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Are the Lumia 950 and 950 XL victims of the Surface's success?

In a mind-bending paradox, he found that his enemy was actually his future self. As his twisted future self arrogantly pontificated about how he had become what he was, the "present" self adamantly rejected the notion and declared he'd never become what he saw before him. He then shot and killed his future self.

He became the instrument of his own demise.

In good company

On October 6th, 2015 Microsoft introduced an impressive repertoire of high-end first-party hardware. HoloLens brought us augmented reality and wearable holograms. Band 2 debuted with an improved design and curved display. The Surface Pro 4 is the thinner, lighter yet more powerful tablet that can replace your laptop. The Surface Book, Microsoft's "ultimate laptop", also doubles as a detachable digital clipboard.

It was among this high-end repertoire of Windows 10 hardware that Microsoft launched the Lumia 950 and 950 XL, its most powerful Lumias yet.

"A" game

Though these Lumias had their start under Stephen Elop's regime, the esteemed Nokia design has benefited in part from the "Panay touch" that brought us the Surface. The Lumias 950/XL borrow liquid cooling from the Surface. This innovation is a first for any mobile phone.

Lumia 950 XL

The phones also sport iris scanning, a technology not yet found on the industry leading iPhone or Samsung Galaxy devices. Both Lumias, through Continuum and Microsoft's Universal Windows Platform, can also become your "PC" with a wireless (or wired) connection to a larger screen, mouse, and keyboard.

The aforementioned combination of features found only on the Lumias 950/XL are accompanied by a powerful pack of the usual specs. From a high-resolution screen, generous RAM, leading imaging technology, expandable storage, a USB type C port and more, these devices rival anything the competition has brought to the table. This isn't just fan talk. Microsoft ensured that these specs are comparable to or surpass those found in even the month old iPhone 6S Plus. Which Apple won't likely update until Q3 2016.

The best yet

As with any company, the next iteration of Redmond's devices is certainly on the roadmap. That's just good business. Rest assured when Apple launched the iPhone 6S/Plus this year, Cupertino was also prepping the iPhone 7 for a Fall 2016 debut.

Apple fans knew this. Millions of the Cupertino faithful eagerly purchased "the best iPhone's yet" when they launched this September. Moreover, some of these fans had been waiting only a year for this upgrade, having been among the record-breaking millions who purchased the iPhone 6/Plus in their debut weekend last year.

As I shared in "The Lumia's 950/XL are Microsoft's colorful iMacs", Windows Phone fans have been waiting for 1-3 years for a new high-end smartphone that matches or surpasses what the competition offers.

With the Lumia 950/XL, Microsoft has delivered on that. And for those not blown away with the devices' aesthetics, the phone's removable back covers provide users the option to utilize an assortment of attractive 3rd party covers.

Lumia 950 Mozo Case

Putting off for tomorrow

Ironically, many fans have decided to pass on the best Lumia's yet in lieu of what they are certain will be better devices next year. This certainty of a better device "next year" is nothing new of course. In tech, one thing is certain.

The devices any company launches in one year will be outdone by the device(s) launched the following year.

This reality is inescapable and leaves many users who always want the latest and greatest chasing the wind. "Next year" will always be better.

Inaction speaks

Actions speak louder than words. The opposite is also true. A lack of action can speak volumes. The wrong message can be derived from what is done or not done.

"For people who love Windows, we'll have a flagship device."-Nadella 7/14/15

The Lumias 950 and 950 XL are for the fans.

So what message might an industry of consumers, journalists, investors, rivals and others derive from a fan base that may be unresponsive to the debut of Microsoft's first-party Windows 10 Mobile phones? "Meh." And that's not good. It's actually pretty bad. Let's look at Microsoft's mobile efforts through the lens of the industry.

Most industry pundits and consumers see Microsoft's 2.7% representation in the mobile arena as a floundering, barely visible effort that consumers and developers have rejected, and many journalists and bloggers have written off. Apple's and Android's 97% domination of the market has already declared Windows Phone's demise in the minds of many.

Despite the doom and gloom, however, one hope remained.

Windows 10 has been touted by Microsoft, its supporters, and even naysayers as Windows Phone's last great hope.

Windows 10's debut on PC was well-received. With 120 million installs in 3 months, increased store engagement and revenue for developer's part of the Universal Windows Platform is off to a great start.

Impressive sales of the Surface Book and positive reception of the Surface Pro 4 are the layings of a solid foundation for Windows 10 first-party (and OEM) hardware. The Band 2 has also been a well-received first-party hardware from Redmond.

It's within this context that the phone, the most critical component of Microsoft's mobile efforts and the other part of the Universal Windows Platform strategy, exists. And it's this most critical component that has, ironically, received the most criticism.

Lumia 950 XL

If fans don't want the best Lumias ever, why should anyone want a Windows Phone?

The Lumias 950/XL are debut devices positioned to showcase the debut Windows 10 Mobile OS. For a company with little consumer, developer, industry and media support of its mobile efforts, the fan base's rejection of Microsoft's best first-party phones to date, at such a critical time, will likely send a clear message to the industry.

The masses will likely interpret Windows Phone fans' ambivalence toward these devices as a rejection of Microsoft's floundering mobile platform.

Consider. The industry can clearly see that the 950 and 950 XL boast high-end and competitive hardware with unique features and functionality. Considering that many fans have endured using 1-3yr old hardware to date, updated competitive hardware that takes advantage of unique capabilities of the new OS would seem desirable from the perspective of an observer.

If fans shrug these devices off at the critical debut of the new mobile OS, objective onlookers such as consumers, journalists, investors, rivals and the like, may perceive that as a rejection of the OS and an endorsement to finally write the platform off.

Victims of their own success

So why are many fans giving the new Lumias the cold shoulder? Among the reasons submitted, the prevailing reason seems to be that the devices aren't what some fans expected from the company that brought us the Surface. They want the rumored "Surface Phone". The Intel-powered, Continuum-enabled, "PC in your pocket" that they are confident Panos Panay and team will bring.

Ok. I feel you. Me too.

Herein lies the problem. The Surface line has not only inspired OEMs. Its sleek design and intricate hardware and software synergy has also inspired Windows Phone fans.

These Windows 10 devices that transcend a fixed form, powered by Continuum and are receptive to multiple input modalities like touch, pen, voice, keyboard, and mouse have seared an image of Windows Phone's future potential in our minds.

Do you see what I see?

A Microsoft first-party Windows 10 Continuum-powered "phone" purposed as the PC in our pockets, in our estimation, should boast Surface-like looks and power. Ok, so that's not the Lumia 950 family. So let's say Panos and team had their run of Windows Phone over the past year. Would we have the "Surface Phone" instead of the Lumia 950 family this Fall? Probably not.

You see the Surface isn't only awesome because of its awesome hardware. The way that awesome hardware works with the relatively mature and great software is what makes it awesome. Note that maturity is specific to the tablet/laptop form factor and use case scenarios that are less app dependent than a phone.

The click of the N-trig pen to initiate OneNote (and now Cortana) works seamlessly with how we use the device(s) in tablet (clipboard) mode. The easy click into the type cover preps us for productivity in laptop mode. Now Windows 10 on PC is mature enough to make various input modalities and the way we use a Surface is truly amazing.

Windows 10 on phone isn't there yet.

Again, if Panay had full run of the Windows Phone project last year, there would likely have been a disconnect in the progress of the hardware in relation to the progress of the software. We've seen Windows 10 Mobile. It's getting there.

What we want

If we envision how we anticipate using a "Surface Phone," multiple input modalities come to mind. Touch, voice, keyboard and mouse we have on an immature yet to be released Continuum-powered Windows 10 Mobile. What we don't yet have is pen. I believe pen input has an even greater place on a phablet than on a Surface for everyday scenarios.

As the primary computing device that is always with us, I imagine the pen will have a front row seat on a Windows 10 Mobile phone. I envision the application of pen support beyond apps like OneNote or art apps. I see an OS with interactive live tiles that are responsive to pen interaction in varied ways. Combined with Continuum, a "Surface Phone" will be a digital notepad as well as the "phone" that will replace your tablet and become your PC.

At any rate, my point is this, Windows 10 Mobile is not quite ready for a Surface-like experience on phone. Even if Panos Panay were in Elop's "seat" last year, that likely would not have changed things.

Panos Panay and Surface Pro 3

Panos Panay and Surface Pro 3 (Image credit: Daniel Rubino / Windows Central)

The Butterfly Effect

"Can the flap of a butterfly's wings in Brazil set off a Tornado in Texas"–Chaos Theory (Edward Lorenz)

I laid out the following timeline in my previous piece.

If the Lumia 950/XL sell well, that will create an impressive surge in Lumia sales for Q4 2015. This surge will likely lead to higher Store engagements and developer revenues for the quarter. This data will provide powerful talking points for the Universal Windows Platform to encourage developer support for the likely activation of the app Bridges around Q2 2016. By Q3/Q4 2016 Panay's "Surface Phone" may surface and benefit from initial ported iOS and Android apps courtesy of the Bridges. By Q1 2017 OEM partners may begin building high-end Windows "phones" inspired by what Panay delivers in Q4 2016.

What's the catalyst for this Windows 10 Mobile ecosystem boost? Successful sales of Microsoft's debut first-party smartphones, the Lumia's 950 and 950 XL (ideally with broader distribution), during the debut of the new mobile OS upon which much hope has been built.

If none of this happens because a significant number of fans are waiting for the Surface Phone, we may inadvertently contribute to increased negative perception of the platform.

Additionally, Alphabet's (Google) Android's assimilation of Chrome spells trouble. A 2016 introduction and 2017 debut of a unified Android/Chrome OS (the world's most popular mobile OS) will likely draw developer's attention ever further from Windows.

Sadly, in waiting for the Windows "phone" we envision and feel we deserve, we, like the protagonist in the movie I opened with, may end up "shooting" ourselves.

I could be wrong. Time and how these devices sell will tell.

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!

