Skip to main content

Coming and going, Part I: This is the worst time for apps to leave Windows Mobile

That conundrum is often used to portray the problem of the relatively weak developer support that has plagued Microsoft's mobile platform and now the broader Universal Windows Platform of which it is a part.

We know that developers will make apps for a platform that has a reasonable number of users. Users will also use a platform that has the popular apps they enjoy. Windows phone has historically had a poor representation of both users and app developers, and therein lies the problem. Users won't come (in part) due to missing apps. Developers won't bring apps to a platform without users. And around and round we go.

Admittedly, there are many Windows phone users that greatly enjoy the platform and find that the "app gap" presents a minor impact to their smartphone activity.

The Windows phone user base numbers in the millions, but it accounts for just 1% of global smartphone users — a lot of users, but a small target compared to iPhone and Android. The experiences, compromises, and expectations of Windows phone users are not completely reflective of the rest of the billions of other smartphone users out there.

When you use iOS or Android, you expect that any advertised app will be available on your phone, whether you're inclined to use it or not. A Windows phone user is often better served not getting his hopes up, given the lackluster level of developer support. Currently, Windows phone is indeed alive and kicking, but many developers consider Windows only as an afterthought, if at all. Even worse, there are those who have supported the platform, and seemingly as a second thought decided the platform was not worth continued investment.

Alas, these departing developers and businesses have joined what is seemingly, on some level, a Windows phone app exodus.

Three's a crowd

The industry of developers, users and the platforms, iOS and Android, have seemingly forged a symbiosis that benefits that trio of entities. Users demand apps that developers eagerly provide. Apple and Google reap millions of dedicated users to their respective platforms. The dreaded "other" category of platforms to which Windows phone has been recently relegated struggles on the outside, reaching in, in an attempt to be a part of that dynamic, popular and relevant "clique."

Windows mobile is strategically buoyed by the UWP.

Despite a perpetual struggle, and general consumer rejection, Microsoft's mobile platform has remained afloat (despite declarations of its demise). Windows Mobile is strategically buoyed by its position as part of the broader Universal Windows Platform. Moreover, Microsoft's "one core" strategy offers developers an incentive of hundreds of millions of Windows users as a potential target of a developers Store apps. Some developers have continued their embrace of the platform while others, despite this incentive, have opted out.

Still, Microsoft envisions' a future for its phones. In a memo to OEM partners in May of this year Microsoft stated:

We'll continue to adapt Windows 10 for small screens. We'll continue to invest in key areas – security, management, and Continuum capabilities – that we know are important to commercial accounts and to consumers who want greater productivity. And we'll help drive demand for Lumia devices.

The consistent builds that are released for not only Windows 10 desktop but also Mobile are a testimony to this commitment. Moreover, the attention that is expected to be received by the mobile portion of the UWP in the RedStone 2 update is encouraging. Despite wavering developer support and vociferous complaints from the fan base, Microsoft is intent on having a piece of the mobile pie beyond an app presence on iOS and Android.

Going, going, GONE!

Microsoft's commitment has not gone unchallenged. 2016 has not been an easy year for Microsoft's mobile efforts or the platforms dedicated fans. We've seen a continuing drop in market share. This loss of share though expected under the firm's retrenchment efforts is still not easy to see.

This app exodus is occurring during a time of flux in the smartphone industry.

The release of data that reveals the plunge of Microsoft's mobile share from its minuscule 3% to 1% would be discouraging to anyone. It has evidently discouraged the developers of My Fitness Pal, Kayak and several others as they have removed their apps from the platform. In the face of quarterly data that we know reflects an expected, retrenchment-affected, market share decrease, app developers seem to receive this data as a signal to depart the platform. It is a distressing trend.

Though data that reflects Microsoft's current position is a relevant measure for developers to determine their investment or lack thereof in Microsoft's ecosystem, it is not the only measure. Indeed, this app exodus is occurring during a critical time of flux in the entire smartphone industry.

Riding the wave or wiping out?

Like a surfer riding a wave, Microsoft is following this shift. The company is no longer looking to compete in the traditional/modern smartphone space. After nearly ten years since its inception, the modern smartphone market is at the beginning of a tectonic shift. Smartphone hardware specs have nearly plateaued in the phones evolution toward the form and function of pocketable PCs. Even the recently announced iPhone 7, "the best iPhone yet", remains (in my opinion) on a dead-end course of incremental advancements rather than meeting the transformative needs of the current paradigm shift.

Microsoft's strength is designing software and hardware that easily transitions according to context with Windows 10, universal apps and Continuum. This positions them for the next bend in the curve with a potential ultra-mobile PC or 3-in-1.

Furthermore, personal computing is moving toward a focus on messaging as a platform. Under this paradigm users will be able to "do" things via bots or apps directly from the messenger on their smartphones. Microsoft's purchase of messenger developer Wand Labs positions Redmond to potentially standardize, via its Conversations as a Canvas strategy the use of app functions without the need for the app on one's device.

Moreover, there are inherent shortcomings to the current "warehouse of apps" app model. The move toward AI and bots, supported by giants such as Facebook, Apple, Google and Microsoft along with start-up Viv looks to rectify those problems.

Furthermore, Microsoft's Universal Windows Platform, which encompasses all form factors presents a much broader opportunity for developers than the small Windows phone market alone.

Developers who've removed their apps may not be considering the changing industry.

Consequently, developers who have removed their apps from Windows after focusing on Redmond's current state and the data reflecting the company's dropping mobile share may be missing an opportunity inherent in the industry's current shift and Microsoft's position as a leader therein.

Still, the apps are gone, more may leave, and that's not a good thing.

This doesn't look good

Though never a good time, developers pulling apps from Windows probably couldn't come at a worse time than right now.

Microsoft is in the nascent stages of trying to sell the industry on its Universal Windows Platform. Their messaging deliberately takes the focus off of the phone and directs it toward the breadth of the entire universal platform which includes PCs, Xbox, 2-in-1s, HoloLens, phone and more. Those who resist this perspective have likely not fully embraced the implications of a universal platform. Terry Myerson expressed it this way in his notoriously misinterpreted words earlier this year:

We're fully committed to that 4-inch screen, there will be a time for it to be our focus, but right now it's part of the family, but it's not the core of where I hope to generate developer interest over the next year. There's no lack of recognition to realize how important that form factor is, but for Microsoft with Windows and for our platform it's the wrong place for us to lead.We're going to do some cool things with phones, but this year phones are an important part of our family but not the tip of the spear.

Myerson was indicating that the UWP, which incorporates a multitude of form factors, had a better chance of being supported if Microsoft appealed to developers with the more popular and more widely used form factors. If developers came to Windows for Xbox, PC or HoloLens, OneCore ensured that phone could also benefit from a developer's investment in Windows.

Thus, whenever a developer pulls an app from Windows phone, that removal ripples across the ecosystem and affects current users, other developers and how the platform is perceived.

Whenever an app is pulled negative ripples flow across the ecosystem.

Microsoft needs every developer vote of confidence it can get; each is a public validation of its strategy. Developers retreating from the platform is a condemning indictment that they no longer share Microsoft's vision. To invest in Windows only to later leave, signals to other developers that the experience of investing time and money in Windows was ultimately not worth that developer's effort. This effect is compounded when high-profile developers leave. In essence, whether valid or not, it is a silent advisement to other developers not to waste their time.

Fans of the platform are impacted by these departures as well. Microsoft, developers, and users are all members of an ecosystem to which each member adds value and by their participation acknowledges the value of the others. Microsoft builds the platform. Developers contribute their apps. Users invest time, money and energy supporting and championing the platform. It is perceived as a virtual slap in the face when developers who helped build the ecosystem reject it and by proxy the users that remain who valued that developers app.

Fair or not: as apps leave, fans are angered, and the UWP is perceived as a failure.

The emotions evoked by this elimination of support can be heard in the anger and frustration of some fans. Of course, a respectfully articulated argument is more compelling than the profanity laced tirades or name calling we sometimes encounter. The point here is that when developers pull their apps, many users are affected on an intensely emotional level; other developers are inclined not to invest in the platform and the UWP is perceived as a failure.

It's not over

Despite the challenges Microsoft is encountering, they're continuing unabated toward a goal to make the UWP a success. In truth, though several apps have been pulled from the platform many others have come to the platform.

Furthermore, Microsoft's UWP is only a year old. Though they've been working toward this dream for two decades. Given the many years invested in bringing the UWP to fruition I doubt that a year of negative press, some departing apps, and negative commentary will dissuade the company from doing all it can to ensure the UWP succeeds.

That said, there is a real impact to how the platform is perceived and how users are affected when developer after developer leaves the platform. How will Microsoft manage that fallout? More to the point what can they do to keep developers from leaving?

Sound off in comments and Twitter!

Jason L Ward is a columnist at Windows Central. He provides unique big picture analysis of the complex world of Microsoft. Jason takes the small clues and gives you an insightful big picture perspective through storytelling that you won't find *anywhere* else. Seriously, this dude thinks outside the box. Follow him on Twitter at @JLTechWord. He's doing the "write" thing!

340 Comments
  • Thanks for reading folks! Many of us feel the impact when an app leaves the platform. Conversely apps coming to the platform can be exciting. Of course we want more than the one step forward and one step back experienced as apps come and go. What can Microsoft do to retain developers? You know the drill - LET'S TALK!!!
  • We have not yet begun to feel the tip of Microsoft's spear...
  • Just the tip
  • I feel like we received more than just the tip from MS...
  • Amen.
     
  • There was no tip, just the shaft.  
  • that's what she said
  • http://m.windowscentral.com/microsofts-surface-phone-happening
    .....................
    If MS can get this thing going, then hopefully by version 3 we can get back to where we were several semesters back, and build from there. That means that my guess from 2013 would've been right.. Windows Phone/Mobile will be a thing of the 2020's. And, with what's going on, and how MS is positioning all of it's products, 2020+ seems to be a very reasonable timeframe for mobile to have progressed with W10 to the point where the average consumer cares... Marketing will be critical.
  • Thank you for the insightful and honest article. I especially like the link to the Ars Technica article. While I accept that Microsoft is playing the long game in the mobile it does feel from the outside a little half-hearted. When MS what's to make a bold play they do and they go "all-in".
  • Just look at their initial cloud efforts, early Azure and BPOS (the forerunner to Office365), they had many faults and low uptake but they didn't give up and led the market to the destination they had in mind. Quite the opposite of what they are doing in mobile. I'm ever hopeful that they turn ot around but cannot see how. I'd hate to be in the Windows Mobile team right now. Must be very depressing. Hang in there guys!
  • First you sell the need, then you sell the product. Microsoft has put zero effort in selling any need for anything they are trying to pitch. Like molasses running through cheese cloth Microsoft has been clueless in attracting customers to their phone business. It's part amazing and part frustrating to watch the degree of ineptitude exhibited by Microsoft in putting any form of mobile strategy together.
  • Lol. I agree. What was their initial marketing pitch for WP7?... "You shouldn't want to use your phone. Buy a WP because you'll never actually have to use it!""...
  • This! I've been saying for years that MS has never given consumers a compelling (and simultaneously mass-marketable) reason to choose WP/WM over the competition. It's such an obvious omission in their "strategy" (a.k.a blundering)... MS is perfectly correct to not waste money on advertising before they can directly and clearly explain to consumes what is unique about W10M and why they should want one. That they require a decade to do that is frustrating.
  • Am worried about Satya's plan about windows phone....if Ms does not release a device between now and jan 2017 am afraid windows phone will die..Ms must look at its strategy and also have a look at what their competitors are doing...
    Developers are pulling apps due to low usage which is as a result of low device sales...
  • With the current state of Windows 10 even if they release the best hardware in the best design and for entry level price - it will not make any difference, as W10 is a mess, especially on mobile. Yes it works, but even doing simple stuff is a struggle... So they need to fix the OS first...
  • This is blatantly untrue. W10M has never been better.
  • This is blatantly fanboyish.
    I am on 8.1 and my coworker in the next cubicle is an avid "updates" guy armed with a 1520 and WM10. Every time he proclaimes "this has gotten really good" after each update and immediately regrets what he said, to the point that it's now a running joke in the office! The OS doesn't even scroll in the Photos app as smoothly as an Android phone, let alone my 1320 w 8.1! Glitches are everywhere, design language is a who's who of disparate UI elements as if each OS app is designed by people from different planets. The days when Windows Phone had something to defend itself against the competition is long gone. Microsoft has to realize that if it was about half baked "features" we would have all been using Android phones. It was about the special UI and UX, and those things are now a mess, period.
  • I really want someone to tell me, clearly, what the advantage of UWP really is. It is cool to share DLLs, business and data logic, (and the idea is not new either) but UI? The only thing "design once, run everywhere" has brought us is generic UX that is NOT optimised for the device it built for. This has led to a culture of lazy developers, satisfied with something that "just works" on the target platform and is not polished, carefully tuned to provide a great look and feel. Now we end up with apps that don't belong on our laptops (the Mail app is really, really a symbol of this disconnect...or the Videos app that is incapable of playback when minimized, because it sleeps in that state) and phone apps that have to accomodate the laptop and therefore are not optimised to the fullest extent for the phone. This is the mess you get, when you want to force and ideology on an industry where it doesn't belong. They did this to do what exactly? Lure developers in by telling them it is very easy to create apps for Windows? Do you think companies really care about the cost of creating a UI for a target platform, and that's what has been in the way? A great experience was sacrificed practically for nothing.
     
