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Microsoft's 4 most disappointing products and services

Microsoft logo at Ignite
Microsoft logo at Ignite (Image credit: Windows Central)

The Microsoft ecosystem feels a bit shaky these days. Across mobile, PCs, Xbox, communication, and entertainment services, aspects of the Microsoft "life" have either become totally outpaced by rivals or have been shut down.

At one point, it felt like Microsoft was on the cusp of delivering a computing ecosystem that could support every aspect of your digital life. Those days are probably in the past.

Microsoft has a ton of great products, including Surface, Xbox, and Office. However, it also has a diaspora of poorly-nurtured acquisitions, neglected services, and in some cases, just weak investments. Here are some of the most notable examples.

Skype

Skype desktop (left) vs. Skype UWP (right)

Skype's legacy will likely be a lesson in total mismanagement, as rival apps and services strip out and disassemble practically any reason to open this increasingly weak program.

Skype's legacy will likely be a lesson in total mismanagement.

Skype used to be a leader and innovator in internet communication, arguably delivering the world's first stable video calling service for consumers. Skype is a household name and a huge brand, known across the world. In recent years, however, its relevance has been diminished.

From Facebook's Messenger and WhatsApp, to Snapchat, Google Hangouts, and Discord, several communication services have grown to beat Skype at its own game. The Skype team has been painfully slow to react, and it has gotten to the point where even Microsoft's lightweight GroupMe IM app provides a better messaging experience.

Skype on Android and iOS is miserably slow compared to rival services. Skype's features and designs are maddeningly inconsistent to the point of total incoherency across desktop, UWP, and phones. Part of the problem with Skype stems from its outdated messaging, which is still miserably slow to update when moving from platform to platform.

Discord in particular has risen to prominence not only as a competent cross-platform messaging and calling solution but also as a tool for building communities, complete with a huge ecosystem of bots and other plugins. Oh, and of course, it's way faster than Skype.

That being said, Skype generally still holds the crown for video calling reliability. It also offers cheap global phone calls, which are highly useful for some territories. But these facts won't save it forever. Skype is one service that really needs a total overhaul.

Movies & TV

For the most part, I'm pretty happy with Movies & TV. The service works well on Windows 10 and Xbox One, and after a series of updates, it has quite a functional and attractive interface. The issues I have with Movies & TV stem from poor investments.

A bit of extra love could elevate Movies & TV from being a "me-too" media service.

With Windows 10 Mobile effectively dead, there's no way for those jumping ship to Android and iOS to access their Movies & TV content, as Microsoft hasn't yet bothered to provide an app. This strikes me as particularly odd since the Groove Music Android and iOS apps were fairly decent.

What's worse is the way content is handled. Despite the 4K push Microsoft is doing with the Xbox One X, Movies & TV is sorely lacking when it comes to 4K content, especially outside of the US. Movies & TV also isn't part of Disney's Movies Anywhere consortium for cross-platform licensing, although we've heard that Redmond is in discussions to join.

A bit of extra love could elevate Movies & TV from being a "me-too" media service to something that could serve Microsoft users everywhere.

Cortana

Harman/Kardon's Invoke speaker is the only dedicated Cortana speaker, and it's US-only. (Image credit: Windows Central)

I've written fairly extensively about how bad Cortana is outside of the US, but the situation continues to be a miserable affair. Frankly, it's not great if you're inside the US either.

Cortana in the UK hasn't seen a meaningful update in years, and users in other territories have suffered worse. Cortana also isn't available in several English-speaking territories, despite being available in the U.S. and UK, which just seems lazy.

Cortana has a pathetic IoT ecosystem when compared to Amazon's Alexa and others. And while the situation is improving, particularly in the US, it might already be too late for Cortana to gain meaningful mindshare.

If Microsoft truly wants to position itself as an A.I. and cloud company, it needs to do something to improve the "face" of that ecosystem. At the moment, Cortana is little more than an embarrassment.

Windows 10 Microsoft Store

Microsoft Store (Image credit: Matt Brown | Windows Central)

Here's another one I've written fairly extensively about, and we can only hope that following the recent reorganization of Windows that the situation will improve.

Although the situation should improve as Progressive Web Apps (PWA) mature, the situation as pertains to Universal Windows Platform (UWP) apps is pretty sad. Most apps in the Store are either poorly made, abandonware, or simply ported via Centennial, missing out on a lot of core Windows 10 features. The situation has certainly been getting better, though, with Spotify arriving on the platform, and some indie apps like Kodi and paint.net.

Things aren't much better on the game side either, with few PC games hitting the platform. The games that are there are pretty awesome, however, with many supporting Xbox Play Anywhere cross-platform play and purchasing.

It's also another service that lacks global reach.

Getting into a multiplayer game via titles installed in the Windows 10 app store is a painful experience when compared to Xbox. Users have also reported issues when it comes to downloading large games on launch day for years, although the experience seems to have improved.

It's also another service that lacks global reach. The US store carries ebooks and more licenses for movies and TV shows than the rest of the world, whose users are again treated as secondary by Microsoft.

Finally, the whole app just needs more polish. App library management is a chore. The search function is temperamental at best. And it's simply poor to browse, offering only basic information at a glance.

Things can only get better ... right?

There are plenty of other Microsoft products and services I have gripes with but most of them are minor issues. I'm also disappointed that the company shuttered Groove, killed Windows 10 Mobile, and ended Kinect, but all of that is in the past now.

Despite all of this and what you may have heard, Microsoft isn't leaving consumers behind (at least, not yet), and the company has made moves to improve the situations outlined above. Windows management has been reorganized across the board, Cortana has a new project leader, and Microsoft just announced a $5 billion investment in IoT. Skype also recently picked up its own Insider program, which should lead to more feedback-led development.

Microsoft is a huge company, and turning the beast around is often a long, arduous task. It remains to be seen whether the products listed above truly improve, but there's plenty of reason to be optimistic.

Over to you

What products and services from Microsoft are you most disappointed in? Do you agree with my take on the ones mentioned here? Let me know in the comments.

Jez Corden is a Senior Editor for Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!