  • Thanks for reading. Be sure to follow this series High and Lows Microsoft's Smartphone Strategy. In case you missed any articles in this series here they are for your reading and sharing pleasure! :-) Highs and Lows: Microsoft's Smartphone Strategy - Follow me on Twitter @JLTechWord and I'll follow you back. Let's Talk!!!
  • Great article
  • Seems like futurama,lol Fry...
  • If fans shrug these devices off at the critical debut of the new mobile OS, objective onlookers such as consumers, journalists, investors, rivals and the like, may perceive that as a rejection of the OS and an endorsement to finally write off the platform.
    Yes I can agree which is why I'm looking to sell my Lumia 930 and get the NEW Lumia 950 
  • I don't know where the author gets that fans don't like the Lumia 950...I have the exact same as you, selling my 930 and getting a (white) 950. Can't wait :-D
  • Exactly the same!
  • The phones seem fine. The OS has quite a few upcoming features that are not ready and available just yet, so that is the biggest reason for lack of excitement. If Android and iOS apps were currently coming onboard in rapid succession, phone notifications, visual voicemail and calls all showed up and could be initiated from a tablet or laptop, and Win32 bridges to the store were all included and working smoothly, there would be lots of excitement for these devices. At least that's my opinion.
  • The reason why no one is excited is because the OS is not that impressive (the UI is largely the same as Windows Phone 7, and people are over the new-factor of it - nevermind now it's associated with Windows 8 which wasn't recieved well) and the release cycle is odd.  It's after Samsung S and Note releases.  It's after Nexus Releases.  It's after iPhone releases.  It's after iPad announcements.  It's after flagship releases form the likes of Motorola, LG, and HTC.  etc. By the time Microsoft gets these phones out, Apple, Samsung, LG, Motorola, Sony, etc. have already absorbed a lot of upgrades and new purchases. It doesn't help that there are fairly high end devices like the Nexus 5X and new Moto Max that cost hundreds cheaper than their flagship and are still spec'd out quite well. Same goes for thier software.  By the time people are done going over all the details of new Android and iOS releases they're a bit exhausted with it all.  This is all interesting to us, but the general public doesn't have attention spans for tech as long as we do.  The first thing that catches their interest, opens their wallet.  You cannot be late.  This is why other companies have been moving their release cycles up earlier in the year. Windows Phone is already over 4 years old...  Time flies.  It's no longer "new," even with the yearly reboots they can't seem to let go. I'm seeing more enthusiasm over the Blackberry Priv than I am seeing over these new Lumia devices...  Not just because it runs Android, but because they actually released something that was out of the norm these days.  This is why Apple does a Tick-Tock release cycle where they Refine the design and introduce new hardware features, and then redesign the device.  Just the cadence and reliability of that schedule fuels anticipation leaidng up to device releases.  Microsoft doesn't have that, and they need to get it going - consistently.
  • I agree. I think there is a hell of a lot more people excited about these devices than are put out by them. If AT&T sells the XL, that's what I'll get. Otherwise, I guess a 950 will do until the next gen is released.
  • He gets the idea because the negative people are the most vocal and claim to speak for everyone with "we want" speak. I want the XL depending on AT&T pricing. Posted from this here device.
  • Yes the author is a little bit strange, I´m really waiting and look forward for the new 950 and Xl, I have ordered the XL model, amazing phone. And I´m a huge MS and WP fan, the new line is really a step forward. I gave my 930 for my daughter two weeks ago, and now only having my 1520, it´s also a nice phone, but compared with the new editions, 640 XL and now the 950 Xl, it´s a little bit old and outdated, I need to agree. I relly like the new 950 serie, it´s amazing, great job from MS, and I´m sure the future will bring us more on the way up.    
  • Agree. Exactly what is the (unannounce)Surface phone expected to be in comparison, these phones whose spects comprise of the latest tech?  
  • The initial "response" from the renders weren't aesthetically "satisfying" at first but since the prototypes and oct. 6 event, reception has changed.
  • This is the question I have too.  I was a windows phone addict in the early 2000s until I switch to Blackberry in 2007 and android in 2011.  I have been using Note 2, 3 and now 4, and have only android tablets.  I use the spen a lot and really like the TW feature of the Note series.  I upgrade my phone yearly.  But I've been holding off on getting Note 5 because of the upcoming Lumia 950XL. My point is, being an avid android user for about 5 yrs now, rooting and flashing different ROMs has been like a routine for me and its really fun.  But I'm willing to switch to the Lumia series without a doubt.  I also see a lot of android users starting to get really bored of the android ecosystem and are looking to try something else again. 
  • Great article, but i am unable to purchase a white 950XL  (as there is no stock) in the Microsoft UK store. Does that means they did not make enough? or does it mean that it is selling well?...only time will tell.
  • It means they are not on sale yet.
  • Not able to order now from the UK, you have to now register intrest. Earlier this week i managed to make an order but it was cancelled because of no stock.  When i now try even for the Black it says register intrest.
  • The out of stock message was an error, these devices are not on sale yet, we don't even have a date other than "November" when it will happen.
  • I've seen Amazon selling the Lumia 950 and Lumia 950XL
  • Windows 10 Mobile isn't out yet.  Advanced orders with the placeholder Dec 12th.
  • it must mean there selling well i pre ordered mine on Tuesday will have it by the 3rd of December  
  • You may be able to pre-order but they haven't actually come out yet. Windows 10 Mobile is still in testing.
  • Mobiles Direct, Expansys, Clove have some white ones, as I expect Carphone Warehouse will.
  • Nice thought piece but premature. Very little marketing yet on these phones. When W10M is ready then expect the floodgates to open, including AT&T. Not a single review is out yet, but I fully expect these phones will turn heads across the tech world. I also expect some surprises still. Maybe some new 1st party apps or Android ports.
    Personally, I bought a cheap 930 only last month because I was disappointed with the leaked renders. But that was before I saw the covers, which change everything.
    I'm waiting for the reviews, but if these phones are even half as good as I think then (annoyingly) I'll probably be upgrading a second time in just a few months!
  • Always enjoy reading your articles.
  • "If fans don't like having the latest Lumias who will?" Seems like you've been rubbing your prejudice upon others. They are a great piece of hardware period. I'd buy them in a heartbeat if I had some money. And this kind of wording is what puts them in negative light.
  • Maybe you will, but I doubt even among the Windows Phones fans these phones will be received warmly. I have to disagree with the major pojnt of the article: WP fans aren't comparing 950 and XL with the future Surface phones. The looks of these phones simply don't spell "premium". Compared to today's flagships, a fully plastic device just looks cheap. Remember the very first reaction to leaks of 950 and XL? People were hoping the leaks were wrong and the phones don't look so awkward when they waited for 3 years to at least see a premium, true flagship; they were hoping not for features - these two devices are feature packed and in many areas unrivalled - but for the "cool sense" and these two lack exactly that.
  • You held one at the ms store? It does not look cheap. And there are cases and will be more
  • @AgentTheGreat I totally agree about the design aspect being important. I simply dislike this design and was very disappointed it was used on a highly important release, but this i accept is personal choice. The tech side I would be very happy with, especially running the efficient Windows OS. The design is lazy, in dropping a screen into a bit of plastic, that looks just like the basic level $99 phones. But, others will love this design and I do hope it will be successful, as I love Microsoft software and Surface and will probably wait for the next models that will reflect a premium product design.
  • Indeed! The problem is that how these phone looks. The spec and features are great and generally well received, only the looks that happens to be a critical factor too for a flagship device. I think fans will still going to buy it but also its not easy to blame for those who don't, looks is as important factor as the specs on the flagship. This is not a cheap phone to begin with and users deserve to have a stunning looking device, especially in comparison to the competition. 3rd party shells are great but the cost and availability of those will not serve to other consumers. Honestly this is rather a single mistake on Microsoft part, to have these phones with bland looks or a looks that won't appeal to many, only it's few super hard core fans. The dream of Surface Phone is already been a trend for a long time but that doesn't mean people are really holding off and waiting for the "mythical" device. Actually that force of that dream became stronger that is contributed by the underwhelming looks of these new flagship. If they've just release a updated design of 830 but with same exact specs of 950 and 950 XL. It will be generally well received more not just by its fans but also other non-Lumia people.
  • I'm not sure what your talking all of the Samsung Galaxy phones (aside from the newest iteration) were plastic phones with removable batteries just like the Lumia 950/XL, those were flagship phones that were well received.. I also honestly don't get the design complaints there are only so much you can do with a rectangle. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • From Galaxy S3, S4 and maybe even S5 are generally criticized by its looks. About being a plastic phone, its more of a feel of those old Galaxy phones while Lumia at that time also use plastic but praised alot because of its nice premium feel and great iconic looks. New Lumia 950/XL fortunately doesn't look fugly (thank goodness) but looks bland and uninspiring. They're indeed feels great in the hand though and that's always a good thing. About the rectangle thing, yeah they're all rectangle phones but that doesn't mean there only few things we can do about it. The problem is not because of the materials, being removable or being rectangular, its the general apperance of the device. It doesn't give any impression they look anything premium when consumers glance on it. I don't think it can spark interest from consumers who don't even know what Lumia is, especially the lack of color choices to show on the stores these will just blend in the sea of black or white phones. The only factor remains is the spec and features of these flagships that will make it an attractive buy, the problem is that the first barrier is its looks. In this case I hope at least all Microsoft stores (the converted Nokia stores) will feature Continuum and specs alot! Show marketing banners that these phones can connect to the monitor to show the prowness of Continuum. Showing just the body of the phone won't do a justice. So the statement of these phones are for the fans, its true. These are 'only' for Windows phone users who wants flagship right now. Not all fans though as even here and some other sites, number of current Lumia/Windows phone users are not even fond of the look of these phones but they do like the specs. So I don't even think if these devices will sell that alot and I think Microsoft is not expecting anything. So even if these devices will not be a mass sucess, they will still make another W10M devices next year and well try again. All I can think is that these X50 series will be just a filler line-up, a stop-gap for something hopefully best yet. With the abysmal situation of Windows phones, there is no reason to hold back by next year.
  • I could not agree more and I'll be buying a 950XL when they become available.
  • True. There's only so much you can do with a rectangle. Most phones look the same these days.
  • Disagree! These phones are very premium and fine. There is nothing necessarily low-end about plastic. Polycarbonate can be a highly engineered material and will give these phones superior radio reception and wireless charging capabilities over metal competitors.
  • This doesn't speak for me. I think they are very "premium". I played around with them a bit in the Store. Posted from this here device.
  • What OS version was on them?
  • Maybe you will, but I doubt even among the Windows Phones fans these phones will be received warmly. I have to disagree with the major pojnt of the article: WP fans aren't comparing 950 and XL with the future Surface phones. The looks of these phones simply don't spell "premium". Compared to today's flagships, a fully plastic device just looks cheap. Remember the very first reaction to leaks of 950 and XL? People were hoping the leaks were wrong and the phones don't look so awkward when they waited for 3 years to at least see a premium, true flagship; they were hoping not for features - these two devices are feature packed and in many areas unrivalled - but for the "cool sense" and these two lack exactly that. Couple that with limited distribution among carriers and bad marketing that led to a lot of confusion about Continuum (many still think the dock is necessary and no one knows how a keyboard-less Continuum would work) and you have, yet again, a recipe for Microsoft's trademark PR disaster.
  • Agent wants more metal!!!!
    Get a 950 then, big ol PREMIUM looking metal ring by the camera!!!
    How about if it was 24k gold then would it sell better?
  • Only if it were a golden piece of fruit.
  • I'd like a mixture a gun metal body with removable polycarbonate back rounded corners and that sexy curved glass speaker on the bottom of phone away from camera. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Agree with you totally except that I am perfectly happy with polycarbonate. I also think the Lumia 810 is the most grip-friendly and I expect similar gripping experience from the 950s.
  • Agree with you! I like the polycarbonate look and feel too. I loved it on my 1520, 830 and now on the 640XL. And, in my opinion, all three phones look and feel very good. Having said that, the phone for me is the 950XL (in black!), which I also think looks premium enough. And, as for the specs...well, that is not a subjective matter like looks and feel. The specs are there for all to see and experience.
  • I am happy with polycarbonate and happy with the brushed aluminium edge on my 930 - but my favourite design was the one-piece polycarbonate 920 in red and with a beautiful curved screen.
  • There is no aluminium edge on 930, is an aluminium chassis. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I loved my 810 to death! I can't wait to get my 950
  • I think they look premium. And I would also add that, inless it's designed very well, a metal phone is more prone to call drops. I agree with the article, and I've made this comment before: If these phones don't sell reasonably well, I don't think there will ever be a Surface phone.
  • Agree.
  • Yes, I felt the same way... It's like convincing masses to buy these phones... But, those who want to buy will definitely buy them sooner or later. I want to give up on my Lumia 920 and get 950xl but money matters, especially considering the exchange rate of my currency and import duties, but I will get one after some time... AND I don't want Microsoft to give up on Windows mobile
  • If the Lumia950s do fail, it won't be because existing WP users say "no" to them. It'll be because of the lack of availability on various carriers stateside and lack of global availability. And, to succeed as a platform, you need to convert iOS and Android users to W10M users. You simply can't expect to succeed by having your 3% userbase (fans, as you all them) buying your devices. Not all of them will, for various reasons; not just because they're waiting for the next flagship. Most of the Lumias out there are mid to low end and not all of those users may be able to upgrade to flagships.
  • For that there should be a imaging flagship
  • I agree with you...If microsoft gives an imaging flagship with better camera than all previous lumia flagships that is faster than current competition, many people will try to switch. Also, many windows fans are waiting to upgrade. If new imaging flagship is not launched, they may switch to android/ios
  • This camera IS better than any they have ever made. Didn't you listen to any interviews with Juha?
  • It might be more responsive than the camera in the 1020, but it's not better. That lossless oversampling zoom in the 1020, plus the low noise when the whole sensor is used and oversampled, still hasn't been bettered by anything.
  • The camera on the 1020 is excellent but not unbeatable. Let's wait for the reviews before we right off the massive improvements to the pixel quality & processing algorithms on the new Lumia's. The only thing the 1020 has going for it on paper are the larger sensor, more megapixels & xenon flash (debatable). Everything thing else is a step up.  Let's not forget that these phones also have relatively large sensors & also employ oversampling.
  • I agree with this, the lack of carrier support will be the reason that WP fails. You can not get people to buy a phone thta is not available on the majority of carriers...
  • why are everyone on here so dependent on carriers I found that if the carrier I'm on don't support the phone I want I simply switch carriers if enough people would do this then Verizon would have no choice but to carry said phone or loss customers and Verizon don't like to lose customers.
  • If ALL Windows Phone users switched from Verizon, it would hardly be noticeable to them. WP users come up with some crazy theories because they don't seem to get just how small the userbase it's in comparison to iphone/android.
  • Say even 10, 000 users leave. That's a huge profit drop. I mean most companies have a winback for individual people. It does matter to them. Even say 1,000 users. That's a lot.
  • Verizon added 2.5 million customers last quarter. A drop of 10,000 would have barely been noticed. They would have just added 2,490,000 users. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • The goal of any company is to get as many users as possible.  Being non-challant about 10,000 users would not make the investors happy.  10,000 could easily turn to more as people start recommending other carriers they are using.  But again, I don't think it's Verizon's fault in this case since certifiying the bands and then doing the verizon 3rd party certification program should allow people to use these phones on Verizon's network.
  • A drop of 1000 users is very noticeable especially if its within the same time period. Don't you dare think that one thousand less users isn't a big deal because your business will fail in the long run.