  • Well Lumia 1520 is already pretty old (2013) by phone standards. Lumia 950 is overall pretty smooth. Also UWPs have different advantages (that may be used or not by the developers), like running on xbox, pc, W10M, hololens. Also being able to use both the phone screen and the external one with continuum (like powerpoint, it's great), also continuum in general is pretty cool. Also they offer security. also if companies didn't care about costs there wouldn't be any missing apps in windows phone.
  • What does "old" have to do with it when the device is capable of running latest graphic intensive games? Somehow the device is old for viewing photos but can do everything that traditionally requires CPU and GPU power? Running the same code on the same core on multiple devices is neat, and I said that in my post. I am talking about the forced UI that has led to disasters both on the desktop and the mobile. To address the "cost" thing, if you decide to develop an app for a platform, having to recreate a simple UI won't stand in your way. If you decide to develop for Windows on the desktop and the only thing you have to do is create a polished UI for the phone, you'd do it; but trying to adapt a desktop and laptop UI on a phone, which results in the destruction of the phone language and also the dual personality of apps on the desktop is too much a sacrifice for that tiny non-overhead of companies creating UIs for their apps. The fact that this very post is about apps leaving the platform is a testament to what I'm trying to say. P.S. If Samsung created Continuum the way it is now, we'd all call it gimmick. As I said previously, Android is already capable of this with minimum effort: just project the home UI to a second screen and voila. Android has been doing the same thing on phones and tablets from the beginning. The TV is just another dispaly to resize the UI on. Plus, there are thousands on apps there that can actually work on the projected screen unlike on Windows where the few apps developed for Continuum are barely usable. Continuum is not at all a "game changer". I challenge anyone to defend it as a Microsoft winning strategy.
  • Hey, look at that... someone else on this site who "gets it". Completely agree. I've been saying the same thing under the tag line: "continuum, a feature for developers, not for consumers".
  • To address the photos app, hardware and drivers does impact connection speed so 'old' when scrolling photos while being able to play graphically intensive games can be a thing seeing that photos app is continuously pulling from the cloud seamlessly while a downloaded game may not.
  • @AgentTheGreat: the advantage of UWP is that with it you **could** actually code once and deploy everywhere, but the fact is that providing a great experience across devices - and in particular small screens - requires significant investment for apps other than “Hello World”. Market share not being there on the mobile space, the investment is hardly justified so you end up with poorly designed apps as you say. This sentiment explains pretty much why I haven't brought my app to Windows Mobile yet. Like many other Windows developers, I’m taking a wait-and-see approach.
  • I maintain that the idea of the same UI working on all screens is a bad one. Business logic and data acces are all shared across these devices, that much is true. But the UI has to be created for the specific device size or you'll end up with the unpolished, generic, unintuitive experience on something as personal and emotionally important as a phone. That's where Apple is winning. That's wherer Apple has always been winning, and a spark of "I get it" appeared when Windows Phone 7 first came out and it was killed...unfairly.
  • Neat app! I'm developing an app for WP (mainly 8.1) myself, and it works with audio too. What language is your app developed in? You seem to be able to work with audio natively, is that C++ or .NET? Because if it's .NET I'd like to know the libraries!
  • Thanks for the kudos. The Audio/Video pipeline is indeed developed in native C++ and the UI is written in C#. When your app is published give me a ping and I’ll definitely check it out. Regarding UWP itself, as you certainly know it also allows developers to use a distinct UI for each device family if they want. The idea of reducing development cost by having just one solution to build is still a reasonable one. As I said it’s up to us developers to leverage the capabilities of the platform, but that can only happen within the limits of the current market landscape.
  • W10 Mobile is a disaster.
  • That's insightful.
  • It depends on hardware, my 950 (non XL) is great! but my SOs 830 has the odd moment. But to defend it: * Best UI (mix of pinned apps, and general list is the best app layout design over iPhone, Droid and even BB) * Best keyboard, the inbuilt flow keyboard is superb and much nicer than even installed Swype/Swiftkey/watevs * Best font rendering, and size handling. I can barely read my iPhone at times the fonts in apps are so small, even when some areas of the OS are better as I've set a larger font Its not all roses, its not all perfect, but some aspects of Windows Mobile are easy to defend. I still think its the best quality design (bar bugs) UI'wise. But the crinkles, and the lack of apps do let it down. Frustrating as MS clearly have the skilled people, just not the appetite.
  • I agree with most of your points. IMO, they should start playing with exclusives again. I know I know. Microsoft is relying WAAS bla bla. But Microsoft is really dropping the ball in the consumer market. Barely any head turning ads to convince the public that they have a mobile OS. UWP is a great concept no doubt but it's not attracting developers fast enough to even justify W10M relevance in the market. The only OEMs who built W10M hardware tends to aim for enterprise users and this is happening while Apple and Android phones is getting the big headlines every year. Just my opinion.
  • To disagree with you is to be called names. OK, the 1520 was great, but is an older device. My 950 runs great with Win10. My only complaints will all be handled when AT&T finally decides to release the firmware OTA. And no, my positive experience does not qualify as "fan boy" status.
  • People here seem to misunderstand the OS glitches as a result of lack of enough power. The Photos app I mentioned has the kind of glitch, stutter and "hanging" behavior that results from glitchy software, as it might stop functioning altogether and you have to kill the app and restart it or it crashes.     for those who claim WM is now so great and perfect, go to your interests on Cortana. There is a slider checkbox there, and a save button. For the first time in the mobile OS history, you actually need to tap save after toggling the checkbox! If that's not enough, try to add a new interest. You tap the add button, then you see an almost empty screen containing a few items. You'd think tapping those items adds them as interests. Another dialog opens which is practically completely empty, with only the page title set as the title of the interest, and an add button. Then you tap add, and then you'll have to tap save to save the state of the aforementioned check box, and any interests added!   As developers we know what this means. Remember, this in fact is the official release of Windows Mobile 10. The people at Microsoft obviously have no clue how to design the UX. You should try it yourself to really grasp what I'm talking about.   How's the Extras app doing by the way, on the official WM? STILL employing the Windows Phone 8 UI ONE YEAR after the official release?   Windows Mobile it's an afterthought to Microsoft. There is a reason why I yell "fan boy" at those who call this absolute mess "the best".
  • Sounds my personal experience except I'm the W10M user and my colleague still use the lower-end 640 with WP8.1. Oddly I'm tiny bit jelous since he seems doesn't have much issue with it except of the app gap issue, but he does love how it works and how polish it is. I didn't really complain about the OS-related experience. In my case, I'm the guy that have have always updated W10M (non-insider of course). Though I got much better features and some new apps that isn't available to WP8.1, my general experience isn't that all sunshines and rainbows in many ways. Some glitches, crashes and odd behavior happens. Heck just recently when I was trying to take a photo during a party, my phone embarrasingly can't take a photo beause of the error "the camera is used by another app..." something, thus I have to restart and gave up, I just borrow my friends phone in the process. In regards to UI and general UX, W10M (and W10 on PC too) is indeed isn't as perfectly consistent as before, heck even cohesion is bit questionable as some Microsoft-owned apps tends to have slightly different design and UI layouts. Having a designer eye is both blessing and a curse as I can't helpt it but noticed that some apps aren't same measurement of UI elements, inconsistent or no animations, glitchy behavior, gestures, etc. Hamburger menu for example is highly inconsistent from Xbox app, Mail, Groove (which have poorly implemented swipe gesture, not as good as Windows Central app which is kudos to the dev), and some other MS apps. The lack of attention to detail of MS is the reason why People is even released with Windows 10 that feels and acts like an early alpha-preview. Heck even the new Skype UWP still looks unpolished in terms of appearance while the first time I remember I used Skype app on WP8 and even W8 looks well polished ones (except for features).  This is always leads me to thinking if MS even utilize their designers to work on not just on UI aesthetics but in UX in general. They suddenly lost the attention to detail, a company that introduced well designed Aero and Metro. It seems that they're just cost-cutting that they just make their programmers to be UI designers despite the fact that they're not specialized with it. Even Google managed to catch-up with good design language, a company used to be also not-great with design back then. Heck, even some Linux distros manage to make their UI and UX polished.
  • Have you used W10 mobile or are you basing everything off of what your coworker says? From the sounds of it he is in the insider program which is a beat version of an update. I would hope you know what that means. It will have bugs, issues, crashes. I own a 950xl running Windows 10 and I own a galaxy note 7. The galaxy note 7 is a brand new phone and the UI likes to hang on me or apps crash. The gallery app also has issue. So before you talk about how messed up windows 10 mobile is how about you actually try it and stop being an Android fanboy that you clearly are. Android is far from perfect Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Yeah I'm "clearly" an Android fanboy. That's why I have a Surface RT, a Surface 2, my first smartphone was Lumia 520 and now I'm rocking a 1320 with 8.1, and I have an ASUS N552VW laptop running Windows 10.
  • Have you used W10 mobile or are you basing everything off of what your coworker says? From the sounds of it he is in the insider program which is a beat version of an update. I would hope you know what that means. It will have bugs, issues, crashes. I own a 950xl running Windows 10 and I own a galaxy note 7. The galaxy note 7 is a brand new phone and the UI likes to hang on me or apps crash. The gallery app also has issue. So before you talk about how messed up windows 10 mobile is how about you actually try it and stop being an Android fanboy that you clearly are. Android is far from perfect Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • +1
  • it has never been better, bwcause they really se a low plank for it to start with... Not a single feature on W10M works perfectly. NOT A SINGLE ONE... I am using it on Lumia 1520 and belevie you me, its a stuggle...
  • Works fine on a 950, not a struggle at all. Maybe a iphone is better for you :)
  • I'm using the latest release build on a 950 and my experience is often very frustrating. I regularly see things in W10M that I think are great adds and encourage me, but then I run into bugs that irritate me tremendously! Maybe your experience is different. If so, congrats. But for me, the OS is still very buggy and unpolished. That's the biggest frustration. At this point in the game, I expect more, and I don't think that is unreasonable.
  • Are you on AT&T waiting for them to unshackle the firmware update?
  • I have the unlocked lumia 1520. I dont think I ever got the firmware update...
  • name one that is perfect?
  • Maybe so mark van dijke 1,  He wants his devices to work, work right and work smooth.  the Iphone is the perfect choice for him!
  • Works like a **** on my 950.
  • Update (RE: Upgrade) your phone, then talk to us. W10m on my 920 sucks too. Yes. The original intent was for  W10M to be able to run on all WP 8 and WP8.1 Devices (that's obviously not going to happen), but een n the devices where it has happened, the perception seems to be somewhat less than favorable. It runs fine, very smothly infact on my 950. I just really think trying to run W10M on an earlier phone, regardless of the specs, is going to leave most users somewhat disappointed. 
  • It run s smootly on Lumia too, but it sucks at every corner - alarms are dissmissed with any gesture on the screen (not what u want whe u sleepy), alarms distort the sound sometimes, Groove massacars the music from time to time, user interface is all over the place, there is no consitancy whatsoever, Cortana is a complete and utter dissapointment - I have Celcius selected in the settings, yet she still uses F, in the latest build she stopped doing most of the stuff, she cant do anyrhing with Groove anymore. I can continue on and on...
  • why would I spend money on something that disspaoints me? I dont change my phone every year just becsause I can.
  • ...and you don't see a problem in that? Let's assume you're right, and the touch hanging in the photos app when scrolling through a picture and eventually crashing is not a WM bug. Generally, does a 3 year old iPhone or Galaxy run with hiccups like this...when viewing photos?!
  • Yeah WM10 has never been better, cause its been a **** since it's inception. 8.1 was more stable, smooth, fast and better on battery. Hell, even camera was better on 8.1
  • You are right... WM10 has never been better because it was so bad that you couldn't make it worse even if ypou tried... May be by Redstone 2, WM10 could be as good as WP8.1 was...
  • Seriously doubt it. Think about it, they released Windows 10 29/07/15, they release RS1 a year later, so by the minimal estimations it took them 2 years to develope it and yet still now they are working on the core? Like how does it even work if the core is still under construction?
  • Agreed that there's a huge gap between the phone releases but windows mobile won't die, it became part of the larger ecosystem. Ppl have to be more informed on OEMs that make Windows Mobile devices (Lumia = Windows phone and vice versa, is all they've been told). We certainly need a contender (prime time hardware) in each of these 3 categories: Flagship, mid-range and budget. And I don't think we need any Surface phone in 2016. It shouldn't even launch in the early 2017 if it's not ready.
  • If they will wait till W10M is ready, Surface phone will never be released :-)
  • I am also WP user, daily facing problem on os, no apps, weekly updates r more worst then earlier so what can i do shift to other phone or keep patience stay with wp some more time?☹
  • Just unsubscribe from windows insiders
  • Insider programm at least gives an illusion of progress. Production OS is updated too slowly and is even more horrible than insider builds.
  • Production OS is updated more often than iOS and Android. While I agree that the OS is buggy as hell, it is getting better and they are actively working on making it better.
  • yet it doesn t feel any less BETA each time, does it...
  • WinCoder,  Frequency of updates mean nothing if they are all crap.  IOS and Android don't need to have weekly updates because they are smooth, polished and finished.  W10/M is a mess,  and these weekly updates do nothing but muck everything up more because "insiders oppps, i mean developers"  are sending info back.  and its just a big circle of crap going round and round.  If microsoft really wants W10/M to survive,  I think they should hire back a few thousand people that they fired for no apparant reason other than cost savings.  In doing that,  they could have an internal development team to actually push the OS forward instead of having it in the "hamster wheel".  
  • I have to agree. If you want stability, roll back to current production or perhaps to release preview.
  • You only get weekley updates if you're in the insider (BETA) program. Get out of it, and stick with the stable builds. 
  • Don't necessarily agree with everything you said, but I've been thinking for a while that Microsoft has got to adjust their release schedule. Going through another holiday season without a flagship is brutal. The last time we did that with McClaren (spelling?) killed any momentum the platform may have had at that point.
  • Good for Microsoft that this time there is no momentum to lose, so they can sit back and relax without launching any new phone hardware. I read an article today that there will be no new Lumia phones and they will dtop the brand by end of year.
  • Really? Where'd you read that?
  • WinBeta.
  • Saw this on Twitter too saying the same thing.
    https://mobile.twitter.com/Daniel_Rubino/status/774147893162762240?p=v
  • Actually, there is a strategy. "Don't come out trying to win a war, that is currently not winnable. Wait until the pieces are in place." Current price cuts put the 950 in the medium range, while its specs are still topping of the latest iPhone, apart from pure processor speed (which could be easily remedied un a refresh). And the core of the OS is still undergoing a major transition, with OneCore being constantly getting better. I think, late 2017 will see Msft being positioned to attack again.
  • Forget about a new device. Lumia 950 xl stock in India is 0. How does MS expect us to use a windows phone when its not even available?
  • The scarcity of their devices in loyal markets like India and Brazil is stunning.
  • Perfect timing for your article, Jason. This is a good read. I'm very grateful to msft for their continued support for the mobile form factor, I wouldn't leave this platform anytime soon. One core still have a great potential, msft should focus on where the ship is broken. IMO, Surface phone might be the best chance to showcase the true Windows Mobile experience from both Hardware and Software perspective. OEMs will follow the lead (just as they did with the Surface line). Ppl would really want to try the next big thing in a phone and this in turn catches the attention of developers. The apps and smartphones have all became so generic today (upgrading the hardware, updating the software version numbers and so on), there needs to be a change. It is well known that even though Android and iOS owns the market today, it lacks what msft has. The vision of unified experience in more than one device. But that shouldn't be enough, msft must be more practical.
