, so that's just me.

    Enter the home screen interface

    While at first I liked that wild and wacky tiled home screen, I recognized right away that the interface would be a major factor in the platforms death (already knew it was dying but I am a very curious nerd so I tried it all the same).

    What did I like about the interface? I'll come back to that. First let me say what I think made it platform suicide among but above most others. If you hand any Android phone running any version of Android stock interface or 3rd party to either any other Android users or iPhone users, they will be able to operate it in a matter of seconds if not instantly through intuition. Likewise, if you hand an iPhone to an Android user, they will be able to use it. If you hand a Windows phone to either an Android or iPhone user, the interface will be so foreign and seemingly archaic, they will not want to learn how to use it let alone take to it like a duck to water. So that's that. Back to my love hate situation with the interface.

    So as I said at first I liked it. I am a full time geek so it didn't take "too" long to figure out. Over the first few days, I methodically laid out the home screen. At first it seemed very efficient and I perceived clear advantages over other platforms. I was excited. Then I started adding more tiles. It started to become a complex puzzle game, finding the most logical places and sizes for tiles. It got to the point where adding one new tile caused me to rethink the logic and efficiency of the entire I layout. I started to think really hard about anything and everything I felt I needed on the home screen, so one evening I went to town. I spent a good two hours re-arranging everything after adding the rest of what I needed and went to sleep. The number of tiles representing apps was be no means excessive. When I woke up the next day I looked at my home screen and I was absolutely and completely fucking lost.

    Nerdy experiment #23,943,284 complete. Back to my Nexus.
  • Um, yeah, no. (Score:5, Insightful)

    by roc97007 ( 608802 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:26PM (#51397013) Journal

    Full disclosure: I'm not a Microsoft fan. Yes, Windows phone sales have been abysmal. We've known this for.... decades, actually. Whatever Microsoft renames or redesigns the phone, it's never done well. Microsoft doesn't appear to "get it" at a fundamental level.

    But, so far, Microsoft continues to pour money into it. And Microsoft still has a lot of money. So realistically, the Windows phone isn't dead until Microsoft says it's dead.

    The "windows phone dead" meme, like "the year of linux on the desktop" meme, is one of those wishful-thinking things that may actually be true someday. But not today.

    • by DogDude ( 805747 )
      Whatever Microsoft renames or redesigns the phone, it's never done well.

      Windows Phone has a well-integrated, consistent, good-looking interface. Android and iOs have a lot of random icons on a page, ala 1995. I don't think that you know what you're talking about.
    • Full disclosure: I'm not a Microsoft fan. Yes, Windows phone sales have been abysmal. We've known this for.... decades, actually. Whatever Microsoft renames or redesigns the phone, it's never done well. Microsoft doesn't appear to "get it" at a fundamental level.

      But, so far, Microsoft continues to pour money into it. And Microsoft still has a lot of money. So realistically, the Windows phone isn't dead until Microsoft says it's dead.

      The "windows phone dead" meme, like "the year of linux on the desktop" meme, is one of those wishful-thinking things that may actually be true someday. But not today.

      They've always had pitiful market share, but it's disintegrating pretty rapidly now. This along with the fact that they're starting to put adware in their phones should indicate that they're probably throwing in the towel now.

  • by WilliamGeorge ( 816305 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @01:35PM (#51397105)

    Its UI is fine - different, but fine. The problem is platform loyalty and being late to the game. iOS and Android were well established before Windows phones hit the market, and if you are already embedded in either platform with many paid apps and familiarity with it then why change? It wasn't a killer deal on price, which could have swung things potentially, and it was *really* late to the party. I argued at the time that they were too late to even bother entering the phone OS market, and instead should have focused on offering versions of their desktop software on the two existing OS platforms.

  • MS just doesn't know how to connect with consumers. They think consumers make purchase decisions like CTOs. When MS tries to be cool, it inevitably backfires. The Xbox division somehow manages to escape all the corporate and branding baggage, maybe someone in Redmond should them how?

    Consumers don't actually like Windows, either; they just accept it... like death and taxes. If MS is going to get their mobile efforts off the ground (after what, 5 tries now?), they need to separate it from the Windows bran

  • by WaffleMonster ( 969671 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @02:28PM (#51397525)

    What is so sad Microsoft has elected to do this to themselves intentionally. The underlying technology is quite good yet like metro UI in Windows 8 some assholes within Microsoft just had to fuck it up with their crappy shells and politics in a continually failing and hopeless bid to emulate the financial success of the crappy apple walled garden.

    One of the reasons I will never use Windows phone aside from crappy 8-bit UI designed by children is it is openly hostile to the end user. Apple style lock down with Google style spying on steroids.

    Even trivial features such as local address books are denied to the end user. Nor can WiFi be used without participating in crowd sourced location spying. If you don't capitulate to untenable demands of the vendor you end up with a worthless brick that doesn't even make a good paper weight.

    If the platform would have remained open without endless calling home that cannot be disabled. If it allowed for reasonable personalization / widgets / replaceable shells rather than take it or leave it metro crap developers and in-turn users would have been all over it. The people who would have supported it early on all bailed after WM.

  • Oh? (Score:4, Funny)

    by Cro Magnon ( 467622 ) on Friday January 29, 2016 @03:02PM (#51397881) Homepage Journal

    Has Netcraft confirmed this?

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