  • Verizon's numbers are a bit misleading.  The company only added 400,000+ phone customers.  The rest were tablets and other connected devices.
  •   Don't forget the worlds biggest single market, which is Europe. Here in Europe Windows Phone is mostly  on par with Apple. Here in Germany it is ~15% Apple and ~13% Windows Phone, rest is Android. In a few other countries like Italy, Windows even surpassed Apple. Also the market shares of Apple and Windows are both growing, while Android is losing big in most EU countries.
  • Many reasons: Because there is only one carrier with reliable signal, employer provided service are the two biggest. West of the Mississippi ATT/TMo have pretty spotty indoor coverage outside of urban areas - until you get to the west coast.
  • How the fuck you could be the richest and strongest country in the world and have such a fucking weak telephone services.I live in Romania in a fucking small town in the mountains and i have reception every where,in the mountains ,inside  my apartament witch has 50 cm thick wall of concrete and metal,in every fucking  mountain hole and in any forest around and u still dont have reception outside towns.We have like 99% of the country covered.Buys phone 800+ dolars ,dont ahve reception.U suck.
  • Have you forgotten that the US is a country that is the 3/4 largest on area alone with over 3.6 million miles while Romania is a another small European country, excluding Russia (European Russia I suppose) Europe is about as large as the mainland US I think excluding Russia and Hawaii I think (with Europe being slightly larger) Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • This is one long, long time Verizon customer who will be switching to AT&T just to get the 950XL.  I've been with Verizon since they were Bell Atlantic and they don't support Windows Phones.  My 928 will be leaving Verizon as soon as I get a 950XL.
  • I switched from Verizon last year for the Lumia 830. I don't regret my choice at all. (:
  • Even if all the carriers in the US carried the L950's, they woud still have to pretend to like Microsoft and recommend these phones to potential buyers.  The main issue I see is that carrier employees  don't recommend WP phones.  They seldom do.  Microsoft needs to start advertising and marketing their phones heavily.  For a company that once claimed the the beta testing was over, that's all they've been doing the past 3 years.
  • I called a MICROSOFT STORE yesterday asked a question and salesman told me to hold on while he Googled it, so I wouldn't say its carrier specific Who Da, but you are right as well
    Once again they'll spend hundreds of millions to force the NFL to showcase surfaces, even when on screen people had to be taught/paid numerous times to quit calling them ipads and other non windows terms, yet wont pay to have their own staff or carrier staff properly trained on WP.
    Call ATT the proud carrier of WP and tell me how long it takes to get someone on the phone that knows ANYTHING beyond what the screen says about WP they have for sale.
    MICROSOFT holds responsibility for this, their ego is to blame
  • "... while he Googled it..."  Now that's funny.  :)  I always use the term "Bing it".  Lol! 
    Most employees who sell WP devices do not know anything about WP or very little.  That's the sad fact.  I keep hearing all these reason why WP doesn't sell in the US, but to me the answer is simple; get carrier employees to start recommending these devices.  If that's not going to happen then it may just be a lost cause.  And if MS is going to advertise use "Great" catchy music while showing some great features of what the phone actually does.  AND NOT MICROSOFT OFFICE STUFF!  Something that actually builds intrigue.  It's great to be able to use if for work.  But I would think people use their phones for fun stuff. 
    I realize it's hard to market an OS that you're changing every 13 months.  So hopefully with Windows 10 they'll be able to be more stabalized and then advertise like hell in the near future!
  • I said that exactly, you mean Bing it right..... He replied, you're right I'm sorry that's just habit......smh.
    I tell people to Bing it all the time the looks are awesome
  • The thing I don't understand is that it seems like everyone agrees that the specs make it as "high-end" as anyone is going to see on a phone right now, right?  It has features that none of the other phones have, right?  Great camera, etc, etc, etc...RIGHT?  So, is it just the protective back case that everyone is wanting to scream "SURFACE"???  With the ability to swap out the entire back case of the phone, someone could EASILY make a "Surface Cover", heck MS could even do it, offer it to new 950 owners at a reduced rate or free as a promo (Like my camera grip on my 1020 when it launched).   Slap that black or silver magnesium back on your interanlly-spec'd monster phone and BOOM!  Surface phone!   I for one think the phone looks amazing, and will not dig into my pockets or my palm like my 1020, so I don't understand what people expect the thing to look like, it looks great to me!   A metal "Surface Cover" would be pretty dang slick though...RIGHT?  
  • Just a FYI, the laws of radio propogation would argue against it.  You need blank plates to allow the signal to pass, if you don't have that you end up with what Apple had with Antenaegate or worse still a device that doesn't get a signal in moderate to low strength areas. That's why you don't see full metal phones, you see metal on them but in very specific zones.
  • I do understand this issue with antena's on phones as you mention, but I am curious how they were able to accomplish this on the LTE Surface 3's?  Perhaps they could take advantage of the ring around the camera to have a gap to allow for the antena?   Either way, someone could easily make a case that screams "High-End" for everyone who hates the look of the phone.  I'm persaonlly looking forward to those real leather cases unveiled with the launch, those are sweet!   I agree that a premium phone should look premium, but I also don't understand that people seem fine to believe that iPhones and Galaxy's are premium phones.  The galaxy line has always been about specs, not looks, why does it work for Samsung and not for Microsoft?  And iphones are the most boring phone on the planet if you ask me! All that being said, to me quality is more about durability than looks.  My iphone 5 is so dainty in my palm, I could easily crush it if I wanted...Drop it and the screen will surely explode (I never did drop it luckily).  My nokia 1020 has had a couple horrible tumbles without a case and all I have is one slightly dented corner, and thats only because it has sharp edges, otherwise it would have mearly been a scuff.  Poly is way stronger than aluminum or glass, but I guess the APPEARENCE of quality is the way of the world these days unfortunately.  
  • I agree also,the Mozo Accessories on Lumiaa bring out that style,I don't know what people want,the phone I a beast
  • that'll be left to the 3rd parties anyway.
    The Surface phone has nothing to do with appearance. The reason we want one is because the Surface line isnt a line of Microsoft branded premium products, its becasue the Surface line does things noone else does or can do. Slapping a magnesium back and calling it a surface phone defeats the purpose. Unless Panay and his team can do something cool with the hardware AND hardware/software interaction of the phone that redefines what a phone is, I don't want one, because that destroys the very name of Surface.​ True we want something that looks like a surface, but if it means just slapping a new shell on the kinds of phones that already exist, then the surface phone should stay a dream. I'm buying a 950 because I need the phone, but im upgrading to a surface phone when it comes ASAP, because it wont just be a spec upgrade. itll be a surface in the way that redefines the phone industry, with new features that noone else has thought of, not just a new appearance and a spec upgrade. Changing the appearance of a lumia to look like a surface kind of mocks the surface line of products too. and I don't think Microsoft would allow 3rd parties to do that anyway because what I described is how they seem to view the surface line as well.
  • This time around, Microsoft seems to have pulled their head out of their ass when it comes to distribution. These devices are all being sold unlocked from Microsoft's retail and online stores. In the past they were only available via carriers in north America. It's a huge step forward. Here in Canada, the best windows phone available currently is the 1020. The fact that we are getting these devices within the next month or so is huge. It shows Microsoft is finally thinking outside of the USA for once.
  • This. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Cant help but to agree on the part of availability as I think they've over priced it for off contract
  • Nice article..but I wish turn out to be wrong...I love windows phone & I want it to succeed eventually...
  • It will succeed
  • Especially it's Windows 10 now. Not Windows Phone anymore.
  • Not sure what your idea of success is but it would take many years and a super compelling feature for that to happen. No, continuum is not a compelling enough reason to stop people from running to android or ios. I'd be surprised anyone outside of windows phone enthusiast would have even heard of continuum.  Realistically the most amount of market share they can gain next year will be 4-5% and that is being super optimistic. Im willing to bet it wont go past 7%.
  • Yet another great article. I really enjoyed reading it. Though I have to point out that it is also Microsoft's responsibility to market the phone more than what they're doing now to generate interests in potential customers and the WP faithful. Most people just meh'd the 950/XL because of how they unveiled the phone during their Windows 10 Devices showcase. Compared to how they unnveiled the Surface Pro & Book, the phone's unveiling were rather.. Well, you get my point. If even Microsoft meh'd their own product, then surely customers would follow suit. But I don't think it's too late for Microsoft to generate consumer's interest in this phone. As you said, people are 'eagerly' waiting for a Surface Phone but that phone may not even be developed if the newly unveiled flagship didn't sell well, right? I think If Microsoft were to guarantee anyone who bought the new 950/XL a price cut if they trade-in these phones for the Surface Phones when they come out later, then people would surely be interested to buy the 950/XL.
  • This would be a good plan cause for me, I would love to get a 950, but I'm with ATT, and I rely on subsides. If I were to get a 950, I'd be locked into a two year contract and not able to get a surface phone. I can't get on their Next (or is it Jump) program cause that would mean losing my unlimited data plan I have grandfathered in from ATT; which means I'm essentially stuck waiting for next year's phone and holding onto my 920 for what will be over 3 years.
  • i have a 925 and in exactly the same boat. MSoft need to copy Apple and create a 'leaseing / contract' ownership method. I am just not convinced MSoft has any interest in Windows on ARM having brought into other brilliant bits of hardware, L800, L925 and L2520. All brilliant harware with 'eventually' stable software left unloved by MSoft. What a quandry.
  • Good article. Problem is that without working on Verizon, there are a lot of us in the US that won't buy it no matter how good it is. Therein lies the conundrum.
  • Yes, fair point hopmedic. However the world doesn't revolve around the US :P. Windows phone has high market penetration in alot of countries. Over all it is doing way better than Blackberry, who every one conveniently forgets is teetering on the brink of extinction.
  • I don't recall saying that the world revolved around the US. If I did, please forgive my stupidity. But just like when you comment from your perspective, I comment from mine. Don't be so obtuse.
  • The app world does revolve around the US. Without penetrating here, app developers won't cafe. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Exactly...I've (hopefully temporarily) moved to a Note 5 loaded with my Microsoft ecosystem because, well, I'm on Verizon and cannot get the 950xl. And the more I use it, the more I like it, even the camera. Tired of "wait and see" as fan of WP. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I was also tired of 5 years of wait and see....I am on an HTC One M9 (from an M8 Windows, Lumia 1520, 920, HTC Titan, and Samsung Focus) and loving having any app i want basically and Android 5.1 runs super smooth. I have not had any performance problems with Android.
  • Audio quality from phones is super high on my priority list also and sadly it's something I'm afraid microsoft will ignore. I love HTCs focus on the audiophile
  • I'm taking a "wait and see" approach to windows mobile 10 from here
  • There is nothing audiophilic in the product! It may have decent sound for a phone (or maybe even great for a phone), but that is far far far far away from an audiophilic sound. 15€ speakers have better sound as any phone...
  • The M9 is a phone that has enough power for my headphones without the need for an external amplifier. Never was I referencing the BoomSound speakers of the phone as all phone speakers are not good. Also not looking to get into a "I'm more audiophile than you" kind of argument. Bottom line for me is that the M9 is an amazing digital music player that is also a phone. There is virtually no stereo crosstalk at all which is super rare in any cellphone. Posted via my HTC One M9
  • Again, 15€ speakers are better than this HTC One M9.
  • You seem to just have a hard on for hating HTC, because your not comprehending what I am saying at all....a Bluetooth speaker is not a DAP. I'm not commenting on using the HTC One M9 as a Bluetooth speaker. Posted via my HTC One M9
  • You mean loudspeaker not BT speaker right? BT speaker is when you stream it to the unit.
    If you mean it's audiophilic music player, then answer is no. But it could be better then iPod or something similar.
    Short anwser, it's not audiophilic product. The end. Ps: I don't hate HTC or anybody else (ok I really don't like iPhone :D). It's for sure nicer then Lumia 950&xl, but won't be getting HTC for OS reasons.
  • Sorry I forgot you are the authority on what sounds good to my ears. The phone to be able to drive audiophile level headphones is what I am referencing here with the One m9. It has high volume levels and no stereo crosstalk. Go to and you will find a lot of people there have high praise for the One M9 as a phone/DAP. Is it better than a $1000 DAP? Of course not. But for something that is a phone it's one of the best in the market. All you have stated is some cheap speakers are better than the M9 which makes no sense because I've never said the speakers on the m9 are great, no speakers on a phone are. Posted via my HTC One M9
  • You clearly don't get it. What is good for your ears or great or even Godlike quality for you, does not mean it is for others or anyone else or all. Often people praise iPod for their music quality and so on, but it's not audiophilic product. By DAP you mean? digital player? Then no. You simply don't understand what I'm talking about. It's not audiophilic product. I'm not talking it's not good product, good for the money or so (audiophilic are never good money/performance vice), you are simply abusing word audiophil! It was about the word.
  • The word isn't being butchered at all, it's just some people like yourself who have this elitist view or attitude when the word is used. I'll help you out ..... Audiophile - An individual who is very interested and enthusiastic about the sound quality of a stereo or home theater system. I used it in my original post correctly saying I appreciate HTCs focus on the audiophile, meaning they care about sound and audio quality from their devices. Your just trying to be a dick for whatever reason. Posted via my HTC One M9
  • Basicly you are saying that by that definiton almost all product are audiophilic no matter of what quality the product is. If someone is building a player, then he must ofcourse thougt about good sound and ofcourse he build audiophilic product. No matter if it's on paar with cheap shit chineese player nor if it has the lowest possible score on review chart?
    I am not saying you are not audiophile, i disagree about a product being audiophilic!
  • That isn't even remotely close to what I was saying the definition of audiophile. When a company makes it a point to upgrade the audio hardware over almost every other phone out there, I would say in the category of PHONES, remember that's what we are talking about, the measurements and test numbers don't lie, nor do the users of, but I digress as you are the lone defender of your coveted use of the word audiophile and are just looking to argue for sake of arguing. I hope I brought you enjoyment in your quest to win the interwebs. Posted via my HTC One M9
  • Blackberry audio smashes HTC to honest
  • Yea blackberry gives some clean output but still introduces a lot of stereo crosstalk where the M9 is near perfect in that regard. Posted via my HTC One M9
  • switch enough Verizon customers switch to att guess what within a year Verizon will be asking Microsoft for there version of the 950/950 xl stand up people stop being a slave to you carrier make you voices heard
  • And as I've said before in other comments, for some of us, ATT is not a choice that is worth considering due to coverage. For some, Verizon is the ONLY acceptable solution. I'm not a slave to a carrier. I am one who chooses to have service. Try to remember that not everyone is you.
  • People here say that and it's outdated marketing speak. Posted from this here device.
  • Nothing outdated about it. I actually HAVE switched to Sprint, ATT, and TMO. After each, I came back. It wasn't because Verizon had the phone I wanted. After years of my step-daughter using various prepaids, and my telling her that she should switch, she finally switched to Verizon prepaid last month. She gets a lot less data than she did on StraightTalk, but she is extremely surprised at how much better her phone works now. Don't use your experience to call me a liar about mine.
  • Slow down, killer. I said "people here" . Posted from this here device.
  • Outdated reference to the days when Verizon's CDMA network, was the most profuse, in America. They are dismantling their older network, to provide bandwidth, for their newer faster network, and it it actually no more prolific, than AT&T's. They are taking their time to discontinue their 3g network, but check the Root Network scores and you'll so they are no longer the only reliable carrier, in America. CDMA, is really dead, as there was no way to build upon its bones, except GSM, so that tired, red map, is a thing of the past. People saying that Verizon offers better coverage, outside of specific areas, where they were also the phone company, like NYC is more rare, by the day. Verizon, and AT&T are separated by only a slim margin of customers, with AT&T actually having the highest ARPU is the industry. Thats the high dollar customer, btw, and their rates are lower than Verizon's! Because businesses need a less reliable network? I think not. Stop trotting out "Can you hear me now," marketing bs. AT&T has the phone you want. Verizon won't. Its simple. If you're cooking dinner, and your grocer doesn't carry the main ingredient, do you just never cook that dish? No. You go to Grocery B, and pick it up. When your Grocer A, see he missed a sale, he'll start carrying the item, or forgo your business. I dont understand the loyalty to a provider that doesn't ALLOW the devices YOU want, on their network. Its like being handed the keys to a Ford Escort, when you went to buy a Cadillac CTS, just because you like the dealer's tv ads.