166 Comments
  • You forgot Windows Mobile. Which should be number one!
  • That was no disappointment, it was the withdrawing of windows mobile that was the problem. What's been missed is surely the awful book that Ol' Nads published... was it called 'The Post-Consumer Business Plan' or something?
  • It's not a current product..
  • Surely they must have some stocks of that book somewhere they're trying to palm off for 50p or something? They can't have sold them all. Or are you thinking they pulled an Atari and took a trip to the desert? Best product idea - WC should start selling Ol' Nads posters with a dart board design overlaid on them and a WC branded pack of 'arrows'. I bet that'd outsell many MS products.
  • I would say Kinect was #1. Can you imagine what it would be like today had they invested in it and had someone with two brain cells at Microsoft who had some vision? It could have been Alexa.
  • Again, a case of product good, MS disappointing. The product is fine. That's why we care so much, the products are great so it hurts all the more when MS beggars it all up yet again. Kinect+WMR would have been exceptional. If MS were like Amstrad and just kicked out disappointing products all the time we'd not give a fig.
  • Kinect was revolutionary. Sometimes truly groundbreaking advances do not equal successful products. then someone else comes, like Apple or Sony or whoever and takes credit for the idea. But Kinect was a milestone for entertainment. BTW, now that you mention it, there's some people out there that made a driver that lets you use a Kinect as a full body scan camera that serves as an additional input for VR. Then you get both handheld controllers and full body capture. Legs and all! It's actually really good. Check it out, it's somewhere in the Reddit WMR threads. Something like Driver4VR.
  • Revolutionary products don't have implementation issues. It might have been a great idea, but in reality it sucked.
  • Ok. Bleached this is where you are wrong! The Kinect was a great idea and it didn't suck and never did. I still use mine everyday. Everyday! Also, tell that to the lady in Florida who created the fidget spinners. She couldn't implement it because she didn't have the backing and didn't know how to sell it herself. So after damn near 20 years of owning the patent she was in dire financial straight and didn't pay the annual 200 to maintain her patent. Once that happened all the companies she tried to sell her idea to took the patent to make millions. So when you can't implement your vision it can certainly fail. Even though your product might be awesome! Which the Kinect is!
  • Microsoft has the financial backing. They should have made great software/games for the connect to show how to implement it. They need to do the same with MR. Where are the blockbuster games for it?
  • That just goes to show how badly managed Microsoft was and sometimes is. They should have zero excuses.
  • The Kinect was cool technology but I don't think it ever recovered from the botched marketing and consumer culture rejecting it outright. To this day, when someone mentions Kinect I don't think of a revolutionary way to interact in virtual reality or control a voice assistant, I think of "PICKIN UP MAH BLASTER PUT IT ON MAH SIDE I'M JUMPIN IN MY FALCON WOOKIE AT MAH SIDE I'M HAN SOLO! I'M HAN SOLO! I'M HAN SOLO!"
  • Sorry Windows Mobile is great, they need to come out with a surface phone
  • Supposedly they are. It combines all of Microsoft's biggest failures into a single product, plus it folds in half!
  • Finally. My ZuneHD has been begging me for the chance of getting its retirement, and a brand new Portable Windows-based device is just what I've been itching for.
  • Nah, dopey Nadella will can it.
  • Lol, ha ha
  • Windows mobile was mentioned as a has been. This article focuses on products that are still active
  • The store is terrible. No wishlists. No way to backup AAA game downloads. Constant updates to no effect. No dedicated 24 hour support. Cryptic hexadecimal error messages...
  • Wish list... I've been asking for that since December 2010.
  • And they say they listen to feedback. Wish list was the most basic feature one could expect from an app store but never understood how difficult it was to deliver. This is the state of Microsoft. Various projects seriously need major overhaul in leadership for eg skype.
  • I not sure they listen to Feedback as Subtitle in Movies & TV app still break in SCU even after configuring in Settings since Creators Update. Sigh.
  • I would not knpw about the Store because I see no reason to go there.
  • That's the problem, isn't it?
    You just don't know when the Store app will open, or you'll see a hexadecimal error of some sort, or if it will fail mid-install and you have to click "Try Again".
    And they say they want you to use the Store for everything: as someone who has for years been in control of my PC, I don't trust the Store to install Adobe Photoshop *somewhere* for me. It's just too basic. If Microsoft were serious they would have combined the traditional Windows Installer with Store and created something like the app repository on Linux, complete with proper installation configuration by the user and a consistent download manager that can be trusted to resume the download when something goes wrong. You just can't trust that embarrassment of an app to do anything properly.
  • What's worse is that they could've just brought in something chocolatey and give it a nice UI frontend. But nooo, have this mangled thing that will fail to launch half the time
  • Very bad.
  • Yes, I do agree with you. I don't use any of the products and services you mentioned.
  • You don't use the MS store at all? Even for MS provided apps? Wow, impressive.
  • I use x86/x64 programs on desktop Windows. I have no use for inferior Store apps that lack features.
  • I haven't installed any Store apps either. And I don't even use the already installed Mail and Calendar. Just looking at their UI I can sense how ignorant interns have cobbled these apps together. The best one is Settings and even that hangs when you want to do something a little bit more adventurous, like adding a network TV to Windows. Is anyone "loving Windows" yet?
  • I don't use the Mail or Calendar apps either. I use Outlook 2016.
  • Many people don't even bother with the store. Heck some might not even know it even exist.
  • No one uses those. Microsoft actually just killed most of them and the development team. UWP is dead.
  • Right now significant portions of Windows are UWP, and if nothing unexpected happens, Windows will be UWP from the next version. While I guess that Windows currently doesn't have some bright perspective calling it dead is pretty much exaggeration. So UWP will technically live for fairly long time, now Microsoft may pull some of its consumer UWP apps as part of its general strategy.
  • Microsoft is already backtracking on UWP developers and also on WoA. It is all over, in classic Microsoft fashion it is just a matter of time before they announce development has ended and they are "no longer the focus". https://mspoweruser.com/microsoft-distances-their-always-connected-pc-in... https://mspoweruser.com/microsoft-is-winding-down-development-of-windows...
  • Core parts of Windows are UWP - see Edge, Settings, Start Menu. The entire shell is being rebuilt as UWP piece by piece.
  • You forgot mix radio, groove, zune aka all music streaming services. Not that they were disappointing(they were the opposite) but in the end, Microsoft neglected them
  • The biggest disappointment is MANAGEMENT. Zune, Mobile, Grove, Nokia, band to an extent, and more were all awesome products. MANAGEMENT SCREWED IT UP!
  • So true. The Ms board needs to fire Nadella now!