  • One thing MS could do is get rid of metro buttons or at least make Windows phones capable booting up with either option.  I'm a fan of metro but not so much on smaller screens.  Create an environment for things like launchers or create a screen where all tiles can display notifications from apps we select. That is if we want the entire screen's tiles to display a notification from Windows Central, it should do that. It would be something no other is doing and look pretty cool. If I want a cool looking clock to grace every tile like those TV screens at Millers Ale House, why not? Microsoft has to create an environment where developers are doing creative stuff can create. Not lock them out because it doesn't serve some purpose no one knows about. Not even the Garage team wants to write for our mobile but you can't shut them up about stuff they are planning and doing on the other platforms. Every other week, new stuff.  How is that happening?  We can't do what Apple does and won't do what android does. So now what?  
  • Do not say it here or wpfans will peck you! :)
    I told the same a few years ago. People are afraid of WP because of tiles and long list of apps. No constant pages with apps, not group in list. Give people abilioty to create launchers, you already do not care abouty Windows Mobile, so why not open it up so the crowd will do your job? :)
  • I don't even care anymore what they say about me since I tend not to crowd source what I have to say. I do try to be as respectful as I can but, no one can tell me where this platform is headed. No one. But it looks to me that Windows Phone is for Microsoft as close to an afterthought as I've ever seen it. 
    Having said that, there are things they could do is create the environment where developers can dream in. There doesn't appear to be any room for developers unless they are building business applications for big companies. The latest Windows phone from HP is a perfect example of where the focus is. Even Hololens won't ever reach where the people are, particularly those that buy budget devices and balk at a .99 cent price tag.  Beyond Garage, where is that talent willing to swim in deep waters? When we begin to lose apps like Domino's, that points to a pure benign neglect of not only the platform for those waiting for the truth from Redmond whatever it is. Where are we going?  But this withering on the vine is simply mean spirited.
  • I think that 'no one can' is incorrect, I think that, rather, it is 'no one will' which changes the discussion immensely.
  • Agreed.
  • Sure, take it all away and create a copy of Android and iPhone. People will flock to WM because they just love copy cats better than the real thing :)
  • The big problem with allowing developers to create launchers is resource management which, after viruses, is the largest complaint among Android users. If you were to restrict the resources to what the current Start Screen uses, you'd find that developers would scream bloody murder about being 'restricted'. One of the few differentiating factors for Windows Mobile is resource stability, losing that make a much more negative impact than the percentage of people that dislike tiles. A great majority of people I know really like the tiles, especially when they realize that they can do so much with them and the start screen's UI.
  • Every time I show someone how my photos, music, and files seamlessly integrate between mobile, Xbox, and PC, they are truly amazed. My kids use Apple and hate how hard it is to save and find files of all types. I have moved many people to Windows Mobile but MS just does not seem to work that hard at informing and moving people over. They need to inform the masses of the ease of the platform. If MS would create or pay to have developed some well needed key strategic apps, and then inform people or pay a key celebrity to promote the platform, we might be able to crawl out of this rut. My dad always said the only difference between a rut and a grave is the rut has both ends kicked out - it is time for MS to kick the ends out of the ruts or roll over and die.
  • Nah. Unfortunately for us, Apple made better integration between their producs than Microsoft! I can answer phone call on my iPad or MacBook for example. Where is this integration in MS products!? :( Photos, Videos are shared ebtween all Apple products and even more. So Microsoft again failed here even though they released UWP and it looks like all their products are living in one university , but in reality they are not.
  • All my photos, documents, saved games, etc are shared between all my Windows devices, and I can get new files and documents on my devices (all tablets and phones) than I ever could, or still can, on my iOS devices unless I want to throw them into the cloud... There is much more consistency between first party apps on Windows than there is between iOS and MacOS. I can list of things I want changed or added, but then again, I could do so for any platform. Photos and videos have always been accessible to all Windows products since WP7, so I am not sure of your point here. I can also make cool utilities for myself and run them directly on my devices which is next to impossible to do (definitely not free either) on an iOS device. One University????????
  • Good. Then tell me how you can share doc, images, videos between windows phone, PC if not by using OneDrive, which is a cloud storage? Heh, game saves sharing between iOS devices was created even before Microsoft released Windows 10. Do not get me wrong, I am windows guy. I use Windows, I work on Windows, I develop apps for Windows. I have 3 PC and 1 tablet. But I also have iPhone. Mac and iPad as well as couple of Android devices. I can tell you that iOS+Mac OS provides better integration is a way simple user want it. And do not forget we are talking about Metro applications, not good old Windows applications!
  • I have to agree the integration in macOS and iOS is amazing. I am a windows guy at heart, but Microsoft makes the most idiotic decisions, take for example "messaging everywhere" That was fanatastic! but no someone at MS decided to take it off and switched it to Skype. On Apple everything takes to each other. Cortana another great feature, wait until the iphone allows the sms to be sent to Windows 10
  • Double down now. More advertising communication and big push for Windows 10 this holiday. Answer 'why is 10 cool' and 'what can 10 do?' More #ninjacat. People love cats memes. Open Windows, open doors. Cue devices opening with Win 10 and people starting work and play.
  • Nice article Jason, I think UWP is misunderstood, from mobile developers perspective. Microsoft has been sending very confusing signals in 2015 with Astoria promising that Android apps could be ported to Windows Mobile, then in 2016 they say no, that Astoria is cancelled but now there is this thing called iOS Bridge! but the reality is that iOS Bridge isn't working yet still.  Microsoft needs to decide if they go the UWP development route completely or if there are still hopes to bring apps from iOS to Windows Mobile to save on development costs and security patching costs for apps iOS apps like Facebook, Youtube,  Whatsapp, Instagram, Snapchat which have hundreds of code changes every week since their developer base is large.
  • Rumors in Italy say that even MSFT Italy does provide Android devices to its employees and not Lumia's any more. I think we have to accept that MSFT is going to leave mobile industry and, in medium term, the entire retail market in order to focus on enterprise services (such as Azure and Office). I do not see how they could change the path at this point.
  • Do you have a single source for this "rumor"? Where are you reading it?
  • Do you have a single source for this "rumor"? Where are you reading it?
  • MSFT employees. They are also returning their Lumia 950 to MSFT and changing them with Android devices. For them it's crystal clear that MSFT is completely retiring from mobile
  •   Awesome article Jason! Love the level headedness of it. I think MS needs to regain marketshare. That's how you encourage devs. Yes it sounds easier said than done, but MS has done nothing but diminish the marketshare due to their own stupidity. Anyways, I think the best way to start is to get the important apps. Your Snapchats, Pokemon gos etc. about a year/ year half the guys on this site were saying "who needs snapchat" etc, and they right... In a way... But there are people who genuinely won't join the platform because of these apps. And to be honest, why should they? If a certain platform is not offering something they don't want, why should they change from they currently using.   MS needs to buckle up, recently they have not shown any seriousness in the mobile industry, so it's enough reason for devs to think why should they...    
  • I'm a loyal MS customer and I own a PC, Lumia and Xbox. The biggest blow was not an app developer, but Microsoft itself. It suddenly stopped supporting public transport info for Montreal, something that they used to do, and other platforms continue doing. Microsoft really needs to step up the game in terms of service.
  • Satya Nadella should be fired.
  • Really? MS's stock has gone up 50% since he joined...
  • Should have retained Elop to manage the mobile business. Satya wasted $7.2B on Nokia and he just let the two year lapse without significant premium device. If you're paying 7.2B, at least get the patents (not just license). This would prevent Nokia from building Android devices in the future. Second option would have been to just give Nokia the money and let them use the cash for WP. Maybe we would have a great hardware by now instead of the cheapy-style L950. FYI, I still own the L920 and it's almost 4 years old now.
  • When Microsoft acquired nokia, Steve Balmer was CEO. Satya Nadella had nothing to do with it. Get your facts straight. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Go back to the voice of the customer: the companies/developers.  Why do they develop an app at all?  Why do they continue to maintain them?  Why do they STOP?  In my opinion, this was always about $$$.  If you want companies to develop and maintain apps, remove all the reasons why they won't.  Usually, the inhibitors are cost of development (paying people to do it), ease of development (are there tools that make porting an existing app quick and easy), cost to maintain after publishing.  With few exceptions, I think Microsoft has not done anything substantive in those areas.
  • They could try advertising.  I know, it sounds radical, but other companies do it.
  • They are in the same boat as Blackberry.  They got so comfortable with what they were doing, they don't think they could be touched. Balmer did nothing with the new mobile frontier and when he did find an extra 11 bucks in his seat cushions, he pushed out Microsoft Kin and a Kin Two. By the time the stupid wore off, the train had already left the station. Now panic attacks took over. Buying and doing absolutely nothing with Nokia.
  • "And we'll help drive demand for Lumia devices."
    This is a flat-out lie and nicely illustrates that you should not put too much fate in these statements. Yet in all your articles you seem to treat them almost as absolute thruths. "a critical time of flux in the entire smartphone industry"
    I have no idea what this is supposed to mean. The smarphone market has been and will (for the foreseable future) be iOS and Android. There is no flux. "the modern smartphone market is at the beginning of a tectonic shift"
    Tectonic no less. Again, there's no indication of this except whishful thinking on your or Microsoft's part. It's not because a market has plateaued that it will or must change. Look at the PC market which keeps limping along. "More to the point what can they do to keep developers from leaving?"
    That's the 1 million dollar question. The few apps that left are not the problem, it's the ones that could and will leave in the coming months.
  • I think that, by flux, he means more stagnation... the other two platforms have leveled off, gotten fat ands lazy (like the PC industry of 2007) and is more than ripe for upheaval.
  • Microsoft needs to accessorize and make WM10 feel like an extension of Windows 10. Give the XBox One controller a clip to connect a phone to it and allow Win10 and XboxOne to stream games to it. Show consumers they are serious about gaming on the platform to get them on the platform and give debs an incentive to port to UWP. Simplify Continuum or at least market it better. Being able to still use your phone is a great feature but its holding Continuum back because it stops it from being on all W10M handsets. Put the focus on connecting your phone to a monitor and getting the desktop OS and with UWP apps getting that full desktop experience. Market the ability to still use your phone as a Continuum Plus feature for supported handsets. Not only is it a good mobile feature but you can use it to take on Chromebooks and iPads. Why would you need a phone and a small tablet or 11" laptop when your phone can turn any monitor or TV into a Win10 computer with Office, Plex, Xbox One streaming (needs to be a feature) and a web browser? Get Kodi to release a sideloadable UWP app. I bought a Firestick for that exact purpose. People buy Android boxes for that exact purpose. Imagine Kodi on your phone wirelessly connected to your TV via Continuum. No sticks or boxes just a phone on the couch.
  • I think MSFT has to put some more thought in their strategy....the current one of focussing on PC user base as an incentive for developers is clearly not working. PC users spend more than 70% of their time in a browser n the rest with Office applications(Win32) and others...so it doesn't naturally come to a user to download/use an app from the Store.... The other side of the story is tht u always have ur phone next to u....If u want to tweet something, u wud automatically reach fr ur phone to do it or open Twitter on ur browser(which is already open) rather than using the UWP app on the PC....cud say the same for FB,Messenger,Uber, etc.... The point I'm trying to make is tht apps r very essential on form factors where apps provide a far better experience compared to the browser version....tht translates to Mobile/Tablets/Xbox and not really PCs....So, to close the app gap MSFT needs to focus on Mobile/Xbox and not really on PC.....
  • I've been thinking about it and talking to people at Microsoft about it for a few years. At this point, my previous ideas probably won't work. A few years ago I suggested buying Xamarin and pushing the cross platform idea (build for iOS and Android at the same time, get WP for a small extra effort and maintain all three together). That idea would have saved companies money and time and would have allowed startups to launch on both iOS and Android at the same time. Microsoft eventually did buy Xamarin but they're still targeting it at enterprises and LOB apps. You don't hear much about it in the startup community.   I also thought Microsoft should be more involved with the startup community. At least here in silicon valley they don't really exist. They have a great program for startups called BizSpark. They have a great cloud solution for startups with Azure and BizSpark lets you get started with Azure for free. Yes, this doesn't have anything to do with WP apps, it's more about being a good player in that community so developers and startup founders don't dismiss the idea of using your technologies because "that's for enterprises". Microsoft always had great offers for startups, it's really strange they're not pushing stronger (or at all) in the heart of startup land...   At this point, the direction should be new products. HoloLens is a good example but a consumer version is probably too far away. A new category of products that also runs UWP apps and is exciting and pulls developers in would result in UWP apps that also run on WP and PCs.   
  • Wouldn't that severely limit the quality of your app? If you have to create it and worry about API limitations for each platform and work around them, it is going to be a pain and your app isn't going to be as good as it could be if developed natively. With Windows phone being completely irrelevant, it sounds better to just make a native Android and a native iOS app. They will come out better and you will have access to 99% of the market. Why tarnish your reputation with a crappy app just so you can pick up that extra 1%? Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Frankly speaking there was a lot of wishful thinking in that article. 1) With little to no interest in UWP apps for mobile, that battle has been lost. 2) Desktop users are highly skeptical of UWP and see it as inferior to Win32. 3) Xbox and Hololens are Microsofts last chance to make UWP relevant. Forget about mobile until MS can build a beachhead around UWP elsewhere, what Microsoft needs to do is convert it's (fairly hostile) PC user base into UWP users, to do that it needs UWP to evolve and have serious apps in the Windows Store. It's a credibility issue and Win Store is not taken credible, even the recent roll out of Halo Forge they managed to screw up leaving many unable to download it. Useful things and buzz around apps for Xbox and Hololens could easily be stifled by a conservative Apple style app policy blocking certification, that is a mistake MS must not make. Otherwise someone else willl come along and just do what MS wont do and people will flock to that. What Microsoft needs to do get down on it's hands and knees then beg and plead devs of Win32 apps to port them to UWP, offer help to do it and free marketing. If they do that and PC users being to come around, Win store gets it's act together, buzz worthy apps are present on Xbox and Hololens then maybe they stand a chance and can turn things around for mobile. Focusing on mobile will go absolutely nowhere, no-one other than hard core MS fans care, PC users dont care, Android/iOS devs dont care.
  • It took lots of effort to get the market share Nokia had. They should not have pulled back at all. It's going to make whatever is coming more difficult to be a success.
  • I am more into the excosystem/productivity aspects of the OS.  W10 is great and hopefully, WM10 will catch up.  The only problems I have had are the expected from the computer I use as an Insider.  Others are just fine.  When it comes to apps, I have most that I need:  Mobile banking (WF), coffee (SB), Office, and the social networks (FB, LinkedIn, Twitter, and Instagram).  I like the idea of having a pay system (BA offers one) but don't want to switch just yet.  Apps I would like are for home security cameras, and home control systems.  The APP GAP is not that great.  We don't need a million+ apps.  Perhaps, MS can fill in a few gaps themselves (and also BRING BACK MESSENGER EVERYWHERE).   
  • Jason, your articles are always very well written. But if I have to look at what MSFT is and has been making recently, I would assume that they are going to close the mobile sector at all. If they are aiming at something different then their communication is really awful. Regards
  • In my opinion it is Microsoft's fault: They have the best mobile OS, they have the best development environment (maybe shared with Apple), but still fail horribly in marketing this to consumer and also developers. I have the feeling my small 35-people-company has done more to sell Windows Phones (we recommend it to all customers, while support of cause all plattforms) than Microsoft.