  • Nothing outdated about it. I actually HAVE switched to Sprint, ATT, and TMO. After each, I came back. It wasn't because Verizon had the phone I wanted. After years of my step-daughter using various prepaids, and my telling her that she should switch, she finally switched to Verizon prepaid last month. She gets a lot less data than she did on StraightTalk, but she is extremely surprised at how much better her phone works now. Don't use your experience to call me a liar about mine.
  • Thanks for the great article. I think you are right on. When the 930 came out I didn't buy it because I wanted to replace my 1020 with a 1030. I waited, and waited but no 1030 ever came. Then this year I finally got a 930, and I wish I'd gotten it on day one. The other valid point that many people in this thread are making is carrier support. Microsoft promised to solve the carrier problem in the US this year, and I suspect the delayed US rollout of the 950s is because they were about to get it wrong and they are trying to change strategy. We'll see.
  • EVIL CrApple that has monopoly in ALL U.S. carriers will NEVER let that happen. CrApple has these carriers by their balls. So you guys can thank CrApple for anything is happening to Windows phns. ATT seems like the only one with more balls than others.
  • The law enforcer also makes love to himself, and births does that tie in to the surface?
  • this is an interesting article. I find myself in the dilemna most WP people are in. I feel the 950/950xl is the last arm based flagship phone. if I buy this, will windows phones be updated, or will it become the next RT device? This does have a great camera, which is a large part of why I've enjoyed windows phones in the past. I do see this as a flagship with no exceptions taken.  regarding pen, I've used a pen on an 8" device(asus vivotab note 8). it works, but i prefer using the pen on a 10" device. also most people I've seen with the note 4 or note 5 don't usually use the pen. that said, if the capability is there, put it in. don't be like apple and not put it in because the device manufacturer deems it not good. As far as i know, the 950xl may have the capability for pen, but it's not being enabled. which kind of bums me out. that's why i've enjoyed my surface. it's elevated the tablet. the ipad and android tablets are basically large phones, at least from a app development background. the surface is working from a pc background, where large displays are the norm. on top of that, msft is trying to make devices that aren't just what's out there. a lot of tech writers are saying the surface book should just be a macbook air. This is why I don't like reading their reviews about surface products. other then evaluating their hardware specs and judging the device based on how well they can write their article, they don't really write anything that makes me think they've evaluated the capability of the device. The surface pro 3's camera sucked. it wasn't autofocusing, but most writers didn't really pick up on that. I picked up on that the first time I used it in onenote to take a picture of a engineering planset for markups. That's why i switched to the surface 3. now, one note doesnt have an office lens like camera function, mainly because they're developing apps for ios and android first. seriously. no really. all the people that are working on onenote right now came from the windows 8 org and are bitter about that release, so they have no passion for the windows app. they'll get to it eventually, but they just don't care about it. ugg. rant done. where was I? oh yeah, the next flagship windows phone has to change they way we look at phones, and change the way we look at phones. at this point, i expect the next phone to include some form of hologram rendering and 3d scanning capability, and create an interactive environment to communicate these things. I want a part of the hololens put in the phone.
  • I would be surprised if this were the least ARM based windows phone - Intel just isn't there yet. Besides most change their phones every two or so years and I wouldn't jump to a 1st generation Intel based solution until it showed decent battery life in a mobile platform. I intend to get one of these when my 830 is ready to be replaced! PS - is it only mo or do others have trouble entering messages here! Every time I hit the Carriage Return, the cursor goes to the beginning of the text frame and I have to cursor down to the end.  it is really aggravating...    
  • x86 android tablet runs practically all apps from Google Play. Why would Windows phone - arm or x86 - be any different? Windows Store apps are pretty much .NET apps (c#, c++, javascript etc). Tools (or Store?) can create precompiled binary code for both architectures when needed.
  • You are awesome. You just lift our morale. But I like Lumia design more than the surface. As you said, the important thing is the software. Otherwise Moto phones would not have sold. Because they look horrible.
  • Hi Jason, as usual a great read for the weekend! Thanks! I've literally just come out of the EE store in Reading, UK and the guy there confirmed that EE will be getting both the 950 and 950XL as the Microsoft rep came to the store yesterday. He also said it would be next month doesn't have a form date but he thinks it will be the 27th of November. I for one am not rejecting the new phones, I'm certain Microsoft will bring the Surface Phone and blow these two out of the water, but as you said these are literally the best phones yet, and with no good confirmation on when the Surface Phone will be released, I don't think it's worth waiting for. But for sure I will pick up the Surface Phone 2 when it's had a chance to mature both for hardware and software.
  • I can't wait to get my AWESOME Lumia 950XL, which is 10000000000000x better than ALL iJUNK overrated trash combined, tha has crappie and very low mAh battery, NO removable battery/back cover, still at 720 res screen, NO Liquid Cooling, NO gorilla glass 4, NO full NFC, NO wireless charging, horrible 12 pix camera, NO triple RGB flash, NO dedicated camera button, NO Glance, NO microSD slot,....................... and so many more which it does NOT have. If people(Windows Central:-))would just have 950/950XL compared to all iJUNK devices Side x Side in DETAIL(detail specs of the Cameras, detail specs of their batteries, detail specs of their screens...........with photos), and let people see the ""FULL SPECS"" of these phns, with prices next to each other and see what you are really getting with each device since Crapple iJUNK cost more and more with extra storage space, it would open peoples eyes. Just look at what i mentioned above, about several SPECS here, that no iJUNK has to this date. However, for some reason Dan does not mentions iany of them, nor shows how superior 950/950XL's are compare to overrated iJUNK phns in every category(beside Apps). Dan acts as if he is disappointed with these AWESOME phns, and shows more affection towards iJUNK phns, than 950/950XL. I mean really??? I held a 950XL in my hand, and played with it for several mins at MS retail store, and i LOVED IT right away, 100000000x more than iJUNK. It felt great in my hand, Vs. iJUNK phns that feels like holding an aluminum foil. In addition, the that 2.5K OLED screen with its Camera on 950XL were unbelievable and fantastic, when i was playing with it. Better than any camera on any phn i have played with. So these AWESOME phns should NOT be compared to iJUNK 6S/6S+ with such a low specs. If someone disagrees with me, PLEASE let me know 1 spec on iJUNK phns that is better than 950/950XL phns(Please don't say APPS, 1st I don't give a crap about apps i have all the apps i need in Win store, 2nd APPS is NOT hardware specs).  However, if I had to compare 950/950XL to other brands, it would NOT be to the iJUNK. That's for sure. It would be to the AWESOME and AMAZING SONY Xperia Z5 Premium waterproof, with 4K screen. Now that phn is something to compare 950/950XL to, since both have AWESOME cameras, and BOTH have very high specs. The sad part is CrApple has always COPIED Sony's design from day one and still does it to this date, but noone ever mentions it. However, SONY design is a perfection with superior quality and material they use. So if i had to say one design is better than 950/950XL is this SONY 4K phn. it is absolutely is the most beautiful phn out there. I wish Sony would have Win10 version of that phn in 2016. That would be awesome, but.....................if people want to know where CrApple got the design idea of their iJUNK from, just search for """""apple COPIED SONY"""""", and then click on the images(BING or GOOGLE), and take a look at Sony's device they had way before 2007 iJUNK came out. And if you look at Xperia Z1, Z2, Z3, Z4, and now Z5, you can clearly see where CrApple is getting their design ideas from again and again. Not sure why SONY does not sue the crap out of CrApple. I personally would be sick and tired of that, specially when CrApple pretends it was all their own ideas. Steve COPY Jobs and CrApple were/are nothing but a copycat, but amazing in LYING, PRETENDING, FOOLING, MISLEADING, BRAINWASHING,..........low IQ people, to think otherwise.  
  • I totally agree with you, but your harsh words make me think that you were laid off by crAPPLE.
  • Hey he's our mascot, leave him alone while he does his clown routine
  • He's an embarrassment to Microsoft fans of all stripes, and his posts make me cringe.
  • Man. I really enjoy reading your works. They are really well written and informative.
  • I have just 1 question for you, what movie were you talking about?
  • Sounded like "Looper" with Bruce Willis. That's what I thought anyway.
  • Yep, looper
  • No, it's Predestination.
  • wow, this was a great read, and by the time i read last lines I was like damn thats amazing.
  • Asinine article.
  • @stephen Thanks for the time you took both to read the article and add to the discussion. Of course we don't have to agree on various points and perspective. I feel that your concise response can be expanded upon to better communicate what points you are in disagreement with. Thanks again!
  • The column is not worth the effort. It's nothing but specious and hollow negative speculation. 
  • Hi Stephen. Thanks for the response. I actually believe that it I more a positive analysis if the impact Microsoft's best efforts yet with a first-party Lumia can have on it UWP and ecosystem if accepted and well distributed. The fact is, the majority of Windows Phones sold have been to the low end segment. As mentioned in the first installment of this series(link in my first comment at top). That majority ( though not all) of that segment has no particular passion for the platform over all. They likely just wanted a cheap phone rather than really seeking a Windows Phone. So that segment in general won't necessarily champion the platform. Now the fans, they will champion the platform. It is this base to whom the critical Lumia 950/XL are targeted per Nadella. If that base passes on these devices which are positioned to not only debut "first-party hardware" but the Mobile portion of the UWP, that the impact on the platform could be negative; I feel that is a fair and accurate analysis.
  • You damn the platform will faint praise in the form of quasi intellectual arguments based on false supposition people who own the phone are either fanboys or spendthrifts. The environment is much more complicated.
  • Hi Stephen. I wholly agree that the environment is far more complicated than the brief encapsulation I submitted in the previous comment. Actually my acknowledgment of that reality is evident in that this piece is the 8th in a series of analytical pieces delving into that very complexity. Certainly my previous comment does not adequately sum up how I perceive this very dynamic, diverse and exciting environment! As writers and industry watchers we both(as well as many others like the many fans at this site) see the sheer complexity and excitement of the industry. :-) If so inclined, you may peruse my previous submissions of how I view this very complex industry and Microsoft's role therein. The 8 part series is here:
    Finally I have great confidence in the platform and understand that there are a myriad of variables that contribute to its success. :-)
  • Never engage with those whom only feel comfortable criticizing others. I believe the vast majority of readers enjoyedb the article. Posted from this here device.
  • Nice article, Jason! Congrats. Two things though: 1) Take me out of the "meh" fan base and this into consideration, please, next time. ; ) 2) After a long piece making a point, at the end, I feel that the following might not have been an easy decision: "...I could be wrong...". I disagree on both, but read quickly, so maybe missed something inbetween the lines...
  • Good article, Jason! The contract for my Icon is up in April 2016.  I just hope that whatever fool reason Verizon is not allowing the 950 is resolved by then ... I love my Icon, but I will want the next latest and greatest!  I also want to stay with Verizon, for coverage reasons.  I live in the West, and coverage is very important!
  • I live in the West and have great coverage with AT&T. Posted from this here device.
  • So basically, we hardcore fans need to stop being so damn fickle and go buy the damn phone. I want one and will wait for TELUS to release it.
  • Answer to that is to release the darn phones and we'll see if it is or not. There's no point discussing this now. I wanna have this phone so I can show this phone off to my colleagues.
  • How could people get excited for a phone whose OS is still under testing? First finish a full version of w10 and then we'll see. Also many people see w10 as a step back from wp8.1.
  • I'd like to buy a 950 but the fact it's $1000-1100 AUD in Australia means I would either have to save for a while to buy it unlocked or hope Telstra offers it for a reasonable price. Although the high price is due to the low performing Australian dollar, it's too much money for me at the moment...
  • Dear Jason, I'm sick and tired to read excuses that this devices are from Elop's era, they are from Nokia bla bla. Enough excuses. That was years ago. The big fail is the dull design of the phones. They are cheap, plastic ones, like 640. And the design can be change years ago, but they fail. Why? Because Microsoft never made flagship before. They do not know what to deliver. Who need removable battery? Only blind fans that are less than 1-2%. Who really need wireless charging if you have fast charging already? And because of that they made cheap plastic design, instead of metal one. And thats all Microsoft. Look the last flagship from Nokia - 930. This new phones doesn't have anything in common. No metal frame, ugly camera looking modules. Who the hell made theis design?!? Cooling system isn't something WOW. Sony have the same in Z5 and isn't saving the phone from heating. This so overestimated Continuum. Nokia N8 had it five years ago, on Symbian without docking station. Just HDMI cable and bluetooth. And? Nokia left Symbian to die, because of Troyan horse - Steven Elop, who decide to go to bloody stupid for that time windows. More than a year, almost two after last flagship Nokia 930. And what? Cheap design will not grow eco system, then no developers to write apps and then bye bye windows 10, which is not ready even. Thats the reason 950 and 950XL to be only in storage, not in shops. Thats why even Acer and other do not start selling windows devices. For such long time, companies like Huawei start making phones from scratch and now they are mature at least in the design. If they made P8 with windows 8.1I'll buy it immediatelly. Ohh. Btw after few days, Huawei is announcing Kirin 950, and maybe we will see new device with it. And Microsoft flagships will left with outdated and overheating 808 / 810. Sorry, if you find my word hard, but i was windows hard user till anouncement of 950/950XL. Now i'll go to buy maybe P8 or something else with eye catching design. Because phones are fashon also and the look and feel is one of most important ones. Thats why we change them ones per year or two.
  • You look for the "look and feel" and I look for "productivity" so neither I can say you made bad choices nor you can say that I made bad choices. I replaced my Galaxy Note 4 with 640 XL because of long lasting battery and better things on the phone that make me 100% sync with my work on my windows 10 computer. Every phone is good and the best phone is the one that fulfills your requirements you like P8 and I like Windows phone that does not make these phones best or worst in the world. But if you want a comparison just compare the voice recognition of any windows phone with any android phone.
  • People that buy phones based on fashion need not post here. Go get your Rose gold iPhone...
  • Thanks for spoiling that movie for me......
  •   The movie is Predestination.  
  • Good article.  I've also been a bit worried about those holding off until the Surface phone comes out as I happen to be in that group, at least currently.  Just recently decided to get a 640 as a stop gap phone until the Surface phone comes out so that I didn't burn my ATT upgrade which I plan to use for the Surface phone.  Now I'm reconsidering this decision and it's effect on the platform.  I know I'm only one user, but I may just burn my upgrade on a 950/XL to help support the platform and then maybe save up each month for an off-contract Surface phone when it comes out.
  • Well written article jason, you are one of the few writer in this site that doesnt blatantly advertise Microsoft products, although i must correct you on one thing, liquid cooling on the 950 isnt actually liquid cooling, apparently its just a heat pipe and its not an innovative feature, its been done before on xperia z2.
  • Nice article Jason. I agree with you wholeheartedly. We need these phones to do well if we are to see advancements in the W10 Mobile scene.
  • Windows 10 Mobile is not the "other half" of the Universal Windows Platform. The other half is Surface, and all touch-enabled PCs. UWP is about combining mouse driven design with touch driven design. Getting it to fit on a phone is a side project. MS won't drop UWP because it is the only way forward for touch-enabled PCs running Windows and no one thinks they are going to drop that market. The phone will continue to get support since it is just a smaller screen target, but it is not nearly as important to MS as Surface or their software for iOS and Android.
