Microsoft does indeed have their own Windows Phone in the works or maybe they don’t. If so, I’m reminded of the old Peanuts cartoons where Lucy holds the football for Charlie Brown to kick and then always moves the football before he can. One would have to wonder how desperate OEMs would have to be to keep playing ball with Microsoft.
On Sept. 5, Nokia and Microsoft announced a new smartphone, the Lumia 920, calling it the "flagship" device for the Windows Phone platform.
On Sept. 19 HTC and Microsoft announced a new smartphone, the Windows Phone 8x, calling it the "signature" device for the Windows Phone platform.
There seems to be a messaging problem here.
A lot of members of the tech press who attended both Nokia and HTC’s events this month were left scratching their heads today. How can Microsoft have two hero devices?
I’m not sure anyone knows.
I’m not sure anyone cares but the marketeers, although even worse will be if very few buyers care about Windows Phone 8.
So between all the hype for unfinished devices and software and Microsoft claiming two different phones from two competitors are the *it* device for its new mobile OS, I bet the next round of phones have the same amount of success with the public the last generation did. None at all.
See also Nokia slams HTC’s Windows Phone 8 announcement, calls it a ‘tactical re-branding’. Whatever you call it, I rather like HTC’s chutzpah. I think I’ll emulate them and start selling a line of rebadged personal computers called Windows 8z.
Nokia and Samsung have announced the hardware, but Where oh where is Windows Phone 8?
Apparently aware that time is running out, Microsoft has at long last spoken. Next week, the company will release a beta SDK… to a few people. Calling it a limited “Preview” release, some number of developers with existing, published Windows Phone 7 applications will be able to use the new SDK. This is in addition to an existing private beta program already running, that’s giving OEMs and special software partners access to the software.
A full SDK will come, but not until the company properly unveils the operating system—which is currently rumored to happen on October 29th. Presuming Windows Phone 8 devices ship this year—and Microsoft is certainly talking as if they will—that leaves developers little time to update their applications and get ready for the new platform.
Needless to say, developers are unhappy. They had months of SDK access prior to Windows Phone’s initial release. The same was true of the major Mango update; Microsoft gave developers beta firmware, so that they could test it on real devices, and an updated SDK months before the software was actually delivered. iPhone developers similarly have ample access to new SDKs and firmwares; the iOS 6 SDK was first made available on June 11th. With iPhone 5 likely to materialize next week, that will be three months of SDK access to prepare for the new platform. This compares to a handful of weeks for Windows Phone 8 developers.
Microsoft has announced the release to manufacturing (RTM) of Windows Phone 7, their last great hope to recover their position in the smartphone market:
Today is the day that the Windows Phone team has been driving towards, and we’re very excited to say that we’ve reached the biggest milestone for our internal team – the release to manufacturing (RTM) of Windows Phone 7! While the final integration of Windows Phone 7 with our partners’ hardware, software, and networks is underway, the work of our internal engineering team is largely complete.
Windows Phone 7 is the most thoroughly tested mobile platform Microsoft has ever released. We had nearly ten thousand devices running automated tests daily, over a half million hours of active self-hosting use, over three and a half million hours of stress test passes, and eight and a half million hours of fully automated test passes. We’ve had thousands of independent software vendors and early adopters testing our software and giving us great feedback. We are ready.
Now the question is when partnering cell phone hardware vendors and service providers will be ready to launch some Windows Phone 7 phones. The consensus is before the end of the year and perhaps as soon as October. Early reviews range from the dismal to mildly favorable although the missing features enumerated in the latter are a trifle disconcerting.