  • He doesn't set the policy. He executes it. Maybe they need to fire themselves.
  • Can anyone tell me an app/program that is actually good/or improving over the years? I can name Outlook, Word and Excel, but even that innovation seems to slow down outside of UI improvements. I mean literally every other app/program only gets worse or has better competitors. Every Windows 10 app, including mail and calendar is a joke. Microsoft has nothing outside of Cloud that is a success or that is not about to extinct. Nadella's willpower to make anything succeed is so low that nothing will succeed.
  • Something that works well is the OneDrive auto back up of pictures I take with my Android phone. Works in the background. Lots of old lost pictures from old phones that never got backed up or transferred so that's an improvement.
  • Still not as good or seamless integration as Google drive and Google Photos.
  • How is it not as good at backing up photos, they both happen in the background. And of course Google photo is more integrated, it's on its native platform. And are you referring to like the ease in viewing photos or something else?
  • Not even in the same league as Google Photos. Microsoft products are only good if you don't take the competition into consideration. They cannot compete.
  • Actually, it works just fine. Especially, if you have used OneDrive for years and everything digital you have is backed up there. I can access things just fine with it. It may not be Google photos or drive, but I can't really comment on how good it is or isn't, because I don't use Google services on my Note 8, if I can avoid it. I prefer MS products, because it is what I've used for years. The only thing I find frustrating is the lack of a Movies and TV app on Android.
  • "Just fine" is NOT what we're looking for. And they are not "just fine" either.
  • That is what I said. Microsoft photos or whatever is fine, but Google photos is amazing.
  • Steam WMR drivers are getting great support and attention. I'm kinda reaching if I try mentioning anything else.
  • OneNote rocks. PowerPoint is the unsung hero everybody ignores and takes for granted, but it's still pretty top notch compared to any competitor. And it's not a product, but Windows Ink is pretty awesome.
  • I've been using OneNote since 2008, I love it.
  • I'm sure it does but I never learned how to use because I just didn't have the patience to read lengthy explanations from Microsoft employees who can barely speak or write English. This is a real problem across the entire Microsoft interface and if it is not sorted soon , I guarantee you in 10 years time there will be no Microsoft. Not in English, anyway
  • You've never learned how to use one note? There's not much to learn there, it's pretty intuitive... I've never had to read a single explanation or tutorial.
  • That's the thing about OneNote: just start typing notes somewhere.
    I have a feeling anyone having issues with OneNote can't handle the fact that there is no "save" button somewhere.
    People need a change of perspective on how this particular class of programs work. They are made to mimic a notebook and that's it. Just choose a section and start typing and don't worry. Everything works out great.
  • Microsoft users aren't used to Microsoft products "just working". Normally you have to be looking out for the "gotcha moment".
  • crise, speaking of email mismanagement, let's not forget about Live Mail 2012.
    They made it too good? So they had to find a way to break it?
    I still miss seeing my Calendar items in the right column (which now ads instead). So Sad....
  • Xbox, Outlook.com, OneNote, Power BI, VSTS, Visual Studio, Vs Code, SQL Server, and everything in Azure. All improving every month like clockwork.
  • I like the mail and calendar app, what's wrong with it? And it has definitely improved a lot over different updates.
  • If the Mail and Calendar look good to you then there are no bad apps in your world. I'd love to live in your world.
  • Hopefully you didn't like them too much, Microsoft just killed that team.
  • I am not sure if you are talking about Microsoft apps or other apps, but my app Speech Central was updated more than once a month for all those years in average and still usually picks up a new feature in a month. Maybe somewhat slower pace than before but sill updated fairly frequently.
  • Just to emphasize how bad Cortana is outside the US. Ask Cortana for an alarm set for noon in french. She will recognize noon, write down noon on screen yet the user ends up with an alarm for midnight. It's been 2 years since I reported this bug. Also when I ask for the weather outside, I get the results for Los Angeles. I'm not american and live on the east coast.
  • What happens if you ask to set an alarm for midnight in French? Does it set one for noon?
  • The universe implodes. In French.
  • She will set it for midnight. One time only.
  • Doesn't time stand still in France? Sounds like user error to me. 😉
  • Add to that Xbox.
    Terrible UI, ads everywhere, Microsoft's own products segregated by market, poor Xbox One game catalogue (needs to resort to tricks like BCs)...
  • That's a you problem
  • Clearly Raylz works for MS customer support. That sounds like Ol' Nads' company vision to me.
  • It's called an opinion.
    Somethings far too advanced for your brain to compute, apparently.
  • I agree with this, the Xbox One UI. is terrible. The Xbox 360 is far easier to navigate. Just the other night, I needed to delete a game off my Xbox one external drive, I had to use google to figure out how to do it.
  • See, they had to make everything UWP with a single design language for all platforms, and it just doesn't work with controllers.
    This is what I've been saying about having the same app design everywhere: developers get lazy and it shows in overall UX deterioration.
  • Couldn't disagree more. I think my Xbox has a great library of games and I have no issues with the new UI. Also, BC games are a bonus that I have taken advantage of on many occasions. But I do think the MS Band should have been on this list...
  • Completely agree. Xbox One has been ***** this gen. It is a write off this gen. They have never recovered from that God awful Xbox One announcement.
  • Agreed.
    The 360 was a power house, this gen is a disaster by comparison. Only the rabid fanboys disagree.
    Xbox is now a train wreck.
  • I always though Cortana was good when I used W10M. Then I switched to Android and tried Google Now. Google blows Cortana out of the water and then stomps on it.
  • Oneday, Skype UWP received emoji support. On W10M, it's much more comfo to use them instead of the Skype built ones (stickers?). Then subsequent releases later, they're gone. They won't show up. Also Skype UWP is still too slow. And sometimes, it doesn't show all messages received. On W10M, while being incredibly slow, it is more reliable.
  • I am disappointed in OneDrive right now. My wife has an iPhone 6 Plus. The photo sync doesn't work unless you go in and force the upload. I thought it was just her phone, but the same problem on my daughter's iPad. It is terrible. I may be forced to manually back up the photos/videos through iTunes, which is not a good option. Never had a problem with OneDrive on my Windows phones or my Android. Maybe this is an iOS thing, but Microsoft needs to figure this out before people stop using the service altogether.
  • I disagree with All of you 😝
  • Movies & TV
  • Microsoft is a "me too" company.
  • Yeah, they are so "me too" that they launched an IPad Pro device with a keyboard and a pen, and now they're planning to switch Macbooks to ARM. Oh, wait.
  • Yes-- Skype. Thank you! As a former Windows Mobile user (which I loved), Skype with its horrible SMS (dis)functionality was the Devil's spawn. Simply awful, ugly, busy, and useless.