  • Reading this article was a pleasure - thanks, and generates some good debate. I am one of these people who will be giving it a miss, and maybe come back later. Sadly for Microsoft, and as a fan, it was actually a very difficult decision to move back to Android after so many years. I have kept my trusty Dual SIM 735 for abroad trips and some experimentation on W10 t osee how it develops. I originally went to Windows Phone via 520, because it was a cheap entry into the WP world and I'm glad to say that since then I've enjoyed a 620, 735, 930 and 1520 during my time with the platform. The original plan was to see if my primary apps would work, such as Co-Pilot sat-nav and a few other things such as Spotfiy, would work how I wanted them to - and they do (To a degree, more on that later). So why move, now that the new hardware has been announced? Well, for me it's not about the hardware, it's the software. Just look at the legions of fans who still run x20 devices, such as the 1020. The hardware on these phones has always been good and perception counts for a lot. If you feel like your older device runs slick on older hardware, that in of itself is a good reason to hang on to the hardware and run it a little longer. Windows 10 is going to be great. It'll be a smooth transition no-doubt from 8.1 to 10 for most devices, but Windows 10 at the moment looks like it's pretty much going offer the same features as 8.1 - and that's not enough for me. Now don't get me wrong, Rome wasn't built in a day and a lot of the work going into Windows 10 mobile is all under the hood. Android at the moment can do all of the things for me that Windows 10 can't. Extensions in the web browser, quality apps (Spotify is so bad on Windows Phone this in of itself was a reason to move), better notifications (Such as OneNote telling me that it's still syncing my books for instance, where on Windows Phone I have no idea whether it's still syncing or not even syncing at all without the app being open on the screen), and a clearer roadmap on things like NFC payments and what will happen with wearables. Windows 10 will get there I'm sure - the problem is when? With things like Edge extensions being delayed, I appreciate MS has a lot on it's plate. By the time WP10 has all the features finished and it feels like it can stand up to Android, some newer hardware will have come out (One hopes!). Take Continuum as another example. I'm a network engineer so the ideal scenario is for me: - Take phone along to client site, along with dock - Plug in to a monitor with k/b and mouse, and must have a LAN port on the dock - Have a desktop experience that I can use x86 apps on (Such as PuTTY) - A full web browser that supports Java, flash and ideally some nice extensions. Unfortunately - Continuum just wont work for me as a productivity tool without having an x86 CPU in the phone. Not to mention that at the moment you can't have a desktop, Windows Snap doesnt work, and in general just putting things on a monitor with k/b and mouse doesn't instantly make it more useful. Sadly, Continuum to me is going to be very much like Windows RT. I think MS need to realise this quickly, learn from RT, and make Continuum on a phone genuinely useful (for £50 anwyay!). I can get all the features I need today from Android, including Windows Phone apps that run better on Android than on WP10, and wait for them to catch up. I am in the priveleged position that I can afford to buy both if I wanted - but I suspect your average consumer will look at WP10 in a month and see what you can't do, and buy elsewhere. For now, I've loved my time with the 930 but it's now time for the Samsung Galaxy S6 Edge to get all the ooh-s and ah-s from my colleagues.  Looking forward to the 960...
  • Everything you say was the truth a Lot of people say they just be waiting til the see the surface phone
  • Excellent article and very true about the expectations that fans have. These new phones are wonderful and it doesn't make sense to hold out for a phone that might not turn out to be what everyone wants. An Intel processor doesn't automatically mean the phone will be awesome.
  • I've already decided to get the 950. I might be dead in a year and can't wait. Life is fragile.
  • Agreed though I'll get the 950 XL if I have the money. It's actually pretty comfortable to hold even though I have small hands.
  • I am getting the 950XL, and I am excited. Who know, may get a Surface Phone next year if that become real. As the article stated, their are always new phones coming out each year. I wouldn't be surprised to see the Surface Phones hit the markets next fall, not next spring. They may announce something, but I wouldn't bet on anything in stores before September. Just like the other manufacturers. The interesting point is money. Microsoft tried to build market share with cheap phones, and the Lumia 520 may have been the best selling Windows Phone ever. But, those people are not likely to switch to a Lumia 950, or a Surface Phone. In other words, we shouldn't expect many sales of the 950. However, that's not the point at this stage in the fight. Microsoft needs to put really great phones into the hands of its real sales force, the Microsoft enthusiast.  There's not a lot of us, but enough to spread the word if the phone is really awesome.  So we shouldn't focus on the 950 sales numbers, they will not match the top phones from the other platforms and will probably look bad in comparison.  Everyone expects it.  The 950's are just needed to stay in the fight.   If the enthusiast has a great phone, with cool features like iris scanning, then we're back to the old fight of "no apps".  Never overcoming that objection has left WP in a bad spot.  To me, none of this matters without Android apps downloaded from the Windows Store to your Windows Phone.  That has to happen.  Project Astoria must be ready very quickly.  I believe it is the only way to save the ecosystem now.  If it does arrive soon, we'll have great phones, with a ton of new apps, riding a wave of positive Microsoft feelings.  It just could work to get Windows Phone to 10%, then you just build from there.
  • Haha this^. It's the 950XL for me though!
  • Yep, 950 for me also.
  • Very true.
  • I will buy a 950XL as soon as Microsoft will take my money. I've waited long enough.
  • me too. i can't wait. specially after playing with one at MS retail store in my home town. its WOW. that's all hv to say.
  • The real question is: When the he'll are these coming out!?
  • I might think of a 950 :) need to get rid of my 930 though...
  • Literally the exact same here...but seeing the specs of the 950....definitely worth the upgrade!
  • Could not agree more. Upgrading my 930 to 950 on launch day :-D
  • Not to get too off topic, but what movie was that? Sounds interesting...
  • The name of the movie is Looper, friend.
  • The name of the movie is predestination
  • I stand corrected. And now I want to see this movie!
  • Don't.
  • Not watching after the spoiler without alert leading this story.
  • Lol.. Exactly!!
  • I watched Predestination.  Didn't think it was good. 
  • Are you kidding??? Predestination is one of the best, most well thought out and intricate movies I've seen in many years! It's in the league of a movie like inception in my opinion
  • And that's why I NEVER take movie advice from anyone professional or not.  Everyone's taste is different when it comes to movies.  :)
  • Go screw yourself ;)
  • Aye, twas a good flick..
  • I was with you, buddy, I thought looper right away.
  • I thought it was "Looper" myself.
  • You mean it wasn't Timecop?! =(
  • I thought it might be the new Terminator where everyone used Lumia's?
  • I thought it was Time Cop with my boy Jean Claude Van Damme!!!
  • Predestination a kind of Indie movie from Australia, I was blown away by the movie. Lots of paradoxes and one of the best acting I have seen in a sci-fi.
  • The movie is a rip-off of Twelve Monkeys.
  • Bravo!
  • Ok fair enough. I will buy a 950.
  • Failure of the Lumias 950/950XL(if happens) will be due to ms not doing proper promotion in all countries. MS really needs to give attention to the Lumia division and make some great looking phones. And for critics, let's say that they exist for the sole purpose of saying"windows phone is doomed".
  • They got some 30 seconds or so floor time when announced..
  • And not to mention 5 secs for 550.
  • Lol
  • Are you kidding? Did you even watch the keynote? There was a long presentation of Continuum on the phones.They may have gotten less screen time than the Surfaces from Panos but not overall.
  • The surface is pianos panos baby. The 950s are the bastard child of Nokia and Microsoft. Hopefully panos will have more of a role in the development of future phones.
  • Yup, Panay should start heading the Lumia line up and then we shall have great looking devices with mind blowing features.
  • 950/950XL have great ""SPECS"" if you just read. 2.5K OLED screen, Gorilla Glass 4, 3300 mAh FAST charging battery with wireless charging, 20 PIX cam with RGB flash, Liquid Cooling, Iris Scanner, MicroSD slot, Removable battery and back cover, 6 and 8 core 64 CPU, 3GB of RAM, Continuum, FULL NFC, Glance,.................and if you guys don't think thats enough, there is something wrong with you people. How many falgship phns you guys can name that has all the same specs as these 950/950XL? FYI, overrated iJUNK phns does NOT have ANY of these specs i just mentioned (except for its overheating CPU, #chipgate). So why no one BoooHooos about those iJUNK phns. that they are NOT getting what they are paying for, with its 4 years old technology used in them, but i hear constant crap about 950/950XL from you people. can you guys READ the """""""SPECS""""""???????
  • I thought chipgate for the iPhone was Samsung vs tsmc chips That affected battery life? Anyways, the specs for the 950 are up there, but nothing impressive. Every high end Android phone since the beginning of this year had those specs. It's the end of 2015, and we don't get 4GB of RAM. The competitor to the 950 is going to be the galaxy S7, since they will both likely be released very soon. The rumored specs on that is a far superior processor, 6GBRAM, possibly better camera, and probably some other features that easily make the 950 specs outdated. All we wanted was something really outstanding, yet what we get is a "basic" high end. Plus, the unfinished OS and delayed launch is really getting on people's nerves. I'm still getting it, but I'm getting pretty impatient.
  • apple sucks, You are awesome ☺
  • They did have the extensive demo of Continuum so it was not that bad.  
  • We don't even have any information on whether or not these phones will be released here yet. Despite the fact that we are always in the first round to launch Surface (after US of course).
  • I laughed so hard when Panos tried talk about the phones having a "camera button" as if it was a huge break through... He waited for applause and nothing came lol typical..
  • Thats only because the phone's specs were so well leaked that everyone knew what to expect. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • You laughed so hard about that? I guess you just have a low standard in humor then :)
  • Obviously, he didn't use Windows phone before.
  • I think until you actually have a dedicated camera button, you have no idea how you'll ever stand having a phone without one. I will never own a phone without one.
  • Until they don't make em with buttons anymore...
  • Exactly..... Poor Marketing will kill these devices. As usual....
  • Great article with some fantastic points. I had considered waiting for another device next year but my 920's sim tray has stopped functioning so I will indeed be picking up a 950XL.
  • whoa. what a bummer of a read that was.
  • Yep. Drove me to drinkin...
  • Reasons ppl don't buy Windows phone
    Lack of apps obviously
    And avg consumer cannot understand WP OS as their so familar with dead icons android UI.
  • What? Cannot understand the o/s? It is ridiculously easy to pick up and use. If anything ios and android is more confusing. Especially to the older generation who are retired or retiring. I've seen first hand how much they fidget to accomplish a simple task. On windows phone they can just pin the contacts to the start screen and scroll down. The pictures is what really helps, the clear typography makes navigation much easier. There is no constant side scrolling between home screens and widgets or jumping in and out off apps just to check what was received.
  • Even Nadella himself said in an internal email that WP is a confusing OS with a weird user interface. Why do you think Microsoft moved away completely from all metro design guide lines? Because Nadella just hates it. He also doesn't like live tiles hence the change to make them more like normal Android+iOS icons. I think Daniel even reported Nadella's hate against the WP UI in a comment here once.  
  • Show me a link to that internal email...otherwise this is just FUD
  • Yes I'd love to see a copy of that email as well.
  • My dad just needed me to set alarms for his medications on his android phone because after 2 years he still cannot figure it out! I am a pretty tech-savvy person and even I had to Bing it to figure out how. I will never understand why people thing Android is simple or user friendly !
  • Really lol. That's terrible...
    Seriously how hard is it to go to Clock and set an alarm there.
    Or better yet use Google now to set one for you. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • I agree.I always recommend WP for new smartphone users who are intimidated by smartphones. WP is the easiest to pick up and easiest to put just exactly what you use up front and hide everything else.
  • I agree. With this "bridge" apps have to become available fast. I have been a Windows fan boy since the Samsung Blackjack. However, I am close to moving on when it's time for a new phone if the apps aren't there. I hope they are!
  • I have provided feedback to ms about first launch providing a tutorial on using the start screen. Something like this would definitely help since it's so different than the other ones. Although those who have it on desktop are likely to catch on quicker.
  • Advertising can make poor products sell like hotcakes. Advertising can make great products sell like hotcakes. MS don't advertise.
  • Microsoft has started doing that with the surface now. But Lumia is still Microsoft knows it wont get that much hype like the iPhone bcoz it still lack regular app updates. So they aren't betting more on windows phone but assuming of windows 10 mobile will bring the change.
  • Exactly...
  • I prefer subliminal messages myself...heeheehee >=]~)
  • Quick correction: Xperia Z5 has liquid cooling IIRC, and it is already on the market!
  • While we're on corrections, isn't it just the 950 XL, and not 950, that has liquid cooling?  
  • +1
  • I think if you reread the article you will notice that he didn't say that the 950s were the only phone with liquid cooling. He was just stating that in comparison to the industry leaders (iPhone 6d and Galaxy Note 5) it has better specs and it will be at least a year before those 2 will be able to add it since they just released the phone and liquid cooling isn't included in their specs.
  • WHAT???????? IJUNK 6 has better specs than Lumia 950XL????????????????????????????????????? who said that????? I would like to know 1 spec that is better on iJUNK, than 950XL (beside apps, since that s not SPECS). whoever you are. you must not know what 950XL offers. FYI, in every category 950XL is about 4 years ahead of iJUNK6+/6S+ overrated garbage toy. PLEASE NAME 1 spec. just 1 that is better than ANY flagship phn used on iJUNK phn. everything iJUNK has, other brand used 4years ago. its funny to see anyone to think iJUNK has better specs than 950XL. LMAO. biggest joke ever.
  • There's no bigger hater of Apple or Google than me.  But you can't seriously believe that the 950 or 950XL offer anything all the compelling compared to their competition.  Every single "advantage" you might champion with the new Lumias is arguable.  There's nothing so truly standout that most consumers would even consider dropping their iGarbage or Andribble for. 
  • App ecosystem done and done
    I know no one should reply to the trolls ahem
    But the ios app ecosystem is far superior Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • If I am not wrong Z5 just employs heat pipes unlike 950 which employs liquid cooling. This is just my interpretation after reading about in websites.
  • No it has a standard heat pipe. 950xl has a heat pipe with a capillary system that transfers tiny amount of liquid. Still just a heat pipe but more advanced.
  • Z5 doesn't have liquid cooling.
  • Sad but true
  • The name of the movie is predestination if you were wondering
  • Spoilers! Now I can't watch that movie
  • As always, great article. I am in full agreement with everything you wrote. This is why I will upgrade my phones as soon as the 950 series is out. It will be on us, the users, to carry Windows 10 Mobile to success.
    I for once will stick to Windows 10 Mobile and not skip a phone. Windows 10 on phones can be a tremendous success, but only if we let it.
  • Agree with all however
    One thing to add...
    Only reason im not getting one if these Lumia's is because I cant get it through my carrier. I think thats MAJOR for a lot of folks
  • Save up? On a carrier plan you end up paying alot more for the phone by the time you finish that contract. It is infact ridiculous cheaper to buy sim free, plus you don't have the hassle or fee to pay for the unlock code. Some carriers charge even after the contract is finished for the unlock code.
  • T-Mobile charges you a flat rate price, they don't charge extra because you are making payments.
  • I agree completely that our response to these phones could be a problem. I say that as one of the people who is not crazy about the looks of the phones. I have been wanting a Surface phone for a couple years now. In spite of all of that, I will be getting an XL if they ever come out. They need to release these things already. I still don't understand why they can't release high end phones and then update them to the newest OS when it releases. No other company does this, it was an excuse made up specifically for MS. I also think availability and the lack of carriers will be a problem as well. I hope the Surface Phone is sooner than a year from now as I believe that's what will get them the attention they need. Their surface line of products is becoming pretty formidable and respected and the next logical release is a phone. Anyway, anxiously and impatiently waiting, as always with MS.
  • Satya, knew 12 to 15 months ago what we expected as fans,, and many of us wanted phone that would stand up against the iPhone, galaxies, xperia z series, and the note, not only spec wise, bit also design wise; so the burden is not on the consumer alone, but the OEM company has to listen to what consumers and society is saying as a whole. People have been flocking to iPhones and galaxies For years now because of design..... Case and point, the iPhone has never really had the greatest display or right size, but it nails design and Samsung saw this and look what they've done. On the other hand, people reject Lumia because they look just like any other cheap plastic phone no matter what the internal specs are and do you really think the average consumer local or abroad wants to shell out an additional $50 dollars to make their phone look like the competition does right out of the box?. Microsoft has made some poor decisions when it comes to WP at best, so if Joe B. doesn't return, I wouldn't be surprised at all! That's where Panos excels, he's recognized that society as a whole cares about external aesthetics...... Nokia and the previous Microsoft teams ignored this and is trying to force average looking phones with good internal specs on consumers..... They clearly aren't falling for it. I've been on this bandwagon for five years and I expected more design wise. I don't buy something don't like. I'm holding on to my 1520 that runs greater on WM10 build 10581.
  • 100% agree, was gonna write the same so thanks for saving me time!
