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Poll results: 54% think Microsoft should re-name WP8 to Windows 8 Phone instead

Windows Phone Central ran yet another interesting poll this past weekend on the forever controversial topic of “What should Windows Phone be called”?

The proposal was to re-name “Windows Phone 8” to “Windows 8 Phone” due to the benefit of co-branding and the fact that the new iteration of Microsoft’s mobile OS shares the same kernel as the upcoming desktop OS.  The benefit for advertising seems obvious to us as consumers will see the significant overlap between the two systems.

Of course there are some problems with the proposal, including the fact that the Windows Phone group at Microsoft may not want to consider themselves under the umbrella of Steve Sinofosky’s Windows desktop division just yet. There’s also the issue of version updates and whether or not both systems would stay in parallel (though we think that could be easily solved by planning appropriately).

Still, you folks spoke up. Once again we had a large turnout with 5,773 of you voicing your opinion. Surprisingly 54% of you agreed that Windows 8 Phone would be the better choice (something we actually agree with ourselves) while 37.5% thought that Windows Phone 8 was just fine. Meanwhile, a small but significant portion thought that “something else” would be better.

That “something else” of course is always hard to nail down. Many of you thought that Microsoft should capitalize on the “Surface” name and make a “Surface Phone”. While it certainly has a nice ring to it, the name “Surface” seems more appropriate for a tablet device than a phone due to its structure and shape. There's also the (slight) possibility that Surface tablets could bomb and then Microsoft would have two bad names floating around.

The other popular name is not surprisingly related to Xbox—either XPhone or something similar. Though the Xbox brand is certainly successful, Microsoft is clearly courting enterprise with Windows Phone 8 and we’re not sure the more button-up types would opt for a gaming-centric themed phone. Heck, we hear that even the new white phones are a little too flamboyant for some business types—no joke.

The take away message though we think is clear: If Microsoft is serious about aligning their various operating systems, then perhaps doing the same for their names--for practical usage as well as branding—may not be a bad idea at all.

Thanks for all who voted and your thoughts on the matter!

Daniel Rubino
Executive Editor

Daniel Rubino is the Executive Editor of Windows Central, head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft here since 2007, back when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, Microsoft Surface, laptops, next-gen computing, and arguing with people on the internet.