  • Microsoft: An ideas company with no follow through. No idea how to tap consumer mindshare. Skype? Great idea. Bad product.
    vs. Hangouts, WhatsApp, GroupMe, FB Messenger, etc. Cortana? Great idea. Bad product (for most of planet Earth).
    vs. Siri, G-Assistant, Alexa, hell...Bixby even. ( I still love you, Cortie.) UWP? Great idea. No forward momentum.
    vs. Chromebooks now run Android apps. And I will predict that Mac OSX will run iOS apps too (to a degree) once they switch to their own processors. Continuum? Great idea. Uh...where'd it go?
    vs. Dex? OK, so nobody is really making any progress here. Hololens? Game changer...except that it hasn't.
    vs. Oculus, Gear, Vive, all in consumer mindshare. Holowho? This list just keeps going. Band, Groove, Movies&TV, People, etc., etc. The worst part is, I drank the Kool-Aid. I love all these things and wish they were more known/improved.
  • @kingtigre You pretty much summarized the problem. Everything with potential gets no support and pathetic marketing, and then it just falls off, or another company finds a way to do it better.
    Skype was basically the first popular video chatting app in my network of friends, family, and colleagues. It's a shame that hardly anyone I know uses it as their 1st option anymore. It's almost as if it became less user friendly compared to other mobile messaging/video chat apps. I still prefer it for video quality, but FB Messenger is a user friendly alternative, with more people I know having FB messenger on their phone. It's also easier to find contacts through FB Messenger as well.
  • Agreed. It is really unfortunate because most of these products started really strong. Then got worse over time. Almost like too many chefs in the kitchen or something. I can't really explain it.
  • Continuum. It's the future. It should be advertised non stop. Plastered on every MS web page. There should be an ad featuring Minecraft and some user playing on a W10M phone then docking on a monitor to continue playing on a big screen. Like Nintendo Switch gamers do now. <-- baffled and upset.
  • Even Samsung can't get people to care about a feature like that.
  • The problem with companies with too much money - buy everything, forget everything.
    MS is not lean. Nor focused Or forward thinking....
    Once they were. Can a tech company be to old?
    Why buy Skype then not have a plan????
  • Just when I thought this site was becoming ShoppingCentral....now it is becoming BitchingCentral.
  • Say hello to every Microsoft site the past 5 years.
  • You were doing fine until you complained that there was no Movies & TV app for iOS/Android but that Groove was available and fairly decent - eeeerrr, what? Groove on Android is a steaming pile of crap for one very basic but very important reason it can't access music on my Sammy S8s SD card! Without that ability it is 100% useless to me. I put apps on phone storage and music on the SD card.
  • That sounds like a "you" problem.
  • not to me
  • Of course they are all the Microsoft software and apps I use the most frequently. Based on my usage I'm surprised that Edge isn't on this list too, although I've switched to using Firefox more often. How about Maps? They don't even have MS Maps app on Android/iOS mobile devices which is where you would most need a maps app. They should be tying maps/location in tightly with Cortana, but they are dropping the ball instead.
  • No Maps make sense. Microsoft doesn't own any maps data so it is expensive for them to launch such app, and it is more than questionable on how it would add to their bottom line.
  • Kind of nailed it. Still cant believe I was able to do video chat over messenger way back in 2004 but wouldn't go near skype now for the same thing. Cortana what a hunk of junk that thing is
  • I like the idea of Cortana. I just don't like the name Cortana. Never did. I remember when Microsoft was thinking about releasing a virtual assistant the "gaming" people loved Cortana and Microsoft bit. It's like they forgot there a millions of other people out there who didn't know who or what a Cortana was or is. It just looks and sounds like a weird name. And it doesn't roll off the tongue as some other assistance do. Oh well.
  • Consumer facing products are the thorn in the side of Mr. Cloud Nadella. He hates them all because he doesn't understand them. Not that Ballmer was much better but he made a better effort.
  • Agreed. Ppl can say what the want about Ballmer but at least he had a pair. And we can thank him for Surface. But as for Nadella he needs not so much to be fired, just demoted to chief of Azure. He would shine there! But as a CEO he is pathetic, too much of a shrinking violet.
  • I see Jez that you limited to software products only, but I concur with other readers and add to this list two hardware products: Microsoft Band and HoloLens. Band started great. It was promising. But it got discontinued due to the fact that Microsoft didn't had a good OS for IoT devices, I guess.
    The second product, HoloLens, also promised a lot when it was first presented. But I'm not hearing anything about it coming to the consumer market. And I don't think HoloLens is present either in the enterprise market. So, what's happening lately with HoloLens?
  • I agree--Band showed a lot of potential.
  • With regards to "Movies & TV," it's a major downgrade from the awesome "Windows Media Center." I guess MSFT management decided they didn't want an excellent product, so they dumped WMC. This is one of the major things that bugged me when I worked at MSFT - management didn't follow through on great ideas (even when they said they would.)
  • yeah, media center was nice
  • 1. Windows Mobile - then abandoning loyal customers
    2. MS Zune Music Service - then abandoning loyal customers
    3. MS Zune Player (hardware) - then abandoning loyal customers Am I seeing a pattern here?
  • Microsoft makes mediocre products and then kills them when they fail?
  • Microsoft makes GREAT products once in a while and then lets them die due to mismanagement.
    Zune and Windows Phone are among those amazing products that died due to incompetence.
  • They weren't great when compared to the competition. They were late and half baked.
  • I used to really like Movies & TV, and was a semi-regular customer of rentals and purchases. The big problem is MS hasn't released a practical way to access movies and TV shows for non-Xbox owners. I'm a Roku user, but there's no way to watch MS purchased media. Some content is blocked from being wirelessly projected from your Win10 tablet to a TV. After Groove died and I lost some of the music I had purchased, I closed the door on any new media purchases through MS. All my movies and TV shows are bought or rented through Amazon now.
  • I buy the disks, and use the digital copies on VUDU. Best of both worlds!!
  • Skype has actually gotten better the past 2 years. Never used it for messaging, only video calls. I took a hiatus from it probably around 2014-15 and decided to check it out again around late 2016. I don't care what people say but it’s improved, especially if anyone remembers what it was like around 2014-15.
  • I agree with the Windows Store, limited capability to backup software has rendered this fairly useless for me as I have to download EVERYTHING multiple times on my computers. This needs to allow for backup and manual distribution. Nothing like having to download 60gb of software multiple times on a datacap Internet connection of 50gb. This a blind eye approach to the consumer and they should be fixing it. Steam provide a much better service and options. Cortana is getting better.. searches have gotten very consistent and bring back what I need. Skype for Business is Excellent and one of my favorites. The core problem here is having multiple versions of skype which muddy the picture and leave the consumer getting less than what Microsoft advertises that skype can do. Skype is great.. keep it simple on the versions here. your take on the movie and tv is spot on though