    However, I have a 1520 too, and even though I hesitated, and kinda still do, I will probably get the 950xl not only to support the platform, but also because WM10 is actually in my opinion the best OS, the most intuitive, the least boring. The only reason I would've switched to iphone is design and apps.
  • The only way I'll upgrade is via a two contact as I honestly don't think this phone is worth me shelling out $600+ dollars as much as I hate contracts. What's even worse is that I don't think at will carry the 950XL, do it won't be available on a two year contract which means if I want it, I'll have to pay full price. If Satya really ways WP to succeed, he will have to figure out some financing options for users who act to purchase this phone directly from their store yet don't want to shell out $600 for this phone that doesn't compete design wise to the competition.
  • Yeah if I get it, it will be through at&t too. So I hope it's available there so I can use the Next payment program. (12 months of payments to be able to exchange the phone after those months, or you get to keep it if you pay 18 months)
  • I don't know about you but I look at Lumia 950s and wanna put them in my pants... U____________U
  • I don't know about phones that MS couldn't update. I know that ATT won't update my 920 to 8.1.2 because they don't want to put the time in to verify the update for the 920, but that has nothing to do with MS updating the phone. To me it's very easy to understand. ATT has the power over MS and they exploit it. But in ATT's defense, they are consistent with not updating phones that have a low volume of users on their network, so there's nothing new there.
  • Doesn't being in the insider program circumvent this issue? Im not sure if you are, or if it works. But if I was in your case, being in the insider program would solve my problem.
  • I think the bigger issue is not having a launch date when announced, and only one of them absolutely confirmed on only one carrier in the US, with only a coming Soon , but no actual release date. As Daniel Rubino pointed out it was obvious they were less than thrilled to be announcing them. The truth is these will most likely be the last Lumia's, to be replaced by Surface phones next year. So for those that choose to wait another year or so for the surface phone, don't complain about lack of a flagship. There finally two. But as with any technology they will be obsolete almost as soon as they are released.
  • I really didn't get the impression at all that they were "less than thrilled" to announce them. Of course, the fact that Panos personally was more thrilled to show off the Surfaces should not be a surprise to anyone. Funny how that turned to "MS didn't like presenting them" in people's perception.
  • Yeah, same. I have no idea where people are getting this "less than thrilled" idea from. I watched the keynote in real-time. They spent a lot of time talking about these devices and Continuum. They only device they seemingly fast-forwarded through was the Lumia 550.
  • I guess people didn't watch the presentation. They spent decent amount of time on Lumia and Continuum.
  • "Are the Lumia 950 and 950 XL victims of the Surface's success?" Besides the clumsy grammar, this is what's known as a non sequitur. Between stories like this and the endless "Hands on with Windows 10 build 1204039888900.7" stories that populate the WC home page every day, I'm guessing there's not much going on in the world of Windows. Not trying to be a troll here, although I probably seem like one. But jeesh, if there's nothing to write about, then don't.
  • Its an opinion piece bruh. You are indeed trolling
  • Thank you, especially the article the other day about how to get your SP4 to worry with your existing surface dock bought with the SP3. need flash, I simply docked it in and closed it and it worked without an adaptor.
  • There's more to write about than ever. I found it to be a very good piece as with most of Jason's editorials. It makes some extremely valid points that I've also made myself.
  • Writing about Microsoft every day isn't an easy job, there's simply not a lot going on sometimes. No need to trash the site with your comments.
  • Excellent, excellent, excellent. You are absolutely right, if we are not ready to support the new Windows phones then we deserve what we get (cancellation of the whole thing). I am champing at the bit, waiting to pre-order my 950xl here in Canada.
  • I think the whole premise of "ambivalence", "decided to pass", "cold shoulder" etc. is pretty ridiculous for a product that is not only unavailable  in general but also unavailable for preorder from most places including ATT in the US.
  • You can pre-order it direct from Microsoft. Have you forgotten the crap these moronic carriers have pulled with windows phone????
  • Not a lot of people want or can afford to pay for them with the unlocked price.
  • agreed
  • I don't think that's entirely true, everyone on T-MOBILE pays full price for their phones, so it's really no different. The only difference is you can add you phone payments to bill, but your still paying full price. Unless you upgrade to a newer phone a year down the road.  I don't think the price is out of hand.  The premium phones have all been priced in the  600+ range - going back two+ years.  That fact that the 950 is below $600 iMO is a good thing. 
  • I haven't forgotten anything, I'm saying people are not writing it off before it is even out, (except here)
  • Well, I'm turning a cold shoulder to it.  I'm keeping my 1020 with Windows Phone 8.1.
  • I'm after the Lumia 950. The continuum concept looks cool and makes me want to buy into it (Discord wherever I am and able to blow to big screen as required? Sign me up! They've said a Windows Phone app is in the works.) But I would like an octocore processor but the XL would be too big for me.
  • The XL is apparently a lot smaller and lighter than people seem to think.
  • L950XL is the smallest phablet among all the 5.7" phones, including the 5.5" iPhone 6S Plus.  However, L950 can fake a phablet by scale down the text and apps size thru settings.  You in fact have a 5.2" XL.
  • Me, and my company will be upgrading from Lumia 830 to the Lumia 950...probably thru AT&T..but might also go direct..will decide when avail.....
  • If a third party made a magnesium back plate with a kickstand that might make me consider this.
  • Third party with magnesium/metal back would already be pretty cool, even without the kickstand. However, many people seem to think that it would block the Qi charging capabilities
  • You aren't getting a kickstand on a phone. It would be pretty dumb nowadays.
  • idk, I miss my HTC HD7 with it's built in kickstand... =)
  • Excellent piece! We all need to go out and purchase one of the new flagship phones (whenever the heck its released), to ensure that our beloved platform stay afloat so that we all can eventually see that surface phone in the future. If some of us sit this one out and wait for something else Down the line, that product may not come, because we didn't support our platform in the first place.
  • If it really WAS a flagship and didn't have stupid Windows 10 on it, I'd be inclined to agree.  I'm not buying an also-ran device just to rescue Microsoft's bacon.
  • I dk what are you talking about. I'm buying a 950 @asap!b
  • Nice article
    They have to promote continuum more and more and spread it around so people would actually buy those phones that supports it
    btw , the Lumia 950xl ONLY has liquid cooling , the 950 doesnt
  • Features that need to be emphasized in ads: - Continuum like you said
    - Interchangeable backs. Can be a good selling point if marketed properly. For example, how you can switch your phone looks depending on your clothing and mood, unlike the competition
    - Best camera out there
    - Universal Apps in general, regardless of the continuum dock
  • It's NOT the best camera out there.
  • I'm WAITING to buuy the freakkin 9950XL......Wen in India!!
  • I'm not sure that the 950 is so much a victim of the Surface success as it is a victim of RT's failure. Many are hesitant to go with the 950 not just because a better phone will come out later, but because of concern that Continuum won't realm be a serious feature unless used on an x86 device.
  • "This innovation is a first for any mobile phone." No, it's not. Heat pipes aren't a novelty at all. Sony's Z5 series presented on the 2nd September also use a dual heat-pipe system. "liquid cooling" is just a fancy marketing name. The rest of the article just reads like a desperate marketing letter from Microsoft trying to convince the few remaining WP fans to buy phones that didn't enthral them. Sorry. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Heat pipes =/= liquid cooling, Heat pipes or Thermal disspation channels are a type of heat exchangers. they can use any fluid (liquid or gas), but the most common one is air(gas), which is what Sony is probably using, unless they would have stated otherwise. Let's be honest, Sony PR team would have used this as a major feature in the Xperia Z5( specially now considering, they r doing much much worse than Ms, they r afloat only because of Playstation and more importantly after the Z3+/Z4 overheating fiasco) if not in the Xperia Z2. Or they would have shunned Microsoft claiming to be the first using liquid cooling in a phone. Until now, no official statement from Sony claiming that they use liquid cooling in xperia phones. Well, apparently u r doing a better job for promoting sony phones than Sony marketing team. Microsoft's innovation is to imploy a liquid cooled heat exchanger in a phone. It's not like I am buying any of the lumia 950 due right away ( haven't decided yet, there are really nice phones this season from most major manufacturers excluding HTC. And I do like the xperia z5 trio. but I may also go for startup companies phones like OnePlus X or WileyFox Storm), but I think  this is one of the best if not the best Lumia 950 duo features and innovations (much more than Continuum) that is going to shape the industry, just like how OIS in the lumia 920 did. At the end of the day, u want a usuable phone much more than a continuum powered one, not something that burns a hole in ur pocket (literally).
  • Yes tear down showed heat pipe but with tiny capillaries with a drop of liquid. So while it's a heat pipe the marketing isn't exactly wrong.
  • You seem to be under the impression Sony has a decent PR team. I'm sad to tell you that isn't the case. AT ALL. Sony's PR teams are a disaster, their entire marketing a mess. They manage to screw up worst than Microsoft in that area and that's saying something.
    The cooling system on their Z5 is exactly the same as the one on these Lumias. There's no liquid in any of them as teardowns already showed. Microsoft was smarter in talking about the cooling system because of the Snaptoaster 810's horrible reputation. Sony decided that wasn't worth their time even after the Z3+ having been panned because of overheating problems. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • Problem with Sony and Microsoft. Great efforts but useless marketing. And on the other side apple makes less efforts and more fanboy marketing.
  • Take your hatred elsewhere for once. Sony's Z5 doesn't have liquid cooling and that's a fact.
  • It has as much liquid cooling as these Lumias. And that's a fact. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • "The next best thing", what you berate people for in the beginning of the article, is exactly what you are pro-claiming in the second half of your article. Funny
  • Well said Jason, well said. Unfortunately most people think short term and not long term. There have been decisions made by Microsoft, which understandably have made alot of people more than just uncomfortable with Microsoft and where they (Ms) stand with windows phone. The axe they took to the windows phone division prior to the launch of these phones was the last straw for many. I'm hoping that Microsoft also releases the dual sim models in the UK. As I personally want one and I know for a fact I can sell dozens of these. Although there is not much one can do to get people to stay on windows phone, which brings me back to Microsoft and their platform agnostic approach. That approach will always cannibalise phone sales. As people can benefit from the Microsoft Ecosystem and enjoy the other benefits they have with ios and android. Not to mention majority of the high end smartphone owners are heavily entrenched in ios or android. Lastly a phone with sleek lines will be uncomfortable to hold for long periods. I for one don't see the purpose of a x86/x64 soc on a phone. You're better off with a tablet and a dock. Sure it's convenient to have everything in one place, but on the flipside you're going to a lot more than just photos and contacts if you lose your phone or it's stolen.
  • I agree with this article 110%. I'm going to do whatever it takes to get me a L950XL. Hopefully ATT wakes up or Tmo at least
  • well i plan to get the 950 and then get the surface phone so i guess they will sell some.
  • I was really looking forward to the new lumia's but I have decided to leave this one out. I wouldn't use continuum and I don't think the shape/design of hardware was very eye catching at all. The insides and everything else is great. I've decided to go with new blackberry priv it looks real stylish with good software as well.
  • Exactly my situation. I don't care about or want to use my phone as a computer. And the phones look super cheap I would be embarrassed to pull them out anywhere.
  • is your opinion based on pictures or have you visited a store and seen the phones?  
  • Hi there Donald. To be very honest I'm a huge windows fan. I have had all the surface pros and all the lumia's since Nokia Lumia800.
    The best lumia was the 920. Cut and design was so good and it looked good on the table with everyone else's apple and Sam. I guess I was really wanting something sleek and attractive. After the 930 which I nearly didn't get I said to myself the next one needs to be bloody good. I found the 930 just ok. But it worked really well.
    After watching the presentation I thought ok this is good. Then I watched it again and again only this time with out halo and the surface/book . The band.
    Then I sorta looked at pictures and hands on and had it sorted in my head I like the 950 reg. It was slightly different with the camera on back.
    Again it was sort of a 930 feeling, should I, if I do it will be to the next one comes out.
    Then I seen the blackberry priv and holy jeez on a motor back that looks so good.
    The Priv shouted at me, here big boy I belong in your hand.
    Ok it's android but it's got a lot of blackberry Passport on board. And say what you want but it's a dam work horse.
    It's a dam goodlooking workhorse at that. It's just me.
    I will always love windows but microsoft have been a bit lazy here with the 950.
    They have had plenty of time to slap my face with a fantastic device and it didn't happen.
    I'm unhappy with the shape, cut,design.
    But a lot of people will like it. The eye scanner is amazballs but it's not enough to keep me this time.
    However I will be watching for the next flagship and it better be a bloody surface phone to look good sitting at my pro.
    So yes it's based on what I've seen. But I'm one of them people that see something and boom, I know.
    So I'm gone I'm just taking a break for a better phone for me for a while.
    I'm a phone fanatic.
    People keep me going. ( he's got more phones than the CPW. )
    So I know what I want.
    Oh yes another pet hate is the speaker is on the back again. (Tell me Why ,why, why. Arrrrrgggghhhhhhhh.
    Ok I'm away
  • Thank you for your response. I have owned an two HTC android phones and a first generatio Moto X. The Moto X was probably the more comfortable phone I have had. I decided to explore the Windows Phone experience to see what they were like and got a Lumia 830. There are things I like and things I dislike. What the phone looks like is not high on my list but - how it works, how nice the screen looks, durability, and how well I like the use are all above what it looks like. I cannot tell you how many times I have dropped the Lumia and it only has a few scuffs on it. My HTC would not have survived and I put the Moto X in a case. The Lumia have been skinless. I will look at the new Lumias and see it it is an upgrade to my 830 which still has a lot of life in it. The Windows Hello, Hey Cortana and the Camera seems like a big improvement and I will upgrade to Window 10 when it is available so the experience is the same. I am unsure those improvements will push me in that direction but it may. Does the priv offer those features or is it just a prettier package? thanks for the response - I do appreciate learning how others see things. a silly thing I liked about the 830 was the colorful back... It came with two and I am now using the black (the green oen got loose - not a pluse for the 830) and I actually like the looks as well. It wont win any fashion contests but that is fine with me
  • BTW - when you say Surface Phone... what does that mean to you? I am not sure I would trade wireless charging for a metal body. also unsure I would use a first generation Intel phone if that is what you mean  
  • I was there in New York on that Tuesday they gave me a tour of the phones I could play with them a little. I was honestly blown away by the 950XL camera. But the industrial design is laughable, the form, the materials. (The food was fantastic though, they know how to throw a party.)
  • Thank you for the response. what it looks like may be on my list but it is a small consideration in what I want in a phone. As I said above, the Camera, Windows Hello, Hey Cortana and integration with my SP3 are what has me excited.... Now if MS gives me someway - anyway to import my .KML from Google Maps into MS Maps ecosystem will make me a happier camper  
  • And yet the WP carrier strategy is nonexistent.
  • No strategy. They either want it or they don't.
  • I dont think the sales of this Lumia will really affect the decision to launch Surface phone or not. MS is already investing in Continuum and they will still need a hero device to show partners what Windows is capable of. Surface Phone is about Windows 10 more than it is about phones.
  • Agreed. I think MS will come out with that phone regardless of what happens. The same way the first Surface was a failure but Microsoft kept coming out with improved ones until it worked out
  • The difference being that the success of the OS wasn't reliant on the success of the devices, as is the case with the new Lumia's.
  • I agree, I think they'll be fairly paitient and put out their 100% original creation, when the time comes. I love the look of these new phones, and am sorely tempted by them. I hope they sell well and give some momentum to the platform. I don't think their the Lumia success is tied to weather we'll be getting a "surface phone."
  • I, for one, am looking to Microsoft to provide a feature-rich Windows 10 Mobile OS *at launch*. If tried, true, necessary features are overlooked --e.g. S/MIME encryption -- in favor of useless frills & flair -- e.g. dark-theme email -- then I won't be dropping my hard-earned money on either device. Honestly, I read through all the fit 'n finish commentary and am left whispering "WTF" to myself... I guess I'm the only one whose employer demands email encryption...? In 2015...? I doubt it.