  • at this point there is nothing microsoft can do to attrackt developers in my opinion. there are negilgible numbers of users on the eco-system, ms is not even not talking about phones anymore and they seem to be selling off their remaining stock. phones have even been reported being removed from the ms-stores (the physical ones). every action ms takes points to them abandoning phones and an almost here / soon(tm) HP x3 will do squat to change that. microsoft saying they want to give third party hardware the center stage was (quite likely just a cheap cop out but also) a surefire way to destroy what little success they had in the market. it takes an early adopter or fan to invest in a tiny eco system but even among that crowd no sane person invests in a third party option. you of course stick with the original because you expect anyone else (from experience with android) to not support the devices for any length of time. bottom line: microsoft is obviously backing out of the hardware business on mobile, on top of that they are not upgrading several of their most successful phones in the lineup to win10 and in addition to that they don't even provided special offers in the markets where they had tangible market penetration to keep those markets going. is there anyone wondering why they are failing? and is ther any argument, any at all for a dev to even invest a single line of code into that mess?  i am working in software development and i am a windows phone user and fan of the os but not even i would consider that eco system from a business point of view. sadly at this point there is no way to construct a viable business case for getting into windows phone since microsoft itself - while whispering very softly to the opposite - is so obviously letting it die.
  • I find it interesting, that this is part 1 of a series. It seems to me, like this could be the final one as well. Just a note of interest :P As for your question. What can they do?
    IMHO, Microsoft needs to better communicate their ideas and plans. At the moment they are being quite vague about what they have of future plans. They are still being too careful and that carefulness could lead to some developers interpreting that as misbelief in the UWP.
  • When CEO calls the troops to retrench devs will hear the call loud and clear. Everything went as planned.
  • I like the windows mobile ui over either of the alternatives, but this retrenchment strategy, the abandonment of my phone (HTC one M8) for windows mobile 10, and my need to keep using Verizon (rural residence) have left me no choice but to change ecosystems.
  • My wife's ICON is still a very decent phone. You have a choice.
  • The abandonment of the one M8 is what's going to drive me to another platform very soon. This is not a good signal that they are committed to the platform, and the lack of major apps across the W10 and phone platforms mean I have to spend my hard earned dollars where I know things will work better for me. Wake up, MS. Commitment means you support other manufacturers even if you disagree with some of their business practices.
  • I think people are waiting to see what the Surface Phone will bring. If it awaken people, things will flow down a positive path. If not, more apps will leave. The Surface phone will be key here.
  • Hopefully that will be sooner than the mid-2017 date mentioned here the other day.
  • No such thing as a "Surface" phone nor will there ever be. Microsoft CEO isn't that keen on its mobile game and hasn't been since before Balmer left and even Balmer had a tepid interest in phones when everyone else was joining the new frontier.  When he finally looked at it, he gave us the Kin. We heard it would be 2017 before anything happened and now its LATE 2017 before we see anything. WHY? If there is anything, it will be for business.
  • It's very difficult to follow where you're headed with your comments. You have stated, "no such thing as a Surface phone, nor will there ever be (and) if there is anything, it'll be for business" at the same time.
  • If you read this site with any regularity, 'it will be for business' is hardly an earth shattering conclusion. I'm pretty sure everyone reading this thread is operating on exactly that expectation and yet still have a willingness to consider such a device. Sign me up now.
  • Just have to hope that developers are also 'retrenching' and not just ditching the platform for good.
  • Devs burned by Nadella won't come back. Fool me once etc.
  • Not true.  Companies generally don't make decisions like that based on emotion, but rather based on ROI.  If they see an increase in market share they'll be back.
  • Yeah, sure. Look at Snapchat. The founder basically hates Microsoft products.
  • So your one exception is supposed to nullify my point?
  • vincentwantsink,  The market share would have to grow to beyond 20% to even start to entice dev's back.  Plus,  MS taking 30% compared to the 18% of the other two,  makes it hard to "entice" dev's to the MS app ecosystem.  MS is being run by Satya......RUN RIGHT INTO THE GROUND.....Someone mentioned stock prices?  they are inflated by the amount of money MS is saving by fireing 3/4 of their workforce.  That will to soon nosedive like the OS market share.
  • "The market share would have to grow to beyond 20% to even start to entice dev's back" Really?  Then how do you explain all the apps we currently have when we peaked at 3.5% market share?
  • Ms is telling developers to create apps on Windows so they can redirect their resources away from ios/android. This way ms can make more apps on ios/android and get a head start in competing where it matters.
  • Myfitnesspal leaving really angered me. There is just nothing as good as it on the store for tracking diet and weight. Fat Secret, Nutrition Hub, and Fitbit are missing so many of its features. I wish someone would make an app that could port over all of its features. Also, it has been really tough losing Mint, MLB At Bat, and several other apps. Plus not having my bank app (US BANK) is a big bummer. Unfortunately I will probably head over to Android for my next phone even though I would prefer to stick with Windows.
  • Just watch tv or look at a magazine everybody has apps for iPhone and Android none for Windows. McDonald's doesn't even got a app for windows . I got a Lumia 1520 but those Nokia Android phones coming out look tempting.
    I don't know why that Android app Microsoft had to use Android apps on Windows was cancelled by Microsoft that was a great idea everybody would be happy on their Windows phones. Instead looks like Windows phone will die a slow death.
    As for the surface phone who knows if it'll even happen or if its just rumor.
  • could you make a list of these features?
  • Endomondo is really good.  I much prefer it over MyFitnessPal.
  • Endomondo is abandonware and not very stable on W10M.
  • I'm thinking of building a replacement for mfp
  • Microsoft is like Leicester City. Putting their heads down, ignoring the noise around them, with their eyes on the goal.
  • z8er,  If their goal is 0% market share for mobile,  and decreasing market share in the desktop and tablet space,  then Yes...they totally have their eyes on the goal!  down in flames!
  • They need to offer developers 100% of the revenue generated for at least a year or two. MS can't be earning very much from the store right now, so they can't lose that much. It's the only way to get developers on board.
  • +1520
  • Agreed.
  • Totally agree. I've been saying this forever. Instead of spending 10 billion on buying 1 stupid app, they should just do this for a few years.
  • Or spending 26.9 billion on business facebook (linkedin),  they should have used that money in pushing everything forward.  But I know why they did it.  To datamine it to make profits from selling personal info and data.   Another reason stocks are up....
  • Personally, I think MS should require all Garage apps to be ported to WM. That way developers can see that Islandwood works and realize they won't have to start from scratch. Unless its been dumped, then oh well.
  • You, sir, are a genius. Sadly, MSFT are not, so it wont happen...
  • That's a novel concept.  Promote your own platform first.  Huh.  crazy, but you might be onto something there.
  • That's how Apple and Google did it so why should Microsoft be exempt from that!!?!
  • I guess my sarcasm didn't translate into text.
  • Microsoft's public communications has been a desaster ever since.  In this respect MS often behaves like an elephant trying to dance a tango
    not believing the damage that it left was all their fault. Microsoft just does not get it how to do good public communications. 
    They are more busy with their internal office politics
    rather than doing a good job facing the outside world.   
  • Microsoft services are not available worldwide,bing,groove music,xbox. Even Apple music is better for Baltics users.
  • Can't say anything about Apple - never used it, but its true. Why no support for Baltics. I mean they ripped Skype from Estonia and slowly destroyed it. They are in debt for this and shoud make good on Estonia...
  • exactly , tilling every one the the Mobile is not you first priority is bad press
  • I have no idea why you were downvoted. I really like your elephant analogy. I think it's very apt.
  • For a start MS needs to blitz their strategy, and actually focus on their mobile platform. I've been a loyal Windows Mobile user since the WP7 was announced, and I really don't want to leave the ecosystem, but I'm getting really close to throwing a towel. There has not been a direct mobile push, in fact it feels like Lumia 950 series was released out of pity, to keep their loyal fans at base. Granted, I do own a Lumia 950 XL and use as a daily driver, but what other Windows flagship device has been released in its two year span? And I'm not just talking about Microsoft, abut any other company that have ties with the Windows platform.
    And yes, Surface Phone on the horizon, but what difference will it actually make on the Windows Mobile team if there still won't be any support other than firmware? It feels like to me and maybe even Microsoft, that the Surface Phone may be the last final push, all or nothing type of a situation.
  • Same here. Gone from an HTC HD7 to a 920 then 930. Loved WP7 and 8. 10 is glorious when it works but has too many bugs that are irritating me daily.
    My contract ends in three weeks and the bugs, lack of desirable hardware and the ever worsening app situation means I'm about 90% certain to jump ship. MS need to reveal a surface phone asap.
  • Agree. They sold me on continuum and what's its capabilities are and you can't do anything on it. No apps support continuum
  • Jamboozler,  sounds familiar hey?  RT ring a bell?   That is exactly what continuum is,  windows RT in a different set of clothes....except there are less apps available for it.  No X86 program support which was touted with (full desktop exeprience).  Its a gimmick,  to sucker in enterprise business when they finished bamboozling the consumer with RT and the surface (non pro)....
  • The xbox opening up to UWP is and should be a considered to be a huge new market for devs. If they embrace UWP it would dramatically increase their market reach. Alas, the way I see it, a section of developers have for the most part made their mind about MS and UWP and refuse to do expand their markets even though such an effort would be trivial due to the fact that they wouldn't actually start from scratch.
    This is such a shame because W10M is still my fav OS by a wide margin. 
  • I thought this would bring a bunch of apps on board as well, but apps are made for the XBONE and they aren't universal, or at least never end up on the store for mobile...
  • Xbox is tiny. A couple of ten million while apps are mobile first.
  • Mobile form factor may survive but not the way we interact and communicate. Msft is way ahead of the league.
  • Whatever you said, my friend.
  • I don't think this will be the case. In reality the number of Xbox One's in use is probably around the same or less than Windows phone. It's just that this small number makes up 40% of the console market share where as windows phone makes up only 1-2% of the total smartphone market share. A few quarters ago Lumia was outselling Surface but again as Surface makes up a high % of the Tablet market share, has a higher profit margin and other OEM copying it, it is a success.
  • I believe there are far more Xbox One's in use than you probably think there are
  • This is exactly what you get when a company tells everyone that mobile is not a priority, our OS is not ready and that we are retrenching for the foreseeable future. If MS doesn't care, why would anyone else?
  • The C.E.O. of Microsoft is nuts
  • Nutella
  • Indeed
  • Stop "spreading" rumors...
  • We can pretend it's a chicken and egg problem, but for at least 3 years now the problem has been that there are no chickens. In other words, phones. Hard to get market share when there are no phones in the stores. And that's not because of lack of apps.
  • Truth. I'm on my third attiv s neo due to sprint having no options, and att having data caps. i was going to go with the 950 but they keep putting out refurb models with heating issues. Puts me right off. and the plan now...hang on to my broken old ativ another year on the off chance they produce a surface phone...like I did with the 950..or get a 950 with 50\50 chance it'll have issues and it'll be out of date halfway through my contract.     no options!
  • I can recommend getting a "clean Android" phone like the Nexus or Moto X Pure Edition and using Microsoft services on it until a decent Windows Phone is out. That's what I did and I'm very happy. I'm hoping to be able to come back when a "Surface Phone" comes out. Until then, or if not, I'll stick with Android + Microsoft apps.
  • Back in the day Microsoft had a saying, "eat your own dog food" and the main brand of dog food was Windows.  While UWP is in line with the Windows dog food concept, Windows no longer be the main brand of dog food at Microsoft.  It appears services is the main brand of dog food.  It is possible to use an Android or iOS device and access all of the Microsoft services but Google and Apple do not provide their services on UWP.  Would Microsoft consider withholding their services on the other devices until UWP is supported?  No, which is why UWP may die.  I have the new SiriusXM Win 10 app on my Surface 3 but they haven't release a Win Mo version for my phone.  We may see more situations like that.
  • But no one bought the phones when they did have them available. Why continue creating phones that no one buys? It is just a waste of money. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • MikeSo,  There are not chickens,  and very few Eggs other than half boiled, craked 3rd party eggs.  
  • This is so true. I'm still sportin' my trusty old Lumia 1520. I've been hanging on, waiting, hoping, maybe even praying. With the Anniversary Update running on my 1520, to me at least, it feels and behaves like the OS is finally 'there'. Where it needs to be (or needed to be 2 years ago) at least. So much promise, but the missing apps. The leaving apps. After being a day-one adopter via the Samsung Focus back in the day, last night I put in a pre-order for an iPhone 7 Plus. I'll see how I do with iOS. I can always come back if things improve, right?
  • I was doing the same thing with my lumia 630. hanging on, waiting for something better that never appeared. in the end, the phone was slow even after resets, windows 10 will not work on it, and my wife got a samsung galaxy S7 edge to replace her S5, so her old galaxy S5 was just the motivation I needed and I jumped ship.
  • I predict you're going to hate iOS.
  • I would advise not getting an iPhone 7 unless you know about the missing headphone jack, the specs themselves aren't much different from the iPhone 6S, apart from the camera having a better zoom and water resistance
  • I would advise the iphone 7 because it comes with the included headphone adapter for the people who are still not using wireless headphones,  and it has all apps, devices and accesories support.  Its awesome. and its the fastest phone available.  Specs racing is a joke.  Real world performance tells all,  hell the 6s was the fastest phone out of any phone doing real world stuff,  now the 7 is much faster...and more efficent as well...
  • Why are you even on Windows Central when all you spout is your total and utter hatred for anything Microsoft. There's a place for that called Apple Insider!!!!!
  • If uwp apps can build and windows 10 core is same why cant they allow .exe files to install on mobile...if it's possible then we can install chrome.exe with out google permission as it works as desktop exe in mobile environment..
  • then we r no longer able to say windows phones are safe.
    Windows Phone security is top notch, says Kaspersky. if MS somehow allow apps to install .exe files then its very easy to infect ur mobile. There is actually diff. b/w a phone and a pc.
  • Simple ARM. ARM chips cannot run x86 programs and x86 apps access a different set of APi's that are not available on ARM. It would be possible but every program developer would need to adjust update their .exe program to work on ARM chips, which would defeat the purpose. The other option is to use an Intel chip in the phone but this presents other issues such as battery life and heat.
  • Then they should have build custom processor instead of investing time how to build developers to platform uwp etc etc.
  • To work on phone, apps have to be compiled to target the processor architecture of the device which, at the moment, is ARM. That is why they currently don't work.
  • I absolutely love Windows 10 on every device including phone. I have a fully automated home with Security cameras and systems, automated pool and lighting systems and automated thermostats...and I run all of it beautifully on my Windows 10 phone and devices. Yes, some companies do not supply apps, but I am not missing any of them...I simply purchase goods and services that have apps supporting Windows 10. Everyone I know is amazed with what I am doing on my phone and when they ask what phone I have and I tell them Windows they are surprised because everything I do seems to work better than what they try to do including Cortona integration across all my pcs tablets and phones. Maybe it is just what I do, but it is a lot and it works easy for me. I watch people fumble around with android or IOS and it is funny. I will likely purchase an X3 soon to bridge the gap to a surface phone...and I will purchase a surface phone when it is released.
  • I found it striking as I was reading this.  I don't WANT for any apps on my phone. I don't play games on my phone and the only social media I care about is facebook.  I have recently been feeling like MORE apps I want are being added to the platform, some that were previously broken are now getting more and more frequent updates.  Maybe I'm just missing it or I'm just not angry enough but I'm much more satisfied with the state of Win10 mobile that I every have been before.  Only complaint is still its connectivity issues with the MS Band 2...but that seems to be just a few of us.  I have literally NEVER met another person with a band besides the people that work at teh MS store...and they clearly just wear them for their work hours becasue they have no idea how to use them.  "This thing has a keyboard?!"  Sigh.
  • I have the Band 2, but you're right, you just don't see them out in the wild.  Could it be a lack of advertising?  .... Nah, advertising doesn't work....does it?
  • Um.... you may not want apps for WM but 99% of us would LOVE to have more apps.
     