  • Windows mobile is my biggest heartbreaker. I hate ios and android and have been forced to switch to an iPhone because Microsoft, themselves, killed mobile. I still hope it will return with a device i can love again.
  • It's hard to identify something out of Microsoft that hasn't been a disappointment, really. Apart from their Outlook email service, pretty much everything is subpar. Especially for those outside of the US. It's baffling how such a huge company does localization so bad.
  • After months of using a Sony 'Droid (intermissioned slightly with an old i5S), I've come to the conclusion that I hate mobile now. Even though my business depends on it. Because ...I miss W10 mobile. Including its Nokia/Lumia camera HW and SW. I mean, I really miss it. At least the [limited] stuff I actually used, always worked. And was seamless. The MS work-arounds for Android and iOS are clunky and problematic. I'll take that folding-Surface-whatever-device if it fits a pants pocket and gets my seamless "just works" back. In. A. Heartbeat.
  • Whatever that thing is, no more half assed or half baked software when they introduce it. The company need to fully embrace it as their only mobile presence now. Go big or go home.
  • Highly disagree for all four. Skype is a brand that has become synonymous with video calls. Movies & TV never aimed to be a massive service, just a way of complementing Windows users with both content and an app. Never meant to be a cross-platform, Netflix competitor. Besides, not even all the countries have it. For my country it's just a native video player. Cortana is also a brand name with moderate recognition, that frankly in the last years, with her competition rising, got a bit buried down. But it's still the spearhead and the symbol of Microsoft's AI efforts. And the gateway to their future.
    Besides, even though it's not full featured outside US, and I'm the biggest complainer about this, it's still a powerful tool you can use everyday to do things. Windows Store: Never understood what the hate was about, what was that people demanded that an app & game store should be.
  • It is extremely sad what happened to MSN Messenger / Skype. Nowadays I only use it for that once in a while international phone call.
    I very much agree that Msft once had all the components for a great, comprehensive, integrated ecosystem. It seemed they were on the way to integrate it some years ago. But meanwhile, once consistent ux of first party has become a mess since the release of Windows 8. The latter was a great innovative move killed off by the type of customers that really bring in the money, enterprise. The Photos app is still pre-natal compared to what we used to have with Photo Gallery. No Movie Maker anymore. Microsoft is leading in serious cloud services for businesses, which is where now the big money comes from, but has dropped the ball in many consumer/personal services.
    On the other hand, a lot of things have been cleaned up. A lot of backend technology is now one and the same. The new reorganization empowers things even more and it can be that within another year Microsoft has recouped.
  • I was heavily invested in the Microsoft eco system and did so with family members and friends.... I have since jumped ship to other platforms do to feeling let down. I now have just one windows laptop that I only use for djing on and wouldn't hesitate to jump ship as soon as I can..... I had over 14 windows phone/mobile, 6 laptops, 3 all in ones and used loads of Microsoft services regularly. I have also got rid of my xbox's not because they are bad just because I refuse to support Microsoft.... They need to wake up and realise what they have done to loyal fans and users before it's too late
  • Sheesh... Reading the comments makes me want to go out and buy a MacBook or a Chromebook and be done with it already. Problem is, no touchscreen on a Mac, old school launch bar on Mac, no games on a Mac. Chromebooks don’t do Android well, Google/Alphabet is more a greedy corporate beast than MS ever dreamed of being, the Google UI is funky, somewhere in between ugly and toyish, and the “OS” still just feels like a glorified Chrome browser. And so I stick with my Yoga 900 with Windows 10’s warts and all, and hope for Andromeda to save the UWP, the Store, and light computing. Or hope for Nadella to get a job on Pluto with the other nut jobs.
  • Oh yeah, no development IDE on a Chrimebook, not even for Android!
  • Skype works fine for everyone I know, but then we are using it on iOS, not Windows. Sounds like a “you” problem.
  • Because there's no real mobile device to use those services on other than iPhone and Android, which they have their own products and services. Boycott Nadulla and bring Baldmer back. Baldmer will get MS back to the glory days...
  • Are you high? Ballmer is the reason why MS missed the mobile train. He publicly ridiculed the iPhone and infamously claimed "no one will buy that".
  • Compare today's MS stock and market Cap versus these values during Balmer's era... enough said I would say.
  • Short sight or future investment you can Ru a company both ways but the outcome will be faster revenue and bad long them prospects. That is where we are probably another 15 years and MS will be the Kodak of computing.
  • Cortana is a huge missed opportunity for MSFT, it was the gateway for getting users of other ecosystems on board the Microsoft train! Let me explain I was the only Windows Phone user among my friends because everyone else had iPhones or Androids, but they also enjoy gaming, big fans of Halo and they were really ready to buy in to Windows for that novelty factor as well as other features they found appealing like live tiles and great cameras. But alas when Cortana stopped progressing so did their interest in Windows along with the other bits they found intriguing. Plus with the added uncertainty of whether Microsoft were going to keep on supporting their own products or just give up turned people off completely.
  • As bad as Microsoft may screw stuff up, the grass isn't much greener on the other side. The android appstore has a lot of chaff, and makes it incredibly difficult to find high quality apps and games. Apps like Discord are alright, but haven't seemed like they seen much improvement, or have draconian privacy policies.
  • I think Microsoft has failed on the issues in this article. Yes, they have some great products like Windows, Office, Cloud services, Xbox, Surface products, but as for these products they have failed. Period! Microsoft used to have the largest third party development team in the world, but in these areas they don't appear to have anything. Developers have abandoned the 3rd party app business. I think it is because of the phone failure. Sad.
  • The apparent decision by Nadella and Bill Gates to back Skype, instead of purchasing WhatsApp seemed misguided then, and has proven to be so, 100 times over. A disastrous product, that seems to get worse every time the incompetent team behind it tries a product reboot. In all the lay-offs, how the Skype team hasn't been shown the door is a minor miracle.
  • It's impossible to stop at only four.
  • How to forget Nokia?
  • What Microsloth did to Skype is beyond crazy. Like it or not, the basic video calls worked; and then MS tried to Window 8 it, dumbing it down and actually making it a lot harder to use - until under pressure they re-released a classic version, which they made very hard to get working. I used classic a week ago for a 3 hour job interview - and it worked quite well.