  • You can use s/mime on Wp8.x and that obviously won't be missed out at all. Otherwise that would be a ridiculous oversight.
  • I agree, @TechFreak1! I use it *all the time* on WP8.1, but so far the feature remains notably missing... And, based on the Windows 10 "upgrade" for my Surface, I don't have a lot of faith it's coming at release to the Mobile platform. (Don't get me started on Windows 10... ;)
  • Hear hear! Microsoft will harvest what it sows. For now Windows 10 mobile is barely equal to windows phone 8.1 and this fact would be the real reason for me to wait it out. My 1520 on windows phone is almost 2 years old and the 950 doesn't bring anything really essential to the table to warrant a replacement of my 1520. Add the extra love MS is giving to ios and android products and voila, I'll wait to see whether sticking with windows mobile is the right thing to do.
  • Continuum alone is more than extra. There's no way any current windows phone is in the league of the 950/950 XL
  • @Kaymd, at this point in time, I feel Continuum is more of a gimmick than a truly useful feature. I'd not make my decision based upon Continuum...
  • One of the builds of mail had s/mine but was removed after. My guess is too buggy.
  • I would totally buy a 950 if I had the money. That's the only reason why I'm not buying one. I cry myself asleep every night because of that.
  • Its not that the 950 Lumia devices are dissapointing, and too expensive for most potential buyers, its more that Windows 10 mobile is totally uninspiring and weak in any significant new features to entice any Android or Apple users.
    Microsoft and the Windows Phone team have simply given up on the original vision of WP7
    Losing the Nokia branding, may not mean much to Americans, but its has now resulted in faltering sales in the once popular European market.
  • This is ultimately what is holding me back. I love the hardware but I just don't see anything special in Windows 10 Mobile. Where is the incentive to upgrade?
  • At least Apple has the wits to show off the graphical capabilities of their new hw every year by letting a third party show an exclusive game.
  • So,  wife will be getting the 950 on ATT Next Plan 12M and will be ready to upgrade next year.  I will get the unlocked 950XL from Microf dsoft direct because of dualsim support and will upgrade again next year.  For anyone on the Next plan this is not a real issue, the real problem is no 950XL on ATT at this time.  
  • My problem with the phones is not that they are not 'Surface' phones. It is just the overall design. Don't get me wrong: I am not one of those folks who thinks polycarbonate is not "premium" enough for a smartphone - heck I was looking forward to a well-designed polycarbonate offering. My issue is that there are a lot of things, admittedly small things that feel "off" about these designs. The speaker grills, the placement of the camera module, the ring on the 950 which feels like it is there just to differentiate it from 550, and so on and so forth. Heck, it almost feels like Microsoft purposefully underdesigned these phones, for whatever reason. I will still probably pick up one of those, though, mostly for the OS. ( and the cameras :) )
  • That's the whole thing in a nutshell. People like myself are definitely not going to flock to buy these phones, irregardless of needing to, just to motivate Microsoft to build and release a Surface phone with optimized software that should have been the priority, instead of another wait and see if these 2 phones will sell. Until Microsoft pulls their heads out of where ever they have them and do what they should have with McClaren 2years ago and build a worthy enough flagship Surface phone, fire their lameassed marketing staff for the phone division, and either fix the carrier issues of not carrying their phones, then Microsoft phones are going nowhere. The internals of the phones are okay for the beginning of 2015 but not with 2016 in 2 months and if they don't mirror what the entire Surface lines exterior look like they are living in the past and doomed. Personally waiting till now to release these phones and not having the software optimized just shows me they aren't really serious about these phones and while WP fans are way over due a worthy flagship phone these aren't going to to sell enough to please Microsoft..... So yes they are shooting themselves in the foot by not releasing a Surface phone Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • The problem for many is the word 'Microsoft' instead of Nokia Branding. Seriously, Nokia knew more about good design, and Europeans and worldwide markets have more trust in Nokia than Microsoft.
    Only an idiot would think Intel based phones will offer any decent mobile performance. Intel are no where close enough to ARM in this market. So called Intel based Surface phones are just a faint illusion for Windows fan boys.
  • Same people designed these...
  • I have an aging 920 with failing battery capacity. I dislike Android and iOS. I'm buying a 950 for lack of any better options. Maybe I'll sell and buy a Surface Phone when the hardware and software are ready to make it viable. As long as Windows phones are made, I'll be a customer. My app needs are minimal and I really like the OS.
  • I agree with you in disliking those os-es but at least with android you have other options like cyanogenmod which is amazing on Lollipop and with MS selling a lumia 950 in the UK for £449 which by the time of a possible Surface phone your new lumia will be unsoldable. 
  • The 950 should've been unveiled at a separate event when they could paint a clearer picture on its availability. If Surface really is cannibalizing Lumia it's because they began generating sales buzz for a product that's not yet for sale. They shouldn't have showcased it beside a bunch of things that went up for sale after the event. At this rate by the time it does trickle out into the market the only people that will remember/care are enthusiasts who were going to buy one regardless.
  • After hanging onto my Lumia 720 for a long time and waiting for the 950, I ultimately abandoned Lumia for an iPhone 6s last month. Why? Because the mobile OS still isn't ready and I got sick of being told "soon", only to eventually be disappointed. There's only so long people can keep waiting for a day that never comes. 
  • A month was just too much time aye.
  • The primary message of Windows 10 is unification and universal apps, but real unification is ages away, and Microsoft can't even keep its own apps updated - at least on its own platform. In a month, Microsoft will tell us "soon" again. It should be their Lumia slogan. One day, if and when Microsoft is finally ready, I'll jump back in. But for now, I'll use an OS that's ready and works right now.     
  • I get you, unfortunate but true.
  • MS needs to promote the hell out of WP to Surfacebook and SP4 buyers who would probably be most intrigued by the platform--even if that means big discounts as part of bundles and other promos. Along the same lines, they need to promote these like crazy to enterprise and business clients on the notion that it already ties in to the Windows platform their IT departments have in place. Right now, it shouldn't be about profits or revenues--just the number of units sold. If MS can sell 15-20 million in Q1, that would build a lot of momentum, along with the growth of 100m+ W10 users, and attract OEMs
  • A big part of the failure is not having a proper flagship in close to 2 years. Still not having a flagship release since the Nokia acquisition cannot be helping matters. I will still get the 950 though.
  • Fantastic write up! I enjoy these greatly. Its important to stay focused on the overall picture. Funny how Apple/Android fans don't seem to hold off any bit, like you read on a lot of windows phone fans comments, yet they just as well know something better is coming next year. You said it best! Great work..
  • For me it's not the promise of a Surface Phone that will stop me from buying these devices, it's the fact that the design is uninspired. The 950XL is ok, but is far too big for me. The 950 is a better size but so plain, and that camera ring is gaudy and disgusting. No colour variants for either phone and a move away from the polycarbonate unibody design line from 800/900,920/1020/1520 really doesn't help.
  • You can replace the back plates....
  • A phone's design is more than just the back plates
  • I agree 100%. Its been too long a wait for a good windows phone. The specs for the 950 are excellent. I would say a notch hgher of competitors. But i f MS wants to boost their market share it has to be done with a good marketing campaign and an attractive entry price. My opinion is that $549 is still too expensive for people to change over from Apple IOS or Android. Only hard core WP fans will end up getting these new phones.
  • For that specs if you going to sell it cheap, its going to look cheap and thus wont sell.
  • Can I buy it unlocked and bring it to any carrier? No? Pass. Too bad too, I WAS going to buy their next flagship, but it also took too long and costs too much. The 950 should have come out a year ago. Sorry MS missed the boat.
  • The xperia Z2 had/ has heatpipes too.     I'm personally a bit tired of "OMG WHAT A FIRST LIQUID COOLING IN A PHONE" 
  • Oh yeah I almost forgot W10 on phones is horrendous. They should really try to finish one phone OS before putting out the next one. WP8 is a buggy mess, why would I move to the next version if they can't get the current one right?
  • Does anyone else think they should make a dock for continuum instead of a box? I think it would be better to slap your phone into a dock then plug it up to a box
  • How can we call the 950 series a victim when it hasn't even been released yet?
  • Great article, but missing the OS side. I loved WP7.  I liked WP8.  I despise WM10.  Ugly, inconsistent, and brings nothing special to the table.  I just ditched my Lumia and bough an Android phone.  If I have to put up with ugly, I may as well have all the apps and features I need!  (And after all these years I have zero confidence in MS delivering anything, they just forver hit reset.)
  • I personally think WM10 is the best looking OS by far. iPhone is the most boring with it's simple row of icons and no options whatsoever of customization. Android is the least intuitive and not that good looking in my opinion either.
    However, I agree that the lack of apps is a huge deal breaker and what would make me hesitate and want to switch to something else
  • Indeed. WP8 was a step back in UX design but had some new features that were attractive. But this thing they are doing now has minimal value. And I don't see people connecting their phones to the many displays and keyboards everybody has laying around the house...
  • Great article, i would have waited for the surface phone if it would launch around Q1/Q2 2016 But it will probable take much longer so I'll soon be a 950 XL owner
  • I love Lumia and of course MS Windows platform. For me its not a big matter that which and what is coming...... It's surface or Lumia phone........ For me its a good and big (well)come of MS Windows in Smartphone, PC's and OS MARKET. I am with them forever and always love them.
  • Allowing developers to keep 100% of Store-generated revenue for the period of at least one year would lead to many new apps appearing.  Slightly more affordable prices (950 for $399) on cutting-edge hardware would increase sales.  These would combine to form a positive feedback loop - forget the chicken or egg argument, have BOTH.
  • Get the 950xl stop the bullshit and do like apple fans do get the next device as soon as it drops. We are the reason windows phone doesn't do well. We are too busy bitching and Penn pinching instead of just diving in like the rest of them. If people saw that they would follow. But since windows fans themselves bitch and moan other people stay with the bullshit also ran tech of yesterday when phones like the 1520 had what everyone is going gaga over now. But for windows fans it may have missed one thing and decided to opt out. Apple fans don't do that, since they don't know what they have and what they are missing they are happy with the incremental improvements every 6months and shell out top dollar for shit we started using 3-4 years ago. So windows fans, stop being assholes. Get the new shit, and the next shit, the only way to win in the game is to play. And of you are constantly on the fucking sidelines bitching, guess what the other team wins by default.
  • Yeah lets all agree WM10 is shit.
  • Well, one of the reasons we bitch more than iphone and android users is that we have more to bitch about.
    Also, swearing, calling people assholes, and saying fuck does not make you look cool. It makes you look like a kid who ia not capable of having a regular conversation with well-thought-out arguments
  • Yeah, drink a bunch of Kool-Aid. Dont' consider quality, price, or availability. You're saying it's the consumer's fault that Microsoft: --Didn't put out McLaren --Didn't put the 930 on AT&T --Hasn't given us a release date for the 950 and 950 XL --Isn't putting the XL on ANY U.S. carrier, and appears to be putting the 950 on just one How can you say it's on the consumers to mindlessly waste money on new phones when Microsoft can't bother to do the same by giving us flagship devices in a timely manner (or, for the past 18 months, AT ALL)? We shouldn't expect to get no hardware, get little in the way of major app support, get inferior software support (to Android and iOS) by MS itself, AND be blindly ignorant to the matter and keep paying for the abuse.
  • Buy doesn't that make us humans with our own rational thinking than a bunch of iSheeps.
  • My problem with the phones is that I just bought an HTC One M8 earlier this year. I wanted the Icon, but it was already nowhere to be found, and the M8 was the best Windows phone available at the time. Now, sic months later, I'm supposed to upgrade again? I'd love to, really, but for practical proses I should wait until next year. Anyway, it's all about the carriers. We, the WP faithful, might go to a Microsoft store or order it on their website, but Jane Consumer will be buying her next phone from Verizon,AT&T, or T-Mobile. If they don't have these on the shelf (and that means in the store, not on the website!) then there phones will flounder just like other WP efforts before.
  • Well I plan on buying the cheaper 950 and flipping it whenever the Surface Phone finally gets here. To me it makes more sense to wait for the Surface Phone with a 950 in hand than wait with any pre-950 phone that came before the flagship drought. It's not like I'm going to be unhappy with the phone that checks every box on the list and gives me access to a killer camera. But that's just me.
  • well said!
  • I have a 920 and a 930 the latter near the end of its contract and i will be getting a 950XL because its a good looking phone with great features. I've been on windows phones since the htc Mozart and love them and every upgrade gets better and better! windows phone has every app i need or want there is'nt an app i've missed or wished was on WP. If i'm looking for something Cortana can help me find it! If i'm lost Here Maps can get me where i want to go! i can call or text people on the go and not have to take my hands off the wheel in can get reminders to get milk etc when i go places. when i get there i have an awsome camera to take photos with seriously what more do you need?. 
  • Jason, how can you say Windows fans have given the Lumia devices the cold shoulder? They aren't even up for sale yet. I do have a 950XL on pre-order, but you can't go by those numbers.
  • For me it's a matter of carrier support. They are launching these phones unlocked with carriers only now signing up to carry it. Why would you not have this taken care of? To make matters worse there had been no direct answer as to whether these phones will work on Verizon's network, although the story of Verizon blocking the phone from their network altogether is a close replacement to this (I am on Verizon btw) and there is little for me to look forward to. I WANT an XL, unless I am mistaken I don't see it as available to me.
  • Completely agree with the article. You've put my thoughts in text. Of course we'll wait and see. Part of msft marketing should go to actually point that "you must buy first so we'll see better things".
  • Am I the only one who doesn't want an Intel phone? Why? Atom is not as power efficient as ARM, x86 programs aren't designed to run on phones and if I want a PC I want one with the hardware developers make programs for: i5 with 8+ Gigs of RAM as minimum and I know I won't find that on a phone unless it is a 10 inch "phone"
  • It's not just you. I'm not going to sit here and play the "Well, *next* year's phone will be so much more awesomer than this year's phone" game, because that is always the case. Pick a phone, lock in on it, skip next year's phone and start looking at its replacement.
  • I would totally buy the new lumias if SPRINT would have more options of them, as 100's of others on SPRINT would as well.
  • Tldr; "don't hate on the new 950s cause then others will too". This imo isn't the case. Nobody cares what windows phones fans think. I sell devices for a living and it take tons of effort to even position a Lumia 640 or even my own HTC One M8 for windows compared to something like an LG G Stylo or (literally) any Galaxy device. People don't care about windows phone. And after waiting since 2012 for Microsoft itself to start caring and being disappointed since, I, as well as many other fans are starting to lose interest. Unless they can dedicate more than a minute to these devices on stage next to the rest of this years windows 10 lineup, unless they can sack up and proudly call the lumias part of the windows 10 family and not some illegitimate bastard twins, and definitely unless they try to position their phone without demanding a premium price that no one will pay for these devices, this is not gonna get fixed. I get they're going for the expensive iPhone business model, but newsflash: Its not gonna work, cause you're not apple.
  • At 2.7% market share, even if all of us upgraded to the latest Lumias, we're still only 2.7% and too insignificant to get attention from developers and mainstream tech media, let alone the public at large. There is a deeper analogy regarding that movie: We, the audience, are lead to believe that the main character is on a quest to change the time line, only to learn in the end that the decisions which ultimately shaped it were decided before the film even began, and instead we have simply been watching predestined events unfold. I feel that's the case with Windows 10 mobile. Our decisions at this point (upgrade now, wait & see) have little bearing on how this plays out in the end, since the future of Windows on phones was decided some time ago. We're just here to enjoy the ride for as long as we can.
  • That is true, however the market dropping below 2.7% would be an even worse signal to the market than if the 2.7 remained constant
  • "Combined with Continuum, a "Surface Phone" will be a digital notepad as well as the "phone" that will replace your tablet and become your PC." So deep
  • Predestination
  • I believe that they should have gone with a more premium look. All major 2015 flagships have stepped up in their designs and consumers now expect high end phones to feel that way. 950/950 XL unfortunately may have the specs but the looks aren't inspiring. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • it looks like my cheap 640 !