  • I have a band, what is the issue you're having?
  • Tbh Microsoft refusing to make any apps that people really needed didnt help at all. It wouldn't have taken that much and could have got them a lot more users. Too damn stubborn. and all the ******* about with messaging since windows messenger 6-7, pulling integrated messaging from the mobile and half including Skype etc. Bad moves.
  • Which apps would you want Microsoft to make?
  • Well its good to see Jason looking at the current situation in Microsoft's Mobile division from us angry fans perspective. Hopefully in a future article you'll be able to get some input from Belfiore (now that he's back) about the company's plans for 2017.
  • ​To proclaim Microsoft was retrenching, in other words cutting back and paring down in the Windows Mobile space was to take the first massive swipe at their own plan. Then simultaneously they took the second massive swipe by ramping up a huge effort to place everything they have on competing operating systems, and in many cases more feature rich apps. This was a one-two sucker punch to their own face. You would have to be a massively imcompetent CEO to not see what would happen. Microsoft has given themselves two black eyes that the industry has stated, well ok this is what you wanted, now revel in it. I love what Satya has done everywhere else but this was complete incompetence on a devastating scale.
  • How are they more feature rich on other platforms? I have recently switched to Android and I am finding many area's where Windows mobile has better features in some cases, pretty much all others there is feature parity. Take the Outlook app for example on Android I cannot edit reoccuring calender entries, cannot format text in email, I also can't postpone a calendar reminder from the notification. The Onenote app only just got the ability to open password protected notes this week.
  • Retrenchment and focus on cross-platform apps may be frustrating in the short term, but whether these strategies are incompetent remains to be seen. Until very recently, W10M has been too unstable and incomplete to market heavily and build many new devices for. As for putting major resources into iOS and Android apps, for Microsoft to survive at all--especially in the mobile space, its apps MUST have a strong foothold on the platforms currently used by almost 99% of consumers. These strategies require patience.
  • Ms is doing a terrible job on the mobile side. No commercial what so ever and when a new function is on the way to the platform they first says it will be working everywhere but then later only USA and GB... just as voice commands on the Xbox one.. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Microsoft / WC NEED to kill off Windows Mobile. There is a 'stigma' attached to it. There is a perceived 'we are better than you' because we use iOS and Android, thus 'we are superior in both intelligence and bragging rights'. As for apps, WP once again appears as a car crash and its no big surprise that share has dropped, and devs have had enough. W10M has the 'potential' for greater things. The trouble is MS didn't know where that lay. I bought a 950xl the day they came out. I, like everyone else who bought one, ended up with a device that was basically given some really cool stuff, Windows Hello, Continuum etc, and forgot to tell us we were the R&D department for them. It's taken 9 months to get the 9 series working as they should, and still Hello is poor. If you were a Dev, amd you had seen this, what would you think? You've got apps that could use both systems, and after all that time, they still aren't brilliant. Then, to top it off, MS run away and hide in a cupboard for a year retrenching, AKA, " Where the fugg do we go from here?" I hope they do give the phones over to the Surface dept, but it will have to be sure that it won't taint the well received Surface brand. MS have offered an insight into what a mobile can do, as mentioned in the piece, Apple and most Android OEM's just reinvent the wheel. Whilst on the Android subject, has anyone used Samsung's biometrics? I bet it works more efficiently than ours. According to mine, I have no eyes! We now have a few OEM's on board but, unless its a big player, or something that changes the game, the struggle will continue for both Devs and users. Let's see how the HP project works out, although game Devs probably won't be interested as they are business focused. I'll stick out as WM10 works brilliantly in my business and has never let me down.
  • This articles draws a lot more positive and true to the heart comments from the fans and users.
  • Nadella doesn't use a Windows Phone so why would he care? MS goal is not Mobile but cloud that's why the OS would continue to tilt towards PC. I don't see any change even if the Surface Phone does come alive, what's the beauty of a phone packed with all the cutting edge techs running on a buggy OS with no quality apps?!
  • Why should people put up with a buggy OS when all the MS are on iOS and are better anyways? Nadella uses an iPhone because when hes making multi-million/billion dollar deals the last thing he wants is random reboots and constant app crashes on his phone.
  • True, but it doesn't make you want to use W10M when not even the CEO uses or has faith in it!!!
  • It doesn't help when Microsoft drip some of the apps that made them stand out from the crowd; beamer and photo beamer etc. I took my brother into a phone shop the other day to look for a budget phone to replace his dumb phone. There were a couple of cheap android phones and a Lumia 550. The guy in the phone shop said he wouldn't recommend the 550 as it would be a dead platform within the next two years. Who is going to get a phone on an OS that the phone shops don't recommend even though in my personal opinion the 550 was a better phone than any of the budget android phones. Posted via the Windows Central app
  • Jason, I appreciate your articles and optimism. I just can't be as optimistic, especially because my biggest gripe with their strategy is not that there is a phase of retrenchment, but what exactly retrenchment entails. The best thing I can do is offer this analogy: Microsoft is a parent, and Windows Mobile is their kid. Microsoft's house is falling apart and they can no longer adequately provide for their kid, so they need to temporarily shift some resources to focus on the house (UWP). How do they handle this transition? They stick their kid in a closet. For a year. They spend a year rebuilding the house. When they finally are ready to go back and check on their child, they open the closet door to find a skeleton. "Oh." Probably should have at least kept that kid alive and capable of regaining health once resources would be available again. House seems somewhat less useful now, no? Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Ouch! That is a horror scene right there.
  • This analogy is very colorful and popular I see. :) But it would be more accurate to say the child has been on the operating table in intensive care than abandoned in a closet. Work on W10M features and stability have continued at a furious pace. The child is not back outside running around yet, but its vital signs are looking a lot better.
  • I love windows phone when it sucked , so i ll keep using it got a lumia 950xl and wil upgrade later to the HP elite when it drops price
  • Six years since WP7 launched and we're still talking about Microsoft's lack of progress in mobile. Sadly I think that says it all, competitors are moving ahead while Microsoft is going in circles. No strategy, no vision and more importantly no passion from the company and it shows in the numbers. And that seems to be the way things are going for the next few years as well.
  • lovely article , a yearly flagship that compete with iPhone and galaxy will help the UWP instead of just relaying on the windows 10 pc and xbox to attract developers , Microsoft needs to release something truly amazing just like the surface line
  • But isn't it too late for that now? Ballmer and Elop did better than this, at least the enthusiasm kept the fans
  • Not really, Lumia 950XL is much better IMO than many Android flagships of 2016 from HTC, Huawei, ZTE. The only 4 brands that beat Lumia 950XL are Sony with the Xperia Z5 Premium, Samsung with Galaxy S7 Edge, Apple with iPhone 7 and LG with the V20
  • Not true cuz. Those other android phones worked out of the box. The 950xl only came into full working order four months after release. The beta software of Nov 2015 was met with justified anger from the fans and derision from phone reviewers. So as much as Samsung has suffered a blow with their exploding Note 7 so too did MS with their half baked 950xl launch.
  • Have to say I'm with Mad Cabbie on this one... I had the 950XL on day one, and until the last couple of months I regretted the decision to "upgrade" from the L1520 every single day. The L1520 worked, the L950XL just didn't. The hardware failed 3 times and I'm on my fourth handset now. That's a big deal. Then the promised land of the Univeral App, that would bring the big-hitters to Windows 10...only it didn't. Sure, I like the Instagram app now, but it's not Universal and only works on mobile and a number of apps I did use are now gone. I heard today that MS has openly admitted Lumia is finished and with no alternative that means the poor suckers like me who kept the faith when the 950XL was announced have committed to a dead platform, only we didn't know it at the time - had we done, we'd probably have moved to Android or iOS. You know things have hit rock bottom when an app for a smart thermostat gets a dedicated article on this website the week Mario appears on iOS! Still had to wait nearly two years for a BT Sport app though... WP7, WP7.5, WP7.8/WP8, WP8.1, WP10...five/six generations of Windows Phones and MS has screwed up five of them at least. I know there was a time when it seemed the global marketshare was around the 8% mark but that was a long time ago and MS has completely shafted the most loyal customers it has; those who have stuck with WP despite them dropping the ball constantly. Mad Cabbie is right, sadly, there's a stigma attached to Windows Mobile and with no new handsets in the offing, unless there's something quite incredible around the corner there is no reason to keep ripping people off. What I have never been able to understand is why MS didn't just tell the main devs "we'll make the apps for you" to get them on the platform? Am I wrong in thinking MS has something of a legacy when it comes to software? 
  • Great Article as always.. i'm developer and we are building UWP app for Iran post office. and we are making UWP game for windows 10 that will release FEB 2017
  • Thanks Mani. Glad to see your support of the platform! :-)
  • If MSFT had taken 5% of what they have written off for mobile and used that to push (subsidize) the adaptation of Windows 10 mobile, we would be having a very different discussion now. MSFT's abandonment of the low end of the mobile market was a huge mistake, in my opinion, since that was where the growth was for the last three or four years, particularly in Asia and E. Europe. If they had been willing to capture initial marketshare for profitability, they could have an installed base that would sustain the ecosystem. You can't have an ecosystem without, you know, an eco.  
  • They went for the low end and even then they never broke 4% market share worldwide. That isn't a sustainable business and that ~3.6% they did capture didn't upgrade to better Windows phones. They went Android or iOS when the time came. Nokia was out and Microsoft really had no option. Understandably, continuing to sink money into a guaranteed failure isn't what they chose. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Microsoft has to decide 2 things going forward to save Mobile business: iOS Bridge, is it still going forward, or it will be cancelled like Astoria in 2015 Intel based Windows Mobile phones so Continuum can let desktop apps run natively inside your phone, is this going to happen? Or Continuum will just be another Windows RT with no support other than Microsoft's apps which by the way are excelent.
  • Gabriel,  IOS bridge (lslandwood), is proven to be NON succsessful in bringing apps to w10.  Intel stopped their production of Mobile x86 based chips,  therefore unless someone else decides to make a chip,  Continuum is a gimped RT with no support.  again,  Dead in the water after the ship sunk.  
  • The iOS bridge hasn't even been released officially yet and you're already claiming it to be "NON successful"!!!!
  • Shows just how "on the ball" Microsoft is then.  The iOS bridge was touted before w10 was released.  Time to get that on the go dont ya think?   ANoher absolute failure by Microsoft waiting.  They are a hopeless lost cause.  So yes.   I am already claiming it as a unsuccessful failure.  Just like everything Microsoft in the past couple of years over promise and underperform.  
  • It's in a preview release, how do you think some of the apps came across to W10M in the first place. But I'm done with you as all you do is spout your hate for ALL things Microsoft so why even bother to comment on here?
  • OK, here we go:   "Currently, Windows phone is indeed alive and kicking, but many developers consider Windows only as an afterthought, if at all. Even worse, there are those who have supported the platform, and seemingly as a second thoughtdecided the platform was not worth continued investment." So:  - User-base is in constant decrease with marketshare bellow 1% (as you admited); - Developers don't come or came and went (as you also admited); But Windows Phone is "alive" because...? Because some a few people still use it? Because it gets some updates from Microsoft? Sure. It's "alive". I'm also glad to know that BB10 is alive, Symbian is alive and so are Nokia's Series 30 and 40. To everyone else though, I'm sorry Jason, but Windows Phone is dead. If consumers don't buy into it, if developers don't support it, it's dead. To continue with the mantra that "it's afloat" "It's still kicking" etc is being just as deluded as the people who, on board the Titanic, refused to believe that the ship was sinking.   "Windows Mobile is strategically buoyed by its position as part of the broader Universal Windows Platform." Yes, and just like you said, there's the "relatively weak developer support that has plagued Microsoft's mobile platform and now the broader Universal Windows Platform of which it is a part." Why is the UWP not gatherin as much developer support as Microsoft expected? Because, again, UWP benefits mainly mobile. It doesn't matter how many Windows 10 PCs or laptops there when are 99% of people who use them don't use Windows apps. So why would developers bother creating a Windows app to replace their x86 program that they already have OR to put in the service that most of the people on PCs and laptops use through a browser? It's a waste of money. UWP would benefit mainly mobile. And when developers look at mobile, they see <1% marketshare.   "Microsoft envisions' a future for its phones. In a memo to OEM partners in May of this year (...) and we'll help drive demand for Lumia devices."   You're still grasping to memo's from May? Ignoring EVERYTHING that has happened since, specially in regards to Microsoft's mobile division? Seriously? Just because Microsoft keeps releasing small updates to W10M, it doesn't mean it has a future. They're doing it because, as you said, it's one core and they're developing Windows 10 for the PC. W10M updates are just a byproduct of that, nothing else. They clain in 2017 there will be a push on mobile. I'm prepared to bet there won't. Why? Pretty simple. By 2017, the amount of WP users remaining will be so low that even for Microsoft it will be a waste of money to keep developing it. And if their push unto enterprise with devices like the HP Elite X3 fails - as it's possible - then they will absolutely call it quits and finally pull the plug on W10M putting an end it its artificial "life". Specially when, as you correctly pointed out, Microsoft already has plan B (Microsoft services on Android and iOS) in motion and it's going way way better than plan A.   There's no "retrenchment". The "retrenchment" only exists in your head, Jason. What exists is a sinking ship and Microsoft lowering the lifeboats. In one of them is the enterprise. In the other two are Android and iOS. And if the enterprise capsizes, there's only the remaining two lifeboats.   "Even the recently announced iPhone 7, "the best iPhone yet", remains (in my opinion) on a dead-end course of incremental advancements rather than meeting the transformative needs of the current paradigm shift." Using the iPhone as a measurement of technological advancement is a bit ridiculous. There's nothing advances about Apples iCrap devices. Apple's formula has been the same for years (and it works): release 3 year old hardware and sell it to iDiots as if it was the last Coke on the desert. Take the iPhone 7 as an example: - Waterproofing? WOW! Such innovation! Welcome to 2011 Sony. - 6 cores? OMG! Welcome to 2014. - Oh I know! It's the corageous remove of the headphone jack. That's it. Now pay 160 dollars when you lose those Air Pods.   Here's the deal. There's NO demand for a "paradigm shift". You talk about it, you claim that's what Microsoft is aiming at. Well, I highly doubt Microsoft is trying to catch Big Foot. 'cause that's what the "paradigm shift" is. Smartphone specs in the real world - ie. on Android - are in constant evolution AS are the form factors of those phones. You have curved edges, dual cameras, modules etc being introduced. Why? Well, because for one, otherwise the smartphone market will go the route of the PC market and people will stop buying them annually or every 2 years. And secondly because people are doing more and more on their phones. HOWEVER, that doesn't mean they're looking to replace them with something else. And because no one is looking to replace the smartphone with something else OR demanding to have Windows on their smartphone, there's no "paradigm shift" for Microsoft to cling to on mobile. Yes, people may want to replace their laptops with a phone that does the same. HOWEVER, they will stil want the mobile apps that they've enjoyed. And guess what? Windows doesn't offer it. And if you think people will abandon Android or iOS just because they might want to hook up their phone to a larger screen to do some work, you're wrong. They'll sooner abandon Windows. Because EVEN if there's a move towards AI and bots (and I don't think there is) people will still demand the same mobile experiences they're used to. Developers who dropped Windows Phone or the UWP are not losing on anything. Because they, better than you or me or even Microsoft apparently, know consumers. They know what their customers are demanding from their apps and services. If there was any shift as you keep hoping there is, they'd know it. And EVEN if that miraculous shift happens, it's not a guarantee that Microsoft is in a position to leader. On the contrary. If that shift happens, it will be mobile-based. And if it's mobile based, it will be the company with the largest mobile presence to be better positioned. And that's Google.   "Still, the apps are gone, more may leave, and that's not a good thing." More WILL leave. Otherwise, we agree here.   "Those who resist this perspective have likely not fully embraced the implications of a universal platform." No. Those who "resist" it have fully realised that the UWP, as I've already said, benefits mainly mobile and mobile alone. When Myerson pushes mobile aside to try and sell UWP to developers, it's in an attempt to prevent developers from realising what UWP actually benefits. And he may momentarily succeed. But once developers put out a UWP and start looking at which form factor uses the apps more, they quickly realise that those 350 million Windows 10 PCs aren't it. And with Windows 10 growth abruptly stopping once the free upgrade went away (as it was more than predictable), it will no get any better. Let's look at which devices benefit from the UWP apps: PC, Xbox, mobile, "HoloLens". Now let's see how many of those are RELEVANT platforms: PC. Now let's see in which of those platforms are users more likely to use apps: mobile. HoloLens is completely irrelevant. No one has it, no one uses it apart from some developers. So let's forget it even exists. Xbox: the Xbox is a mix. It can benefit from UWP GAMES and SOME apps like Groove, Pandora or YouTube (...oh wait). But who's the idiot who'll use things like "Maps" on their Xbox? Or Facebook? Or Twitter? People use the Xbox for gaming and for media consumption. But UWP games would be ridiculous on the Xbox. The Xbox has its own games that can, at best, run on PCs and nowhere else due to hardware limitations). As for media consumption, the Xbox has its own YouTube app and has had other media consumption apps without the UWP. And on PCs people don't use apps. So...what's left for the UWP? Mobile. I'm repeating myself now.   And developers leaving the platform after being in just proves the point. If they invested and see it's not worth it, it means that the UWP whilst a nice idea, isn't really worth it as users don't care. Does it send a signal to other developers? Yes it does. But what were you expecting? That developers would waste money just to keep up appearences?    "other developers are inclined not to invest in the platform and the UWP is perceived as a failure." If Windows 10 users aren't using apps, then the UWP is already a failure. It's not a question of perception. It's a question of usage. UWP has been around for a while. People haven't embraced it and therefore neither have developers. Specially when, again, UWP benefits mainly a platform with <1% of marketshare.   "It is perceived as a virtual slap in the face when developers who helped build the ecosystem reject it and by proxy the users that remain who valued that developers app." Is it? If developers come to a platform with, potentially, 350 million users, and from those 350 million only 1 million use their app, is it really a virtual slap? Users didn't care for the app. So the developer left. By that logic, a bigger slap is given to Symbian users when the OS was dropped. Yes, fans will be angry. But do you really think developers will care about the feelings of a bunch of people on Windows Central and other blogs? They don't. As they shouldn't. Keep wasting money just to not hurt the feelings of a couple of fanboys? That'd be the day.   "Given the many years invested in bringing the UWP to fruition I doubt that a year of negative press, some departing apps, and negative commentary will dissuade the company from doing all it can to ensure the UWP succeeds." I don't think Microsoft is going to quit trying to puch UWP. HOWEVER, to make it succeed, they have to rethink it and they can start by casting aside mobile.   "More to the point what can they do to keep developers from leaving?" There's the mistake. Microsoft shouldn't be trying to keep developers from leaving. They've been sucking up to developers for years *insertBallmerGifHere* when what they should be doing is pushing users to USE the apps. For example, WHY on earth should I use the Outlook app when I can just use it through the same browser I can access Facebook,Twitter, YouTube etc...? What have Windows apps to offer me EXTRA that I can't get through a browser or a normal x86 programm? Currently the answer is: nothing. Even notifications, Chrome has them. And because there's nothing compeling pushing me to use Windows apps, I don't. And because I don't, developers don't see user interest. And so they end up leaving. The biggest enemies of Windows apps is Windows itself and the browser. As long as I can do through a browser everything when not more than I can through an app, I will have no interest in an app. Take Facebook for example. Why would I bother with the Facebook app when I can have a far better experience through the browser? That's what Microsoft should be concerned about. How to even justify the existence of apps on Windows. So far, they've not managed to do it. And so long as that remains, UWP will never go anywhere. (NOTE: If you've read this far, congratulations! :P)
  • I only read your first paragraph.  Too many words after that. Anyway, to answer your question, regardless of market share, Windows mobile will be alive as long as Microsoft continues to support it with updates and new development.  When Microsoft says it's dead, then it's dead, not sooner.
  • It's rare to see anyone self diagnose their own death. According to legends only Jesus did that XD
    Windows Mobile is dead as is Symbian OS and Blackberry OS. All these platforms have an insignificant number of users - hence they are described as dead.
  • Blackberry and Symbian are dead because their respective companies have decided to stop supporting them, not because they have an insignificant number of users.  One may be the result of the other, but you can't skip a step.  It's the company that decides when the product is dead, not you, and not the developers, and not a million tech writers around the world.
  • Actually, Blackberry did NOT announce the end of support for BB10. On the contrary. The CEO killed BB10 handsets (like Microsoft killed their mobile division and the Lumia line) and said they'd support BB10 for at least 2 more year (until 2018 at least). Microsoft has also the end of support for Windows 10 Mobile scheduled for September 2018 (https://support.microsoft.com/en-us/lifecycle/search?sort=PN&alpha=Windo...) As such, so far, I see no difference between BB10 and Windows 10 Mobile.
  • No difference between BB10 and Windows 10 Mobile?  How about the fact that one company has started producing Android handsets and the other has not.  Big difference.
  • Yes and one is actually selling phones with a great os on it and the other is Microsoft.  
  • Good point @vincent and @spazzmiester With continued investment in development if the OS, OEM support and MS support of OEM partners and the fact Windows Mobile in intrinsically part of the UWP, Windows phone is not dead. Microsoft is still developing and supporting the platform. Also a cessation of Lumia is a ending of that line if first-party phones. If MS goes along with plans as we expect, first-party phones will be under the Surface team and name rather than Lumia. So, no, Windows phone is not dead. :-)
  • Windows mobile has support in the same way that saturn cars have support.   I.E.  a few left in the junk yard for parts.  No support from GM anymore.  IMO,  windows mobile is dead,  Microsoft has not come out publically because they still have devices left in the bank.  Once they are sold out...done!
  • Well Steve Adams, lucky for me then, unless your name is secretly Satya Nadella, your opinion counts for nothing.
  • The entire WinRT effort starting with WinRT80 was DOA (and UWP is just WinRT10). It didn't support Windows 7 which meant it had no user base for developers to target. It wasn't compatible with any Win32 code except for Direct3D, which meant developers would have to start from scratch. No users and no developers ... what could go wrong! :) That's just the business end of the WinRT debacle. I won't even go into the design and implementation issues. When I first read through the WinRT80 docs back in 2012 I yelled, "have they [MSFT] lost their minds?". Even now, if I went UWP with my Win32 programs I'd throw out at least 50% of my potential customers ... not to mention 30% of whatever sales I could generate. Compare that to my Win32 programs, which work with 100% of my customers machines and my reseller only takes 6%. Every single person responsible for the design and implementation of WinRT should be fired. They were and are incurably stupid.  
  • Exactly. Even Balmer has come out against UWP. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • DJCBS,  I agree with you 100%,  besides the Iphone comments...I moved from WP to IOS and it (iphone 6s),  is AWESOME!  But as I say,  when someone asks me about phones...I just say three Letters ABM.    Anything but microsoft.
  • Interesting read, but what you said in the last two paragraphs really hit the nail on the head. MS would just about need to deliberately cripple its desktop product in order for UWP to have a shot a relevance, and there's no way in hell they'll do that. Truly a matter of when, not if, with anything else MS does outside of the traditional Windows desktop products.
  • The biggest problem is even when developers are interested Microsoft is not helping them. Just read the developer blogs and see how some have shown interest in UWP to only find that Microsoft has sparse documentation making it difficult to impossible to develope the app. Ironically while they are not documenting their Windows tools they are heavily building and investing in tools and documentation for building apps for iOS and Android. Watch most recent videos of Visual Studio even and they say "let build and app for iOS and Android". Sometimes later on in the video they say it can be used to build Windows apps buy they don't demonstrate. They instead spend their time with examples of iOS and Android apps. How could a developer even build a UWP if Microsoft doesn't document?
  • MS had momentum with the Lumia series, then they dropped the ball. No follow up releases, slow releases, no advertising, catering to rival platforms first, and being bull headed.
  • That is because they didn't have momentum. None, at all. Not a single phone they ever released was even mildly successful. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • DJCBS, I think your analysis is perfect. I think that MSFT gave up on mobile and in the medium term it will become irrelevant in the retail market. It will become another IBM
  • Do not extend your theory to eveything MS does. It is a big mistake.  MS dared to compete in mobile from the last position. It managed something remarkable for a very little while, ((i.e. having higher market share than iPhone in some countries,)  but the media was hostile. MS didn't pay enough and tried to play clean only investing in traditional marketing. That didn't help. The fact that heading WP was someone who disliked the platform and the Lumia product didn' help either. When he left for a sabbatical  that was smoke and mirrors. He knew he failed and removed himself to avoid responsibilty. On the other hand, Micorosoft is in the leading pack on several fronts. Video Games, Home Computing, Tablet PCs, AR, and more... and is one of the leading developers of Mobile Software.  So no. MS has nothing to do with IBM. IBM is a dead many walking. They still exist mainly because of reaaaaally old software support contracts. Else IBM should have shut down by now.
  • MS was in the " last position" when the Motorola MPX was launched; it is hilarious to read these comments implying, incorrectly, that MS entered the smartphones market with WP, that was just another chapter after keep loosing market share for years thanks to lack of investments in the sector.
  • Selling a phone for one-tenth the cost of the iPhone in price conscious markets isn't amazing. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Developers who dance to Google and Apple's Tune, are riding a dead horse! UWP is the hottest platform ever created and the possibilities are endless. Devices who cares! It is the cloud and framework the fabric to build and create the greatest user experience. Surface phone is not ready! It won't be for sometime at least another year. but when it comes OMG it will be the most amazing device ever. A 5 in 1 with the ablitities Andriod and IOS could only dream of. A PC, Mobile Phone, Xbox, VR and AR. I am sure the HPU in hololens would be included among all the new ways people can use a device.
  • Whatever your smoking, I want some.
  • Yeah really.....those drugs with the rose colored windows has melted his mind!
  • Read his user name
  • I agree that App-Gap and App-Drainage are 2 key issues with adoption.  The Windows 10.1 update really makes it a solid OS but I think the hardware requirements are about a year away. Since the Lumia 950 launch what other Phone has there been in the US?  More importantly since 2014 what commercial campaign has been done? (https://youtu.be/YNXjqjYnBBA)   Nerd blogs aside there has been no attention given to Windows Mobile in the consumer space.  Not having a solid hardware ecosystem to build apps is not making it attractive to developers to build.  MS has to get to the point where devs include them in the conversation.  Having more than 1 dead phone model in a carrier store is possible. "Available in the Apple, Google, and Microsoft Stores" is possible. 
  • It will be interesting to see where this is going. I am keeping an eye closely at the education sector and things are looking promising with MSFT. I have some language apps which I moved from WP8.1 to UWP and I seem to have tripled my user base!
  • For a guy like me, who is using Wp as a primary device for last 3 years, it's not about the Apps. It's about the f***ing OS support from Microsoft! I don't care if there's no Pokemon go in windows store. But when I see Calendar tile not updating after 12am, unless I resize it, daily;
    when I open OneNote and it doesn't let me see my notes because of random sign in issues, and then I had to save important notes in a text file;
    when I have to specially open apps to remove notification icons from the lock screen;
    when I can't seem to pinch zoom my photos;
    when WC app crashes 20 times in a row;
    when I see all those small UI and performance bugs which are mentioned in feedbacks for months;
    and when I read rumors that Surface phone is delayed to late next fall while MS have no backup plans, I swear I believe w10m is truly screwed up. It's like they're doing all this according to a plan.
    There's no doubt with this behaviour they're not gonna have any 'fans' left. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • All that I can say, is that developers can sometimes very strange. Just look at the company I work at, Vodafone. They're working hard on bringing Vodafone Wallet (their own MS Wallet equivalent app) to Windows, but the app for their movie streaming service is still "in the works for Windows 8" (for almost half and a year now)... Given that Wallet is a mostly phone focused service, and Red Movies could be useful on PCs, Xbox, and HoloLens as well, not just phones, it's strange they prioritize the project, where they will more likely reach less customers... I think many developers don't even understand the benefits of UWP :D
  • They understand that Microsoft wants double the profits from their apps compared to the other two!  That plus the 50 or so users of the app,  means DOA.....Just like w10.
  • At least, learn how to understand text, please...
  • Actually I understand it just fine,  unlike yourself!
  • Than you didn't even read what I wrote... Troll :D
  • One. Please learn how to type proper English.  Two.   If you read what I said you would see why there is no development push.    Instead of calling names which is very immature,. Read what is actually put up next time.   Thanks.  
  • Read my f*ckin' comment finally... I'm tired of people who can't understand anything... I'm not a native English speaker, so maybe I make grammar mistakes. But I don't think my English is so bad, that it can't be understood :D I wasn't even talking about what you wrote in your reply... I said, that the company is bringing a 99% phone only app to Windows, instead of one, that could be used on all form factors, and could reach more users this way... They ARE developing an app for Windows, but it'll be most likely used by less people, than the other would be... And than, you came here talking about how MS cuts the profit of apps (which is bullsh*t btw), and you were talking about 50 users.... Maaaan..... Are you really this retarded, or are you just playing? You make me tired... And I'm not calling names. You wrote so many comments just to this article about the same bs, that you MUST be a troll. Period... :D Now go out, and play ;)
  • Microsoft Takes 30 percent of profits from apps....Google and Apple take 18%.  This comes from at least two different developers.  One on here,  and one I know personally!  Two,  I am not a troll,  I am a truth speaker.  There is a huge difference.  Everything I said was TRUE.   Its fanboys who don't like to hear the truth that get upset and call me a troll.  ALOT of diehard windows fans are actaully saying the exact same thing here that I have been saying for the past while.  
  • But still, no one was talking about how much profit MS takes. Just you... It's a mess. This thing is like, for example, I said "I like spaghetti", and than you told me "but it's cold in Norway". Your response is... Ah... I'm done with you "Mr Truth speaker"... I'm sure now, that you're just retarded... If they release one app on Windows (because they will), why is it the one with most likely much less users? Nobody was talking about android or iOS here...