  • You didn't include windows phone, Microsoft Band, all the abandoned wp8.1 app projects (e.g. touch develop, Photosynth) here maps, and the surreptitious hiring and subsequent firing of half the nation State of Finland!!!
    Even windows 10 update programme misses some device segments like the computer stick that cannot be updated to the latest version of the OS because the base memory is inferior to the required to update even with a clean install... What a mess of company and products...
    Oh and don't forget hp and the elite x3: They were going all in and MS didn't care for their investment 😒
  • - MS Money you can still use it and with a small plug-in you can still import stock data :-)
    - MS Frontpage for simple website building, the sheer simplicity to get something online in a matter of minutes was breathtaking (DWT functionality and even intellisense was unseen in 2003 next to FPSE , ASP and VBA support). However even under W10 you still can use MS Frontpage 2003 provided you want to do nothing more than HTML!
    - Successor MS Expression: Unfortunately MS Expression Web / Studio / Design / Blend (all up till version 4 - 2012) never could compete with Dreamweaver. Fortunately you can still use it and download it for free from MS website.
  • Kinect was amazing, but sadly it was under utilised. This is a prime example of total lack of foresight, Kinect would have made it so much easier to interact with Cortana on the Xbox. If the team integrating Cortana was given more resources and funds back then integration would have come sooner. In regards to the store, the xbox store is leaps and bounds better than the actual digital store. Skype, don't get me started... it's a nauseating experience. The Skype team is treating the world like retards if they continue to say the current presence controls are granular, they are anything but granular. That's the most visible idiocy and it's the most commonly used function on the desktop so I'm going to keep harping on about it until they revert back to the that on the UWP and Mobile apps. I sure as hope they port the desktop app as the UWP app is just terrible. Goes to show really, it doesn't matter what the brand is - it's the people who make the product. Right now, they appear to be broiled in petty office politics and thus it's showing in the incoherency and haphazardness. I doubt PWAs will make a dent in the app argument, as the more complex apps will suffer from API restrictions and lack of similiar APIs found in Win32 applications. Because at the end of day, PWA apps are just enhanced web wrappers. The reason Microsoft has taken on themselves to publish them - simply stems from the fact if PWA does not gain momentum then it will certainly prove that Satya Nadella was not the right man for the job. As he has stifled many, many, many, mamy things with his countless re-orgs. I sure as heck hope Andromeda isn't one of them.
  • Well, I totally agree except for Movies & TV which seems decent to me. Maybe, it should be updated more often, renamed and pushed with more competitive prices to make people even notice it.
    I will mention my 5 most disappointing ones:
    5th: Groove. Killing the music store was no sense. You can't keep it for how much? more than a decade? and a little after a dramatic rebrand you kill it completely. Forever. The strong impression here is that the chiefs are deciding such things for some ideology or some feeling that has nothing to do with how investments work IMHO. Moreover, Groove offline functions should completely replace Windows Media Player ones (Device Sync, CD management etc.). New things can't be deployed with more limitations than the past, practically never! This is a common mistake they do in Microsoft, which contributes to the terrible widespread feeling about their updates (I am not talking about this community).
    4th: Skype. Yes, still in 2018 it is not reliable! UWP sometimes ignores messages, especially if you use the quick reply from notifications. The android app happens to receive certain messages after days, I mean... days! To say they are slow is an euphemism. The continuous afterthoughts are frustrating. Again, it's absurd even the existence of 2 very different versions on desktop. First fix and level what exists, then try to catch the competitors with new features!
    3rd: Cortana. At least in Italy has several problems. In certain devices has to be called 3 times before it works. Some operations work only sometimes, for example the unit conversions. The artificial intelligence is still underdeveloped. You have to learn the exact sequence of words she understands and despite this she can sometimes even play all your music when you ask for a search.
    2nd: Microsoft Band. Are smart wearable currently dead? I don't think so. Did you say Windows in EVERY device? Then, you can't give up just after the first 2 versions of your band! I don't know what you think but I find in decisions like this a very wrong message in the mid term. It's like saying "we sometimes invest in sectors just to make our engineers play a bit, but they often are not capable". It was a great possibility but they burned all the potential confidence about it.
    1st: Windows 10 mobile. The most suicidal project I have ever seen. Really beyond the absurd. Here is valid what I wrote above on Groove. Killing this project - full of potential - doesn't mean "killing a losing project". It means hurting lots of things: the MS Store, the MS cloud services, MS IoT, Cortana, Bing, the augmented reality developments, the concept of a seamless experience across devices, the confidence in Microsoft and so on!
    Well, let's say we are optimistic about the future :) but healing all of this will require time and some step back about certain wrong decisions.
  • Thanks for this post, Jez,
    but I am afraid it just scratches the Surface. I still prefer MS products and don't want to use Apple or Google (had my experience with both). Increasingly, I have the feeling MS is looking for a niche to survive. Is MS a potential next Kodak? As you wrote, they killed many products I loved (Windows Phone, Zune, etc.) and do poorly on others (Skype). - Today, I have serious doubts a company can build a future without consumer influence and usage but I am open to learning new things.
  • Xbox One.
  • So many of these programs/services failed or were abandoned due to Microsoft's insistence on everything being tied into BING (because the Board wanted that ad-revenue.) You also can blame former management for this, but it is a fact. Apple has no search capabilities so they use Google for everything (with Google paying them $2 Billion a year for the position in their products.)
    If MS could not capture all data and search in BING and drive all queries to it, they dropped the product.
    MS also has a terrible problem with internecine warfare among the senior VP's who have made a career out of backstabbing and climbing over the bodies of those they have killed the product lines of to get their personnel and resources for their own use.
    Look at how many quality people have given up and left Microsoft in the last 4 years because they were frozen out and turned into the VP of "Looking out the Window" due to having all their resources and people being taken away in endless reorgs and shuffling of priorities.
    Nadella came out of the Cloud division and they are making money hand over fist so the board has given him carte blanche to remake the company in that division's image.
    They are much more IBM now than Apple, so get used to it.