  • I'm a Microsoft-focused developer of 18 years, and I can tell you that what they have done with the new .net core/native and universal apps with Windows 10 is really impressive. Hopefully devs will be persuaded to give it a try, and the app situation will improve. As far as the new phones go, I have waited long enough with my 3 year old 920, so I will be buying a 950 on day one.
  • Ah....can you buy me one too, I'm a little short on cash. I'm so happy to hear from someone on the developer side. Positive feedback from you people is what we all need to hear.
  • I hear talk of people saying they like the Microsoft direction and product, but they want to wait for the system to build. I think your piece borrows on a trend from your previous prose, "we are the hub". Taken together, these push the idea that we are what we have been waiting for. Taking a back seat doesn't lead to build up. Sometimes I wish people would understand that everything starts from individuals. However, I believe this article is premature. The phone has not sold yet. And I would argue that success of mobile isn't solely dependant on the 950 series but more so on the success of UWP which is off to a good start.
  • You're right. Of the three segments, this one is "for the fans".
    And I'm sure you're not going to see an "iPhone" first month. These will be the teasers for things St come. The fans waiting for a new flagship have it. In performance, it's a new standard. Not by much, but still....
    But beyond the fans, these phones open up a new world called Continuum. Misunderstood by most, and probably not intended for the masses. What they have done, and the Surface Phone speculation shows it, is Nadella's direction Beyond the Smartphone.
    The 950's are the open door to the future, and Surface might just be a big part of that future.
  • "So why are many fans giving the new Lumias the cold shoulder?" Who say's that they are? This article assumes way too much. That "most", or even "many" Windows Phone fans have or will reject the 950 and XL. You do not and cannot know this with even the slightest degree of accuracy, and so I choose to classify your article as an baseless prophecy of doom. The devices are not even on sale yet.
  • Great article indeed. The truth!
  • If Satya Nadella and Microsoft don't care about Windows Phone, why should we, or anyone else care.
    It is Microsoft who have decided to give up on mobile, and concentrate on developing Android Apps.
  • very true !
  • I agree with this. One note on android is very nice. (One little example) MS should really add swipe gestures to one note on windows/phone/mobile/next version. I use one note heavily every single day and such a little feature saves time. Maybe not much but it adds up. It's the little things to a lot of users that are huge. I use android 90% of the time now since I have ms services on every platform. I use my 1520/640xl/930 for testing wm10 only now and it's sad..... I really want ms to do well in mobile. But I can't use their mobile os just to use it. Posted via the Windows Central App for Android
  • True, and that sucks.
  • I am windows phone fan and I even not excited with 950 and 950xl. people waited two years and then these? these kind of phone could be delivered last year, nothing impressive honestly. and lumia 640 design is not any good to feel in premium. other than saving few bucks I don't understand why non-fans would buy it over iphone given t:hat 1) iphone is at least same fluid if not better 2) low reso camera but as good as lumia camera 3) are pps-even microsoft works better in iOS than windows, let alone availability and features of other apps 4) iphone has killer design 5) people can show it ...I am not saying 950 950xl are bad but I don't see why regular android and apple users should consider switching where pains are well-known. If MSFT make it as stop gap phone, then set the price should not be anything above 400, I know people would disagree, but how many people are buying 550 bucks phone as they are waiting for better phone. Someone may say well iPhones are released every year and millions of them buy it. True but have ever looked at the resale value of iPhones, my friend upgrades his iPhone each year, and he sells his old one few weeks before the release of new ones, and it needs only few bucks to add to get new one. for windows phone? no way ! I am sure 950 and 950xl will come down to 200ish (used) very soon. I totally don't see why some people will take so many pains unless they are diehard fans ! SN is great phone MSFT but I never believe he is good for windows phone (or may be he doesn't see any potential).      
  • 1) subjective
    2) speculatory and improbable
    3) argumentative
    4) bezels...
    5) same for any device You see nothing impressive? Larger and Removable battery, higher resolution, expandable memory, Continuum,lighter,reduced metrics with same screen size, changeable skins,optics,fast charging. Yet you mention saving money over an iPhone as the ONLY incentive but then talk about resale value of iPhone as a positive. Saving money and resale value are two sides of the same coin.
  • @aaron remember these phones are not meant to make the competition switch. These phone are for the fans. I reference Nadella point that he is targeting 3 segments with 1st party hardware:
    Fans, Enterprise, and Value. True it us unlikely that iPhone and Android users will switch, and that's ok, because these phones are nit targeted at them. You can read my previous piece " The Lumia 950 and 950 XL are Microsoft's Colorful iMacs" for more.
  • which are which? the 550 is for Value. which is the enterprise phone? which is the fans option?   why?  
  • @Jason Ward:  This fan is not impressed.
  • Very long and boring article!
    First, it's too early to say MS Surface Book is a success......and second, No 950 & 950xl are Not considered PCs!!!
    Quit the false advertising.
  • How can 950 sell well if it's not available globally? On the markets it is available, Windows Phone market share is on the edge of a statistical error. On the other hand, Apple with it's premium offer on devices pushes new model to every shop around the corner. Go global or die MS.
  • This is true, but I've spent several hundred dollars on WP since it debuted--Samsung Focus, HTC 8X, and Lumia 925. Ive done more than enough to support the platform. What sense does it make to spend $500 on a phone I would replace next year? Especially, considering that the resale value of the 950 could be terribly low if we find out a Surface phone is really on the horizon.
  • I know there is a market for replacing phones every year brought on by the Apple cycle, but I just don't see it. A phone should be able to last at least two years before your off searching for the next best thing. And as an added bonus, if you follow this flow, you would be getting a second generation hypothetical Surface Phone instead of the first. (If there is a first)
  • panos own words he want design consistency among all windows next lumias will definitely be premium.
  • I guess I agree with the overall premise of the article, but there is something about it that doesn't sit right with me. The idea that the current Windows Phone user base may contribute to the demise of the ecosystem by "sitting this one out" is perhaps true at its core, but in reality completely missing the point. Windows Phone is going somewhere, and the 950/XL are stop-gaps to keep the current populous happy. But the number of people on Windows Phone is so negligible that even a good reception from us would do very little to influence public opinion of app developers. They aren't stupid, and will care more about the market share % then the number of phones sold in a quarter. But Panay and team know how to build an industry: they did it with the Surface. It began poorly received, but continued building upon the good, changing the mediocre, removing the bad, and ended up with a fantastic product. This product was able to sway PUBLIC opinion, not FANBOY opinion. When they make a good phone, and when its backed by a solid OS experience, the universal apps will come, and the ecosystem might actually catch on. Nothing much different from what the article says, I guess I just disagree with the contention that what the community does matters at all in the broader scheme of things.  
  • A logical thought process. I hope your correct
  • A fantastic article. To me (and I appreciate not everyone) this hits the nail on the head. I'm about to order the Band 2, I bought the Xbox One last year. I've been on a 640XL from when my 920 died, bought a surface 3 for portable work with the pen and keyboard cover... So I'm looking to slowly update my MSFT gear now and trying to be tactical about a new mobile. The 640XL proved I want a 'phablet' and the 950XL delivers the spec I want, the problem for me is (and it is specific to budget I appreciate that), I don't want to buy a £529 phone (great it's comes with the display dock, but yes i do have 2 wireless display adapters for my surface when at home of out and about) to then need to fork out another £5-700 on a 'surface phone' which seems to be rumoured for May. My worry is, will the jump from 640XL (on W10M) be a big enough jump to the 950XL and will I be caught out in may/august this year and have to hold pack on a 'surface phone'. Tough one no doubt for anyone into the Windows Eco-System. Thanks again for the article although I am going in circles (wait or do it!)
  • @CMO27 Thanks for the support.i appreciate your conundrum. We are at an interesting time in Microsoft's story. If only we all had the funds to do what we really want. Namely,buy every device available when available! :-) Since that is not always possible, we have to make wise choices that wont harm us or our families financially. You can only do what you can do. Here's a candid reality. Microsoft won't pay your mortgage or car note if we splurge on a 950/950XL phone. LOL
  • If the 950xl was under $400 even under 500 and had dual SIM I would get it in a heartbeat. Right now I am s pleased with my dial SIM 640XL, truly, only a surface phone with dual SIM, wireless continuum...optional that whole big box thing... and a simple USB cable would phase me at this point.
  • The 950's have a dial sim option, and wireless continuum. So what else from this mythical "surface phone" are you missing in the 950 and xl? If they do indeed release a surface phone, you can bet your bottom dollar (no pun intended) that they will NOT be priced lowed than $500. So again, what is your point?
  • You have clearly said what has puzzled me about the lack of enthusiastic reception of these phones. They beat every other phone currently on the market, but we are lukewarm because they aren't a phone that doesn't exist yet???!!! On the other hand, what Apple and Android fans have that we don't is years of reliably steady improvements. For them, it is a nonstop party of one great phone after another. So in a way Microsoft may have to endure a few cycles of fan's holding back until they establish that they are really in the game and will share with us the commitment and cost it takes to be a Windows Mobile fan.
  • Does anyone here watch NCIS? I just watched the first few episodes of the latest season, and noticed that alot of characters in this series use windows phones :D
  • It's called product placement. It's not the choice of these mythical characters. Note in the credits, "promotional consideration paid by Microsoft".  Hawaii Five-O is the same, think I've seen Surfaces on Sleepy Hollow and Bones too.
  • That movie is Predestination.
  • I want a Lumia 950 XL! I'm not sure what people are expecting to see. A Intel processor?? A aluminum design?? A surface logo written on the back?? I don't know how a Lumia Phone could be better!
  • This. Holding out for a mythical "Surface Phone" at this stage is just pointless. They don't exist (granted, *yet). The 950's are that flagship that everyone was clamouring for. Just get a new back cover with the aluminum edges if you don't like plastic, but the innards of these are every bit the flagships we've been asking for.
  • I still use my gen.3 iPad every day, even after AAPL kept features back in iOS9. Why? Because AAPL threw everything they had into the iPad, creating an 'insanely great' product. The 950/XL looks incremental; I'm not certain I'll upgrade from my 930. MSFT hasn't bet the farm on Lumia and their corporate hesitancy has resulted in OKish product.
  • I have a 930 currently. It is a good phone and does everything I need. When it fails or starts running slow if ever I'd buy a 950 but switching just because a new phone is available is not a financial commitment I'd make yet. Great specs on the phones but given my 930 is still more than powerful enough I feel a 950 would be like using a sledgehammer to crack a nut power wise. With windows 10 I'll see how the 930 does first when rtm arrives. As to the looks I like the simplicity of the new phones however a range of colours would be nice out of the box. Minor issue that cases will sort however.
  • It was pretty clear from the beginning that the 950 series were just meant to be "keep Windows fans alive" devices. They are just transition devices until Microsoft completely moves to business only concept with the Surface Phones in six month. The cancellation of Project Astoria also pretty much shows that Microsoft is no longer interested in the consumer smartphone sector.  And you just have to look at the AdDuplex numbers: Only about 8% of the WP sold are high end models (9xx series). The majority (almost 90%) are either 5xx or 6xx. And of course there are like 3% of 8xx and 7xx models. It's just a fact: People are not interested in high end consumer Windows Phones. In Europe WP sells good but only low end devices. Because Windows Phones are mainly considered as replacement devices. You break the screen of your iPhone or Android phone but can't afford to buy a replacement? Just buy a cheap WP (and they are really cheap here - much cheaper than in the US unlocked!) until you get the new iPhone for free from your carrier. That's how it works. Over 80% of Windows Phone users are not buying Windows Phones again. Only 15% of iPhone users and only 30% of Android users are switching to other platforms.
  • Nonsense. Project Astoria, in fact ALL of the bridges, are not cancelled and are still coming. The removal of the Android subsystem from the last couple of builds is just a temporary thing, as with the removal of the ability to deploy silverlight apps in the most recent build. All of the web pages to apply to use the bridges are still live and accepting entries I stopped reading after that FUD so can't comment on the rest of your post.  
  • People just need to at least use Windows Phone devices,the 8.1 devices works great,many from my office purchased Lumia 640 from seeing my Lumia 1020 in action,some are contemplating Lumia 950/XL also from watching the presentation I showed them,I'm glad there is big New York Store opened,once we have knowledgeable sales representatives many can explore and see all the benefits from using our ecosystem
  • I she with the general message of this article. But this "paradox" started way before it was clear that Surface was a success. The moment people saw RT, as that is when we got the glimpse of hardware aesthetic, people started swooning after a Surface Phone, even one that would run RT. Why would we want that when we knew that was a stop gap stepping stone? I bought an RT, I eventually bought an SP3, an then a S3, and also for myself or my family Focus, HD7S, TITAN, TITAN2, 920, 1520, One M8, 830, and finally 640. Why? Well, they're affordable and my family breaks a lot of shit. But I was also keenly aware of where Microsoft was taking this platform. Then there is support. It's a breeze supporting these devices. Are the 950s the mobile Surface W10 experience people wanted? No, but not for any logical reason. It's all in progress heads what they want. It is certainly their prerogative, too. I will be upgrading. They have delivered on a flag ship phone line up. To those whining about no official successor to the niche 1520, they are being silly and that is it. The 950XL form factor will likely server their needs fine while being marginally smaller than the 1520 which while was an awesome phone was also always considered niche much like the 1020. If am when an Intel Surface powered phone comes, I'll buy one of those too. But there is no doubt that the 950s are flagship worthy and I fully intend on continuing this journey. I realize that many may be way, it's been long. I had reservations about the back covers because they did seem meh, but with a selection of fine options I'm actually quite excited. I quite like the removable covers of the 830 and 640. Makes things easy to service and protects removable things such as MicroSD cards ask while delivering a functional and noon intrusive way to personalize your phone. If you're Ben clamoring after a flagship you should be planning on purchasing this phone if you want any hope of a Surface Phone to manifest and for the ecosystem to grow. It seems odd to say that about product, but it's true. We have to use our numbers to boost growth in this current generation just as Apple fans do their devices and platform. We don't have the years of development and resulting penetration. We don't have the automatic cool, although Microsoft may be accumulating points with their recent bad ass offerings, so we just evangelize and recruit if we want it's success. Apple can tell users they at doing things wrong, deliver limited innovation, and make people pay top dollar for their stuff and people will do it willingly and with out remorse. This is a ground up grass roots kind of thing, if you compare the market to the present state of politics. Simple as that.
  • I have a Lumia 1520, 2520, Surface Pro 2, and Surface Pro 4.  So I obviously enjoy(ed) the Windows experience on devices that I can take with me when I relocate from one place to the next. I agree with the article, reluctantly, but I don't quite understand the beating the 950\XL gets from even my fellow Windows fans. From the looks of it, these new devices DO carry on the continual progress that my personal list of Windows+Devices represent. In fact, in my opinion the 950 IS the phone that finally knocked my beloved 1520 off its perch! (and likely the 2520 to boot) Regardless, I wish that the whole 2.7% share measurment would just get nixed when it comes to Microsoft and mobile phones. Instead, I would love it if Microsoft would simply shift their point of view to it being a success if they sold their first party flagship phones in similar numbers to their other first party devices. In other words, why is it considered a success to sell 4 million tablets, but a failure to sell only 4 million 950\XL, or any flagship device?  :)   Concede to Iphone and Samsung their global "phone" market dominance, and build just worry about making $'s off the same customers your having great success with already.   WAIT!   Isn't that EXACTLY what Microsoft is telling me the 950/XL is? I personally think the 950XL is far more like my 2520 than it is my 1520, functional prowess wise. In fact, it's a Surface Mini with LTE, isn't it? For sure it is if they will add Pen support. Forget the "fashion" score that so many Lumia fans discourage the 950 for, instead celebrate that this already IS the Surface RT LTE Phone!!!!  Or at least admit no Windows phone has ever been this advanced. Yea, tomorrow will surely bring even a more amazing W10M dev