  • The point is that developers will NEVER develop their apps for Windows 10 Mobile if people desert it for Android or iOS. So those of you who say "W10M has no apps I'm going to Android or iOS" aren't doing the platform any favours. However, Microsoft aren't doing the platform any favours either by releasing ALL the core apps on rival platforms, I get that Microsoft want their services everywhere but when we get nothing, and I do mean NOTHING, in return from either Apple or Google is it really beneficial for the platform in the long run? IMHO Microsoft should pull ALL their apps from rival platforms immediately and refocus on their own platform.
  • From all the comments I read on sites like these it seems a lot of Windows Mobile fanatics are happy with the OS or don't see anything wrong with it. So why does it matter if the marketshare increases. You are happy already anyway with the pink glasses on. There is no need to push your own technological dream to neighbours or friends. If you are happy with platform continue using is, 0.5% of 55% marketshare doesn't really matter on individual basis. In the past I have read many times that "it is gonna happen". Yet most in consumer products Microsoft fails or failed compared to the competition. Either they are too late or it's too barebones. Zune, Groove, XboxOne, Band, Windows Mobile, Kinect, ... Consumer products usually fail. Sure they sell, even a decent amount. But always behind the competition. What actually always wins is business oriented stuff: Office 365, SQL, SharePoint, Skype/Lync, Azure are all products that do extremely well. Windows 10 is basically the only crossover product between consumers and bussiness. For the record: I have a Windows 10 game PC that I love, an Android phone and iPad tablet. I don't like being locked down into one ecosystem or only buy one brand of product. I usually buy the hardware and specs that fits best with me. Software or ecosystem comes only second place.
  • There are fanatics, I hate that word so perhaps die-hards is better, when it comes to any platform why should Microsoft ones be singled out!!?!
  • Tremendous article and very balanced. I love this system but with Microsoft the way they are at the minute it has no hope, Absolutely none. They have this sticky plaster attitude to all their work, shoddy builds, fixes and updates, they fix 5 things and at the same build break 2/3. It's dreadfully flawed. I have been asked time and again when say in the train going to work and I'm using my main phone, 1520, "what is that, and what's that, is it Windows?" My 950xl is confined to the office shelf as its just too unreliable, great 'eye candy' for sure, but never ever could I say to anyone that I would recommend windows 10, It's just too unreliable. Going back to the main crux of the article on apps. Recently on the thread of pro shots new app, the same guy was messed around in a shocking manner by Microsoft, so bad that he had to personally come into the thread to apologise and explain what was happening, but, the most infuriating note was at the very top of the new thread when some idiot spouting off about why he should pay for this when he played for it on 8.1. It just went downhill from there, so how the hell can you win. A good quality app made by a dedicated developer hammered into the ground first go off. Crazy. I would dearly love this platform to work, it could and should be the best system out there, but with the current team at the head of this diminishing mess, It's impossible. Then you have a fan base that refuse to spend pocket change to make it better. It's loose and loose all round. Such a shame.
  • Your last part about users not wanting to spend pocket change to make it better. Yeah... It was so evident by the BLACK app scenario. Really sad, actually =/ Poor devs. and greedy users that want everything for nothing.
    Well, at least the most dedicated of finds the pocket change for what we want to succeed :)
  • "Three's a crowd" Really?  Hmm, let's see. 1. Windows. 2. OSX. 3. Linux. 4. ChromeOS. 5,6,7 (and a few smaller ones)   So No. Not really.
  • @Salazka That title "Three's a crowd" was not a statement that three actually IS a crowd and a third player has no place. It was a play on a popular cliche reflecting the dominance of iOS and Android and the difficulty of Windows Phone to become a relevant third horse. I think we would all love to add Windows Mobile as a relevant force on the list of Mobile players. :-) Thank for participating!
  • Microsoft want developers go away. They ask 30℅ of the price tag, Apple and Google 18℅.... Terryson lives in another world, or just sleeps.
  • Apple and Google take a 30% cut, too.
  • Venetasoft is a Dev.  He should know what cut everyone takes since he's developing!
  • Microsoft should start leveraging enterprise level client apps to grow, as ubiquitous among corporate clients and as a diffferentiating factor from Apple & Google who thrives in mobile but weak in desktop applications
  • Yes, but only for W10M
  • Good article
  • I was on a conference call with a company called 8x8 that advertises that their VOiP platform is fully integrated with Skype (its not). I asked if they had a windows phone app and they laughed. Seriously, and I'm the customer...I've tried to take a serious look at what I am missing about iOS and Android, but I'm at a loss..
  • While I don't get laughs I get the "you're kidding, right?" kind of reaction as well. I find it immature and short sighted. Not to mention rude and just bad customer/business interaction method. I am sure this will change, but right now, I clearly see why consumers don't want to experience this more than once and change to Android or iOS.
  • My sons play Xbox and have nothing but positive comments about the Universal Apps they have encountered thus far. I must confess I'm not a big consumer of apps in general. I use an iPhone for personal stuff because my family are all Apple fanatics and they act as if the sky is falling if they cannot FaceTime you & God forbid you send them a green text message. That said we are test driving a few HP Elite x3's for the companies I own. Why would the absence of apps for my employees to use on a device I'm providing matter? I think enterprise has a different perspective on phone functionality. I want a darn good & seamless Office Experience. I want them to be able to access software relevant to my business. However the absence of an employee's favorite social media app or fitness tracker is truly not a relevant consideration. I am happy with the direction of Microsoft from what I see so far. My perfect phone would be a phablet the size of the HP Elite x3 or maybe even slightly larger with an active stylus and the one-click option of pulling up OneNote. Give it a desk top dock for work in the office & a lap dock for productivity on the the go.
  • Sounds awesome Keith. Thanks for sharing!
  • Meh. It's dead. D.E.A.D. Sad because neither Apple nor any Android camera holds a candle to the technology and software that come with the 950/950XL (or the 1020 before it). At the end of the day, these are small screen devices whose computing ability is really ergonomically limited to tasks that apps can perform. No apps, no performance. With a 5%, 4%, 3%, 1% global share who would make money developing apps for it? No one! It's dead.  I will be able to, once I move to Android, to save $25 a month on car insurance because Android has an app for my insurer's OBDII plug-in. I'll even be able to pair the phone to the car's main screen to emulate navigation, messaging and other apps - so I don't have to pick up my phone while I am driving (I don't, by the way. I use a suction mount on the dash). Finally, I'll be able to save money on burritos from my favourite chain and groceries at my local market.  So, there is no money in Win 10 Phone for the developers - and not switching to one or the other two viable platforms actually costs Win 10 Phone users money. I hope that V20 camera output gets better in production than it has been in pre-production units. I will miss my Lumia cameras and Live Tiles  immensely. 
  • Windows phone will be getting more popular this year.
  • In non reality land maybe.  
  • Apps - What are Apps? - A remnant of a bygone age when phones were under powered and had screens the size of postage stamps. Don't use Apps use the real thing. Why bother with stores that have thousands of inferior Apps most of which are duplicates of each other. Be honest how many Apps do you really use? - well then!
  • "And we'll help drive demand for Lumia devices." Meanwhile, Microsoft's Lumia line will be killed off in December (http://www.gsmarena.com/microsofts_lumia_line_will_be_killed_off_in_dece...). Such irony.      
  • 4everforever,  Just one of many out right LIES that microsoft has told since the announcement of windows 10.  They are a joke!
  • Must have apps should be available. They are neglecting windows os Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • As has been said many times, are they shocked mobile is circling the drain when they don't promote it at all? Supposed flagship 950/950XL? Zero marketing. In fact, zero marketing for any and all phones. Surface phone? Only a rumor at this point. It may never happen. If they cant get a surface phone out in two years, since rumors came out, they really deserve what they get.
  • No normal consumer will ever consider Windows Phone without the apps they want or use. Common sense. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • The problem with UWP is that I don't feel the need of their existing on PC because I tend to open browser to get what I want. Further, I really hate the new start menu on desktop, it hinders the direct access to apps making it one step behind the door. Don't even think about making a shortcut of apps on the taskbar, I have already enough softwares running on it, don't want to mess it up.  They should try to hybrid the desktop, allowing it to pin UWP on the desktop just like a normal software.  Sometimes, small changes make big impact.
  • I am going to say in my view that I love WP UI and using since early 2013, so apps or not when the use is so easy and professional then there are far more better things to do than just use more and more apps and waste time.
    Use of apps are depended of d type of person and their demand but when the industry will change and u will help it change then d proud feeling will be more than wot other companies users will feel.
    This said, also Apps are no doubt important but with time and making the UI important and with release of a new flagship phone with ultimate specifications will grab that attention too.
    In simple words MS is takin d right strategy of building best UI 1st n then slowly going to hardware and probably simultaneously upgrade both with new generations.
    This is a pure business strategy followed by MS and having my own business and also working in a tech company made me understand its implications as to why this strategy is used.
    Anyway now it depends on who has faith and who lost.
  • You mean the UI that users have resoundingly rejected? Keeping that UI is a sure path to failure, especially if they want other OEMs to make hardware. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • The app gap is a problem that will never by solved. I have 5 years in this platform (since the Samsung Focus) and the gap problem is pretty much the same, the only time that I saw some progress was during the Nokia days. I will leave the platform in a couple of months because one single constant: We are betting in a company (Microsoft) that do not understand mobile. Every time is the same thing, the last proof was the launch of Windows Mobile 10 and all the bugs and errors. How a company like MS release a software in that state? The only logical answer is that they don't care. I don't want to invest in a company any more that they do not think in mobile, every decision they make is suppose to be like this: " This game is very good on Xbox! There is change that we can release this in WM?" or something like that. You see this company whit his Garage program releasing apps for IPhone but not for WM, and don't come whit the excuse that the garage program is open and developer have the freedom to decide. That is BS. A company like that should put all the efforts in WM. They don't do it because they do not get mobile, is simple as that. You see Google and Apple that everything that they do have some mobile form in it. That is the reason that I believe that the app gap will never be solved and the reason I'm leaving after 5 years. Good reading btw.
  • Agree with you 100%. Its been more than a year WM10 is still beta... time to go.. will return if a complany like MS with its limited resources ever decides to focus on Mobile....
  • Here in our country the philippines... I dont think microsoftph even cared to reach out to companies making local apps informing them that there is bridging tool for them to convert to apps. even their twitter account is not customer friendly. They are just waiting for their salary. Marketing windows mobile here is none.
  • What do you expect from half-assed software, unexciting bland flagship devices and years of broken promises and bad decisions. I've never seen a company suck the fun and joy out of platform as much as MS has with WP. They gave up a long time ago and the current dumbass CEO couldn't care less.
  • Kram You speak the truth!  MS is a JOKE..the board is sucking Nutellas teet right now becuase he is selling personal info and data at an alarming rate, so the stock is going up.  There is no way he is making progress in any PRODUCT besides data mining because he has fired 3/4s of the development team for each platform.  The only ones left are the data mining team.  How do we profit from peoples personal data and not let them know we are doing it.  MS in a nutshell now.  And the big thing is that enterprise always use MS so they are now getting MASSIVE amounts of data from these huge companies.   Bailed on them.
  • You know what would be a solid win? Zen Studios made a version of Pinball FX2 specifically for Windows 10. Demonstrate UWP by finally releasing Pinball FX2 for Windows 10 Mobile.
  • We have all bent over and felt Nadella's tip of the spear.
  • I read somewhere, MS cannot expect to win the Mobile race by going to the starting line each time. MS is the only one at fault for developers leaving the platform. Developers came and gave the platform a chance, MS was not serious about the platform. How can a company with unlimited resources not be able to focus on Mobile? That is just an excuse! MS is developing apps for IOS and Androids before they release the same thing for their own devices. MS will NEVER focus on Mobile... they have given up.. folks move on..Sadly, what could have been has been destroyed by MS....  
  • Especially since they go back to the starting line with the same broken down car. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • This is the worst time for Windows Phone. Even I have decided to leave the platform within 1 or 2 months. I always possessed a Windows Phone and never had an Android. I'm compelled to do so due to following reasons:
    1. I bought my Lumia 640 xl LTE seeing that it has support for a good number of LTE bands and it supports VoLTE also. But Sadly MS didn't provide VoLTE carrier update for Jio 4G in India for any Windows Phone. This is the main reason to throw a Lumia phone here.
    2. There is no app from Jio 4G for Windows Phone.
    3. I used to hand over my phone to my son by opening Kids corner, but sadly MS killed it. Don't say to use Apps corner, because it doesn't provide volume limit or dedicated account by name.
    4. MS provided 3G only option but so late that by this time we need 4G only option and it is not there.
    5. Really there is a huge app gap which attracts towards android, although Windows is a great OS. I love windows phone but can't stay with it in current scenario. However My Windows 10 PC is always there to enjoy Windows.
  • I friend of my have a Nexus 6P. I ask him if I can use his old Nexus 6 to test the platform. I won't lie the only line of Android devices that I like are Nexus (I don't like skins) this is the first time that I can download my local bank app and use it. The Outlook app is very good, at least on this device, OneDrive the same. My advice to former WP users is: "use" android as a door for all the apps that you don't have in the WM Store but instead of use Google services use MS services, on that regard Nadela strategy works pretty well. The only thing that I miss will be the Start Menu. This icons looks like Windows XP -.-
  • My advice is run from any microsoft service or product at this point.  They are only keeping you there to get any type of personal data from you they can to sell to other parties.
  • What the hell are you smoking, Microsoft aren't Google and even your beloved Apple collect personal data to sell to third parties. The difference is that Microsoft are up front about it!!!!
  • If MS wants mobile to survive they need to-do the following:
    - forbid their employees to use phones from other platforms
    - reduce their fee for developers to 0% for the next three years and pay them for every app with over x active users
    - advertise and communicate full support for mobile
    - actively market the phones and os
    - get an attractive trade in program for current windows phone users
    - make upgrading from windows phone to windows mobile easy
    - reward current users by showing them thanks for supporting the platform and giving them discounts on accessories and apps
    - actually do something with the feedback on bugs and missing functionality
    - give bigger financial rewards to retail for actively selling their phones
    - communicate more with current users, make them feel special and create an emotional connection.
    - release decent phones so that people willing to use the os have a phone available to buy
    - introduce real innovations that other platforms don't have yet
    - release innovations on windows mobile first
    - and last but not least, develop a strategy and vision for windows mobile that covers apps, os, hw, marketing, sales, communication etc. If all this is done there may be a way back. But to be honest, I don't think MS has the desire to pull this off. Ms its commitment is half hearted, at best. And the fact that most key staff use phones from other os says it all. I hope for the best but fear for the worst.
  • If you want to know why they abandon you, it's because of your betrayal of all those who have older WP who have not received Windows 10, betrayal like this you do not forget in a hurry.