    Also, with their patent portfolio making up to $15 for every Android Phone sold (for FREE), and all the cross-licensing with Apple, they make MORE MONEY on iPhones and Android Phones than they ever could on Windows phones. That is why they dropped it. It was a total cash hole with no ROI. They own so much Apple stock (from 1995 when they purchased a huge amount to keep Apple in business so they could point to them as a "competitor" in their Monopoly Lawsuit with the US Government) that they rake in huge cash whenever Apple does well in the market, not to mention their software sales to iPhones and Macs. Same thing is happening in the Android market now too.
    Remember, Microsoft is in business to MAKE MONEY, not to make you happy. They will "follow the money" wherever it leads, and right now that means Cloud and SaaS, not in building phones or video-chat apps. Luckily, XBOX is Cloud and SaaS so enjoy it while it lasts.
  • Very elaborated observation! Let's go back to the very start of this... MS Dos versus IBM dos and W a n g Dos, MS versus Wordperfect, MS versus Lotus 123, MS versus Dataease and Borland DB IV and now many years thereafter they are healthier than ever. So not bad I would say for an IT company.
  • This has been a recurrent "fireman" argumentation for a while, since the 2016 "retrenchment" on consumer products. Ok, you have to make money but this is really too simple concept. For example, you have also to lay the basis for FUTURE money, which is different. You have to look also at the mindshare, to show consistency with your values and recent solemn statements. There is much more than "money today". Just for theoretical example, If a peace organization happened to make a lot of money on the weapons commerce, you wouldn't simply say "it's the market, the destiny of economy" or whatever. I would say that it would be damning its history and even its future. A big company like Microsoft can't be led by a calculator in fact and I think that not only are all these criticisms fair but also positive.
  • Actually, Microsoft sold the Apple Shares acquired through the gentleman's agreed to bail out Apple when they were going bankrupt.
  • My opinion is that They have overlooked the consumer portion of its market place. Meaning that consumers wish to do more with our windows investment overall than just a corporate view.
    Insider rings I feel are a great tool for MS to address our wants and interactions.
    I'm hoping for a long term healthy environment of windows devices and services without being shut out.
  • The Edge Browser will be the next to go....
    Microsoft's Reasoning Google and Mozilla have the Market cornered and they need to focus on Azure and Business customers...
  • Edge Browser is not going anywhere. "Intelligent Cloud, Intelligent Edge". For Edge devices to connect to the cloud and to each other, you need a browser. If anything, Microsoft investment in Edge will increase and improvements will accelerate. That is why we have the Edge Browser on Android and iOS.
  • The Edge Browser seems like Windows Phone all over again:
    1. Limited Extensions
    2. Limited Adoption
    3. Not profitable
    I though Microsoft gets rid of these type of things. But you are right it will probably be baked in to OS so can't go anywhere. Also I agree Microsoft's emphasis on IOS and Android apps has been very helpful, especially the Office Suite.
  • My biggest disappointment with Microsoft was the almost complete lack of commitment and transparency with Windows Phone and Windows 10 Mobile. They never tried to get a complete first party of apps and services and then try to push smart phones. It was always a work in progress until the end. And if they had delivered a complete ecosystem (apps, services, APIs, Store) to go with the phone hardware, they could have 10 to 20 percent market share in a few years. They took billions in losses to get Bing profitable and working great, they should have done that with phones. Now they continue to shutdown apps and services (Maps, Groove, MSN apps, etc.). Mismanagement!
  • You can add wincrap 10. A joke OS with a good core but plagued by quality issues due to lack of a proper QA team.
  • Hmm. Sounds like that reorg was absolutely necessary.
  • Absolutely agree.
  • Skype as cheap call service? I need to make a series of urgent calls when I was in EU so I make a deposit to the account(was an iph if that matter), then it tell me my fund won't be available unit 24hrs later. WTF and I am done with skype ever.
  • I like the new design of Skype, and of course video calling is the best by far. My favourite feature is it doesn't save media automatically. But yes, it slow,really slow, especially focusing on the photos.
  • Interesting article, but I'm not sure how much I agree with it...
    I happen to use 3 of the 4 services mentioned here, and they've all served me quite well. These are my personal experiences with each one: 1) Skype This is the #1 service I use the most, and I use it quite heavily to keep in contact with my long-distance girlfriend. It's served me very well since she and I got together. I actually REALLY love the "People" integration in the taskbar, and I use that all the time in conjunction with Skype. Calls work decently well, and recently I actually watched a movie with her using Skype's sharing feature. It has a nifty new sub-feature where you can actually share your PC's audio with the recipient on the other end, so that makes for an AWESOME way to watch YouTube videos and movies with people during skype calls. Having said all that, lately I've been noticing strange occurrances with it where messages I send to her take about 10-20 seconds to actually deliver. When I send pictures, half the time they actually never deliver properly, so I have to fernangle with it until it finally decides to work. I'm hoping that the Spring Creator's update can fix those issues, so I'll wait and see with that one. But overall, Skype has been very useful and the positives still outweigh the negatives for me. 2) Movies & TV This is a BIG one for me as well. I use the Movies & TV app all the time, and I'm always buying new movies on the Microsoft Store. In my opinion, the experience is flawless. I have a collection of over 50 movies all from the Microsoft Store, some of which are 4K. I love being able to not need to open a web browser and go to like Amazon or Netflix to get access to digital content, because it's built right into Windows 10. The other thing that makes the experience particularly great for me is I have the best setup for it. My PC is a console-sized rig that I built using the Dr. Zaber Sentry case, with an NVidia GTX 1080 card and everything, and it's sitting right below a 55-inch 4K TV, with a 5.1 surround sound system and a Logitech K830 Bluetooth wireless keyboard. Pair all that, with the intuitive UI of the Movies & TV app-- that makes for an incredibly nice and unique experience for watching movies in one's living room. Nothing really bad I can think to say about that... 3) The Microsoft Store I don't really visit the Store too often, but I really like navigating it for movies, as I mentioned above. If you want to talk about apps, there's actually a LOT of hidden gems in the Apps section that people can easily miss. I found the following apps on the Microsoft Store: -- Discord UWP
    -- Plex
    -- AwesomeTube
    -- MoodFlow
    -- Facebook/Facebook Messenger
    -- Twitter
    -- Disqus
    -- Minecraft for Windows 10
    -- Cuphead
    -- Pandora
    -- iHeart Radio I just listed 11 really nice, polished Windows 10 apps that I use pretty often, and you can find them all on the Microsoft Store. Having said that, I do agree that there's a lot of shovelware and the store needs to be cleaned out of it, but if you spend some time browsing around you actually CAN find some great stuff in there.