  • Microsoft NEEDS to make a sneak preview video for the Surface phone in October during their rumored Surface event...if they don't they will die very fast. Even if it takes a year to finish the product.
  • there will be no "sneak peak" of the surface phone,  there IS NO surface phone.  Vaporware,  and fanboy dilusion.  thats it.  I fell into that trap with Mclaren.  I was preaching left right and center that the 1030 / Mclaren was going to be released and announced.  I said that for months however,  that never materialized.....I would have wasted LOTS of money getting that phone,  because I would never make it to my service provider.  However,  in hindsight,  I am glad it never.  Just as the surface phone will never materialize.  There is NONE!
  • The reason why W10 M is struggling is just because of Microsoft’s lack of ability to look forward and inability to understand the current generation customers. It’s very clear that without a filled and adequate  appstore Microsoft  can’t even satisfy their own hard core fans.W10 M OS is far better than any available mobile OS’s in the current market place. It’s secure, awesome UI, more customizable and easy to use, however MS has to work hard to maintain it as stable. Microsoft has to improve more as far as concerned about its design of each Lumia phones. The most Lumia phone designs are outdated and looks chunky at the very first instance itself where I phones and others are far ahead.
  • W10M is really customizable if all you want is a grid of square icons that might show relevant information. Want music controls on your home screen? Nope. Want an app drawer that isn't a single column? Nope. Want a dock with easy to access icons that are always in the same place? Nope. Want multiple home screens? Nope. Don't like vertical scrolling home screens? Too bad. All you get is a grid of square icons, vertical scrolling and random information that you cannot easily access or interact with. It is so simple that it gets in the way when you need to get stuff done. Navigating the app drawer is slow and frustrating. Overdone animations and resuming screens prevent you from getting around quickly. Limited multitasking, no multi-window or quick way to switch between apps make the experience frustrating when you are used to other platforms. It is great for my grand mother though. She just needs a couple big Tiles and a home button, but when I use Windows Mobile it feels like swimming through molasses. Getting anything done is a lesson in patience. Then when you finally get into an app, after waiting for long animation and a then for the app to load, the app feels like you are using 2011 Android. They are so far behind because Microsoft keeps killing it's platforms and starting over doing the same failed thing. They need to get rid of it all. If they want OEMs to use their platform they need to open it up and give them a reason. Our way or the highway isn't a good strategy. At least give them launchers or actually customizable home screens so they have a sense of ownership. When you manufacturer a device, you also want to have some control over the UI and experience. When Microsoft controls all that it makes it harder to have a true sense of ownership and your marketing and sales push will reflect that. It is just another Windows phone. Same as all the others. Why bother when your Android offering has your own UI and customizations. You are in control of the software and are able to do anything you want. It is truly your device and as such you will market and push it harder than someone else's. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • iOS is customisable as well.... if you like a grid of static icons!!!!!
  • thanks to Satya, MS fu&@d up again.windows 10 overall is a failure, a broken buggy os, worst than even Vista Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Mariusmuntean, IMO windows 10 is worse than even Millenium edition.  ME is better than 10.
  • Why does it matter to you anyway!!!!
  • Google and Apple wont allow devs to make app for wmobile.There is some politics also, so I myself have to give up on 640xl bcoz no otg, no better games nothing new so far and I am running latst rs2 build no jokes.Now I am fully bound to buy a nexus to fullfill my app wishlist.
  • Improve the operating sytem to reliable, produce and promote decent powered cell phones and the app developers will come to you.
  • I just read an article on wmpoweruser stating that MS is pulling all windows phones from the MS stores. Anyone know if this is true?
  • I am not sure about pulling but the employees have iPhone and androids. The store that I go to have moved the phone section to an obscure back corner of the store. Something is weird, maybe they will stop making.....well i hope not
  • Would make sense. And it would also explain why they are selling their phones at unrealistically low prices. They are getting rid of their inventory before they ....
    ...... I hope not either, but putting us out of our misery is beginning to look more like a good alternative to hanging by an MS thread for another year.
  • Bring us x86 apps, yeah so e might not run the best but it'll bring a lot of people over to Windows mobile, myself included, why try to get apps when you already have more the Apple and Andriod, from there you can have a great user base and then try to get the devs to move over to the other app platform. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Great write-up Jason, and a quite informative article linked from Ars Technica, which really showed a behind-the-scenes look into the inner workings of Miceosoft, that could probably partly eplain what happened to the Courier tablet among others. I have said it before and I will say it again, Microsoft, in my opinion, has one of the potentially most impactful and successful platforms, but execution in a compelling and user-friendly way has always been their biggest issue, in my opinion. They have consistently been unable to maintain a unified and coherent (and appealing) face to users and the general public aka Marketing! Maybe it's the corporate-focused DNA they have always had. You cannot not have strong third-party apps that engage and shape the teen/young adult and other casual/consumption users (Snapchat, Pokemon GO, etc.). You must be able to cater to them as well as to your "bread-and-butter" corporate- and small-business consumer. The young are your future business (i.e. users) for mobile devices and your services, and most of what they use are apps​, the messaging/AI/bots is a very nascent concept and developers still need to get on board with Microsoft. Here is what I think (in my humble opinion) Microsoft should do: 1. Stop insulting the intelligence of the consumer with their "retrenchment" and rumours of a "Surface Phone" (and the assumption that they would magically migrate to whenever it arrives). It is difficult for most people to change smartphones on a whim. If they have settled down on a platform (OS, device, apps) just assume they will probably never change from that - too much inertia. Don't leave the marketing to the hardware guys alone, 2. Microsoft needs to get away from the common perception they are only business oriented. They don't need much advertising dollars to convince their partners (and businesses) to stay with them (especially if they take care of the relationship and support well), but they do need lots of marketing and advertising to woo (highly skeptical) consumers. By all means surface your new technology and research, but it needs to be coherent - if you emphasize "productivity" then why are you in the "gaming" business? Wearables? These are lifestyle brands. Maybe "Microsoft: Do stuff" would be a better marketing phrase.
    3. Please Microsoft, please stop promising and breaking your promises. There is no need to rush to promise something and then have to pull back on it. This is a core reason I believe many have lost confidence in you - developers and fans even.
    4.
  • The reason I stick with using Microsoft platforms is simply because I like how Microsoft services their platforms. I like how it continues to fully support one of their platforms, even if it has 1% market share. This is also why I dislike companies like Apple. Apple's least popular platform are It's Mac line of computers. Sure they get an update now and then, but Mac's get hardly any attention compared to iPhone, Apple's most profitable platform. And don't even get me started on Apple and planned obsolescence.
  • Mac's get annual updates just like iPhone! You like the way Microsoft supports it's devices?! Obviously you didn't have a Zune, Kin, Windows Mobile, Windows Phone 7 or Windows RT device. Did Microsoft support them? Apple has no examples of dropping support for new devices like Microsoft. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I didn't say Macs didn't get updates, I just said that Apple doesn't focus on it as much as they do iPhone. Geesh, calm down. And those Microsoft products you mentioned have even less then the user base of Windows Mobile 10, and those products actually failed. Windows 10 Mobile has a very small market share, but it isn't a faliure
  • Not for you..
  • Yes, that's very true. But wouldn't that mean that they would support their older devices more because of the similar hardware?
  • You made a point there..You may remember that old and new iphones have about the same hardware....But not Windows phones
  • You made a point there..You may remember that iphones old and new have about the same hardware....But not Windows phones
  • Apple fully supports devices that are 5-7 years old.  I like to see Microsoft do that....NOT HAPPENING!
  • Really? Then how come the iPhone 4S, iPad 2 , and iPod 5 are not going to receive iOS 10?
  • Windows Phone is dead.
    Enough looking at Microsoft's actions like firing, selling, and releasing to competitors first. Windows Phone is dead, Microsoft just won't admit that you bought a dead end product because that will open them to liabilities suits
  • Microsoft should sell android phones with Microsoft Windows Shell. Then work up from there
  • How would that work exactly, they would be going into an already saturated marketplace!!!
  • The current situation is the product of the strategy.. What a different out come? Change the strategy. But there is no Publicly available clear statement of phone strategy and MS intent. Is the phone strategic to anybody in MS? Is anybody in MS committed to developer and product support for the next 10 years+ who k own? LACK OF B2C (consumer focused business). The B2B (business user) only focus is fine if MS is intending to write (or sponsor) all the apps that that audience needs. But MS can never deliver 90% of apps they need by themselves ..( We have seen what happens when they tried this in WM 8..).
    To engage with 3rd party developers they need a good revenue stream and view that the platform will grow. This unfortunately will only come from a B2C strategy and the long term financial commitment needed. One strategy they could adopt to move back into B2C is to open source WM10.. Let people build on it. Let them innovate.. Make it the hackers choice. Be innovative.. Having said all of that.. the best strategy may be to forget WM10 and windows phone completely and move to a pure Universal Windows platform brand, comit to and port UWP to all mobile and desktop os's however big or small then you can release phones with whatever os you like on it. The universal windows platform brand value of .. .'Buy an app once and run it on Windows pc, xbox, IOS, Android, Linux, raspberry pi, surface phone.. TVs.. Web browsers... Watches, IOT, routers, switches and the kitchen sink ' would be powerful.
    One appstore to rule them all.. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Opinions are like ********, everyone has one. So here is mine. To me Microsoft lacks corporate wide planning. Based on products coming out or even the number of them, it appears the left hand doesn't know what the right hand is doing at all levels. Look how many email apps they've developed and how many email addresses that are used by them. Every new release seems to spawn new ones. Unnecessary redundancy costing time and money. When you set a corporate goal into a plan every corner, which includes every technology corner, must be accounted for right down to each App that is being developed by that corporation or corporate acquisition being made. Too many development environments as shown by products being released don't appear to be in sync with any overall master plan. Everyone seems to be doing their own thing with only a glance to what everyone else is doing. It sure looks like a lot of money is being wasted which a decent corporate strategy and plan could have avoided, when enforced. Marketing is grossly missing, but it may not be entirely their fault if they are not part of the plan either and have no clue where everything is going. Corporate participation in schools, movies, and other avenues are non-existent. Anyone with experience in software development knows that any new product is never bug free on release, I don't care how great you think your testing department is. Consumer usage eventually finds more. It takes time to smooth the problems out. You'd be surprised on how much phycology plays in public acceptance too. Something as large as an operating system takes even longer. The amateur mistake is trying to include too many bells and whistles when you don't have the basics working right. Those experienced in development are familiar with the old 80/20 issue and KISS principle (Keep It Simple Stupid) for producing a more immediate success and thus not getting hung up in the adverse pitfalls of spending 80% of your resources on something that only produces 20% of the desired goal, an amateur's mistake. Getting the basics running soon has more physiological gain then having all the bells and whistles there in the beginning. I keep getting the feeling there is no master plan that every employee is being held accountable for their portion of that plan. There is certainly a fair amount of Lip-Service being given to making the public think they have a plan, but the results are saying otherwise, OR, not every corner of their organization is on-board or included, which would imply bad execution or management of the plan. W10 and W10M is a whole lot better than a year ago but still has a lot more to do. I will not reply to any adverse comments to my opinion. I don't care.
  • The main competition are making large errors, Samsung phones catching fire, iPhones showing 'courage' in removing a headphone socket to make more money while enterprise has been desperate for a device thats secure and useable in the real world (they have that in the X3)  The adoption od Windows 10 OS is growing rapidly, the way is see the app store is that its only a matter of time before they come back, I see a lot of companies abandoning Windows Phone Apps (8.1) however that does not mean they wont be back with a UWP.  The platform has been created by MS (Onecore and Windows Everywhere) and HP are leading the charge on the mobile front, others are going to follow and developers will as well, at least those who think ahead rather than a current pay check.
  • The thing MS just doesn't realize is that silence is not helping. They need to reemphasize their take on this over and over and over and over and over. Everyone has been burned, why would they trust a single statement hidden in a press release form 6+ months ago.
  • There are lot's of things MS can do to get the public to start buying their phones.  They can leverage their existing power inside offices to effect users on the street.  Right now Microsoft is about the only platform used in healthcare, from stand alone medical devices to full on computers used by medical staff.  If they could leverage the connectability between those devices and say an XBOX w/Kinect+Windows Phone+MS Band, you could seemingly have home examinations done remotely by general pratitioners for people with a low chance of having serious medical issues.  Insurance companies might be keen to get behind MS on this as well as some overworked GP's.    Then you have education, which is ground MS is loosing badly to right now with chromebooks.  They could provide 'education anywhere, authentication anywhere' with existing technologies and a bare minimum of investment by creating a k-12 online cirriculum that's available lesson by lesson.  Access to lessons can be sold to school districts for inclamate weather and personelle days, also expanded cirriculum like foreign languages that teachers are not available to teach - available on all devices. And a true MS network (MSN) would be nice.  Any device with windows can communicate with someone using any other device and whomever is using it so long as it's running windows and on a wifi.  Microsoft can eschew the 'phone number' and assign a shorter, easier code to each device based on it's MAC address.  Users can contact each other sharing that code and codes can be pooled or linked to your MS account so you can be contacted wherever you are logged in.  So you can theoretically purchase a windows phone with no carrier but still make calls to people also using Windows devices if their code was shared with you.   Those are just a few ideas.... 
  • Oh jeez, not ANOTHER one of these pathetic essays. You guys are really getting desperate. Move over to another platform already, the rest of the tech world knows WP/W10M is dead except you.
  • WP or W10M will never die .. The name Lumia is only killed...
  • Sorry to all the android fluffers out there but android is an absolute mess. Whatever faults w10 mobile may have are exponentially worse on android . I switched from a 1520 that I gave to a family member after they destroyed theirs to a moto g4. This thing completely locks up, cannot manage ram, rogue apps that won't close, play store is filled with malware , marshmallow is about as stable as beta testing fast ring. The grass is not always greener. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • PLEASE tell me that I'm not crazy for remaining loyal to Windows Mobile...
  • In all fairness. WP is getting better every updates.. Although i have my windows phone and android. Phone. To fill the gap hehehehe
  • So that app exodus/ appocalypse of september 30 which would remove all apps without that silly age rating....Did that actually happen? Because all the old and unrated apps were still there this weekend. Did Microsoft realize it would hurt their Store so much they silently crawled back from it? Is it ongoing over the course of a month?