  • After all this,....You know....( Cortana not available in my country, MS Band killed, Docs dot com closed, the unbelievable slowness of OneDrive compared to Google Drive, the miss of a Photos App on Android and iOS (because OneDrive is crap to organize photos, compared to Google Photos), Groove Music and so on and so on... we all know!! i'm switched back to Google. Here i can work, here is all i need, including Google Assistant, Inbox, Calendar, Maps, GooglePlayMusic,Photos (great!), Docs, slides, presentation, contacts, GoogleFit (MS Health = dead), Translator, Google Hangouts (Skype = LOL) Google Drive (extremaly fast!), Blogger , Adsense,AdMob (for my Apps), Google News and so onand so on and last but not least.... Android as a mobile OS. (You know. WindowsPhone = killed)
  • i dont know much people that want to be spied in their house by an Ai speaker...
  • MS totally messed up on Skype and what it could have been.
    Then come almost all the cosumer stuff ie Band, W10m....
    Why are they trying so hard alienate consumers?
    Why not come out and say officially (not through tweets)
    MS is focusing on Cloud and Business applications - why not just say that. The Surface has its days numbered...
  • Why do you need Microsoft to say "We are focusing on Cloud and Business"? Isn't it bleeding obvious by now? Azure, Office, Visual Studio, SQL Server, every Windows 10 update is for "creators", etc. None of this is for consumers. Do you need Frito-Lay to say "We are focusing on snacks"? Tesla to say "We are focusing on electric cars"?
  • I would guess many of you haven't used it much but One Drive for Business is a mess. My company has office 365 accounts and that's why I can't use Dropbox. But the difference between them is enormous.
  • I use OneDrive personal, and really like it. Never any problems. What makes it "a mess?"
  • Two more... 1) Bing Translation services are poor compared to Google Translation. 2) Mapping and mapping related services.
  • I went searching for replacement messenging app recently, I think Skype on Android is just fine now. It fell behind, not doubt, but it has come a loooooonnnnng way.....(No more Facebook for me! That means WhatsApp, Instagram, and of course Messenger. I don't think they have the mindset to manage our data properly. And they have too much personal detail, gleaned from my account and mashed up with other data bases. Creepy. But I digress.) And remember, didn't Skype completely rejigger they underlying architecture throughout, (what was it) 2015-2016 or into 2017? Not a small project, especially while they (mostly) kept the millions of daily users cruising along. So, seems to me, there is some logic that it was "not the time" to present consumer facing app features and enhancements. But poor Skype though, during this time, WhatsApp and Facebook Messenger took off and ate their lunch. Still, I think it will be around a long time.
  • Sad really. A pretty disastrous decade from a consumer perspective as Microsoft moves to become the next IBM - making money but pretty irrelevant to our day to day lives.
  • well it seems I'm one over 100 that thinks Microsoft its doing good. I think Microsoft failure its because their reputation is hunting them. For example nobody want edge but if you ask why? They don't give you a answer it just because explorer was crap well i use edge every day and it just works the mail app works as well. So imagine if developers only hear that windows 10 store sucks off course they would not develop an app for a store that nobody want. Skype has done a Huge improvement. Cortana is not even mentioned on the comparisons between smart assistants just because the bad reputation but when Cortana was released was very good.
  • Oh, my, where to start! For me, the most disppointing situation is the lack of continuity in improving the tablet mode experience. It was awseome with windows 8, weirdly abysmall in the early insider and official release days in windows 10. It was picking up nicely after official release where community involvement and feedback hub helped adress issues. Yet despite repeated feedback microsoft seems deaf-eared to finishing half baked features in windows, which is disappointing on so many levels and frankly unprofessional. Many users, myslef inclusded, are not getting the tablet and pen&ink software experience on the surface device users should be getting. And the issues at hand are not major ones and doable. Some time out fixing desktop (a lot of work has been done with windows in the last 18 months in this department) and focussing on fixing tablet experience and tablet mode issues for 6 months would help a lot. If not I think microsoft should consider stepping out of the consumer space and not cause another windows phone fiasco (which I see coming). It's an alienating experience with false promises. I think skype can be solved by what microsoft did in the past, when we had msn messenger. This is: allow "third party" messenger to make add-ons for skype. I would like to like my whatsapp contacts and conversations to skype (as the universal messaging hub in windows) and be able to message to my whatsapp contacts and conversations through the skype dashboard. efficient in the past, helpful today. I agree completely with the state of Cortana. Microsoft store. I actually quite like the Windows/Microsoft store. I like the update process of apps too. Yes the lack and state of apps does bother me sometimes. When I look critically what I actually use from the store, it's fine really. Groove for me was a writing on the wall since the start of windows 10. Microsoft, in my experience, has always been poor in their end of life servicing with music in the past. For me it is a red flag with windows. Microsoft, for me, has shown to be more reliable and progressive in supporting tv and movies over time. I trust them on this. The experience has been fine for me over time. I still wish I could use online banking, as this is a common payment method in my region of the world. Credit card is less popular and mainstream for these kinds of streaming services. The financial infrastructure for safe online banking support is good in the Netherlands. I do wish microsoft would consider a paypal like subscription service for new movies&tv shows. There are more buy than rent options which makes movies&tv shows an expensive proposition. And with no disney support kind of meh too. I'm not sure if things are getting better. In some ways yes, I think especially on the innovation side. Microsoft is showing increased interest on wanting to be ahead of game in innovation and evolving. But increasingly, I think it is at the cost of fit- and finish and a more complete and robust experience. A lot is still half baked in feature, performance and to a degree performance. They should be adressed first before moving on to the next best thing in windows.
    I don't buy a car that has 5 gears, yet I can only drive in first gear (where are the other 4 gears?).
  • I was very disappointed when Microsoft decided to kill Windows phone. then I was disappointed when Microsoft killed the Kinect. I also never understood why they offered the groove service on third party platforms but never did that with movies and TV. initially the movies & TV app not being available on other platforms was not an issue since I was a loyal user of the Windows mobile platform, but now I'm forced to go with Android and the only way I can access the purchases that I've made through the movies & TV app is with a Windows PC or tablet or Xbox or get fancy and remote into a machine from my phone. I just don't understand they gave Groove all the love yet they shut it down but are continuing to support the movies & TV app yet it's not available another mobile devices. it's like Microsoft isn't really trying sometimes and it's very upsetting as someone who wants to support their efforts..