  • I don't understand how that really makes a difference.
  • +1
  • It's all about Branding.
    In a few more weeks coming, there will be Windows 8.  There will also be Window 8 Surface and Windows 8 RT surface.  They want to tie everything into 1 cohesive package with the intent to let people think/feel that they can work on their laptop, grab their tablet(surface) as they go out the door, and possibly work on their phone when they are in between.
    If they follow the naming scheme they have choosen for their other OS's and applications, there's no reason tehy shouldn't rename their OS Windows 8 Phone. 
    It just makes since.
    I'll stop here before I get all soap boxy in regard to the previsou 2 1/2 years with WP failures and marketing...........
  • That's simply not true. This is NOT Windows! It is Windows Phone. A different product based on the same technology. There is no such thing as "Windows 8 RT". That's simply wrong. I don't get why people are so confused about this. Its really easy: - "Windows 8" (+ Pro, Enterprise...)
    - "Windows RT"
    - "Windows Server" version 2012
    - "Windows Phone" version 8
    - "Windows Compact Embedded" version 8
    - "Windows Azure" Renaming the phone OS to "Windows 8 Phone" would suggest that it is a version of Windows 8. But it is not! And it may confuse people more because it has nothing to do with "Windows 8 Pro". Again: it is a different OS, not just a SKU of W8.
  • I get that.
    You Get that.
    A Majority of the people on this and other sites like this get that, probably.
    But, the major public at large do not.  Micdorsoft is going for the look and feel from one platform through to the others.  It's all marketing.  Just like Apple puts an "i" in front of something and people line up for weeks prior to it's release to buy it.  And really, why can't a workable running and stable version of the OS's be used on cell phones and tablets with another version used on upper tablets and desktops/laptops?  As it stands right now, my 2 or so year old Arrive specs out better than my AMD powered desktop.
    People will look at Windows 8 and see it looks just like the newer phones and the tablets and that's all they care about.  SO long as it runs the same software
  • Geez it sounds same. Just leave it has it is. Windows phone 8, 9, 10 etc...
  • What happens when WP8 updates to 8.x? Then the co-branding idea goes out the window?
  • Exactly, Windows 8.5 Phone sounds absolutely retarded
  • It would be "Windows 8 Phone SP1" or somesuch. Just like how Tango is "Windows Phone 7.5 Refresh 2"
  • lol @ SP1...
  • Agreed.. Windows 8 phone just doesn't make much sense.. Windows phone 8 works fine because then we can just abbreviate WP8
  • Still think windows 8 phone sounds weird.
  • Very weird.
  • It sounds totally retarded and backwards. No im not exaggerating.
  • Yeah I had yo read it a few times. How the hell did so many people vote for that? Were they on drugs or something? Lol... As it is I say....
  • This is a pointless post/ poll. Slow news I guess
  • Nearly 6k though it was important enough to vote on with 224 comments. My guess is you're the odd man out here, not the rest of the users who participated.
  • Even Microsoft just calls it Windows Phone
  • No, they don't. We didn't watch then announce "Windows Phone" last week.
  • Well Apple also announced the iPhone 4s last time around but usually people just call it an iPhone.
  • No I mean in general, obviously they will put a number after the name to announce the new version, but generally speaking they just call it Windows Phone. Even in Zune website with Xbox Music, they just simply call it Windows Phone.
  • Not to mention the Windows 8 RP bootscreen that just says Windows.
  • I voted and I voted NO . Windows phone 8 is just fine.
  • I don't necessarily like the name but it makes sense I guess but windows phone just rolls off the tongue better lol
  • So what happens if they decide to make a huge upgrade to the Phone OS, Im pretty sure that will happen before we get the next windows, then it will be Windows 9 Phone... so I dont see the point in this drivel. It just sounds weird.
  • Are you suggesting that Microsoft is incapable of timing it's releases? That's exactly what's happening this fall with Windows Phone 8 and Windows 8. And names are arbitrary! "Mango" could have been Windows Phone 7.2 and Windows Phone 8 could have been Windows Phone 7.5. What's defined as a "major update" is subjective not tied to any reality.  Sure you can say "Well WP8 has a kernel change" but WP9 certainly won't, so that's not the criteria.
  • Not incapable but why should they choose a name that is based on that idea? They are just putting themselves in another weird sutiation down the line.
    I dont see the point in the idea of Surface Phone either. If Surface catches on it will be equivalent to iPad, when we talk about Windows Tablets we will say Surface, right? So why on earth would we have something called a Surface Phone, its like an iPad Phone. Its just weird.
  • Doubblepost
  • No he is not suggesting that... He is suggesting that the next reiteration of Windows Phone is most likely going to occur prior to the Desktop OS (and both history and the current Mobile market agree with this belief) and to be honest, I kind of agree with him.
  • I was thinking the same thing. Unless W8 bombs, it will probably be 3 years or so before we see W9 but WP9 will certainly be out before that.
  • Which is nice to look at? WP8 or W8P? W8P is sooo weird. Lol.
  • "I'd like a Windows 8 Service Pack 2 Phone please" <- ???
    And W8P looks like a smilie face with messed-up hair!
  • Repeat 'Windows' branding was a bad idea, should have kept short and snappy.... here we again with my offering... pH1 (pHOne).
  • W8P pronounced: Weip or VIP
  • Daniel what do think of calling it Microsoft mobile should never debate this again yes windows phone sound weird but what could they possible change it to at this point that would sound any better.
  • I suppose this site would then be called
  • Exactly, thos who voted to change of name apparently didn't think of this I guess.
  • Not really. I mean, what would we do when they go to 9? It's still Windows Phone, it's just a matter if you want to emphasize the desktop OS or the phone part. Either way, it's guaranteed that the press/media/common folks will  a) call it Windows Mobile b) call it Windows 8 Phone
  • Who even thought about and brought this Windows 8 phone retarded name. Just leave it as it is what if it goes to 8.5? If you want to name a phone go make your own.
  • Yeah, how dare people express opinions and stuff!
  • I think they should leave it at windows phone and keep going with the convention I.e mango, Apollo etc...
  • Dumb idea. I voted no and I'm sure many of the windows phone fans did also. Probably a bunch of other OS fanboys came over to mess up the poll and make you think this crappy name change makes sense. Please bury this article and cover it up before M$ sees it, and if they lack any sense, will think about name changing. This is the worst article I have read on this website EVER. I visit this site religiously every day. This put a sour taste in my mouth that is hard to get rid of.
  • I never voted. So it doesn't count. If I did vote, I wouldn't be part of that 54%.
  • I don't even see any reason for calling mango phones Windows Phone 7.5. W8P should just stay Windows 8, just like the desktop os won't be adding versioning.
  • It still has the words "Windows 8" in it. Phone is just there to tell you that its on a phone.
  • That would only make sense if it could run everything Windows 8 can, but on a phone. What this is is Windows RT watered down to be able to run on a Windows Phone. A more appropriate name would be Windows RT Light Phone. This is Windows Phone OS version 8, or better yet Windows Mobile version 8, not Windows 8 on a phone aka Windows 8 Phone.
  • everyone who took this survey. I disagree with all of you =P
  • @ Daniel Noticed you guys been doing allot of relevant VOTES and getting allot of Voters. you should consider sending these findings to Microsoft!!!  if you haven’t already :)  
  • Windows 8: Phone Edition
  • Windows phone???? Nahhhh
  • I don't think Windows Phone 9 will come out at the same time Windows 9 does—so yeah, no!
  • Online polls are easily spoofed.
  • Back when they announced the last "name change" I was really hoping 7.1/7.5 was just for clarification for developers and internal use. Personally, I'd like to see them drop the version from the branding altogether and simply use the device to define its capabilities, similar to how the iPad branding works. Think of it simply as "the new Windows Phone."
  • WINDOWS PHONE!!!!!! Gotta pave the road first before you can drive & take different directions. WINDOWS PHONE!!!!!
  • Really ? Microsoft has been doing it the way it is now from their first products...
    Microsoft Windows 1.0 (OS and then <verison number> )
    With that being said, unles the company is changing the way it's doing things Windows Phone <verison number> is the ony way it should be. Even having this should not even be in question.
    It's the way the company has been doing it forever and you want to change it ?????
  • Don't like windows 8 phone, why not just call it "windows phone"?
  • Don't matter to me. I like both but I guarantee you the new Xbox 720 want be changed to Xbox 8
  • People who dislike Windows 8 Phone because W8P sounds stupid fail to think one step ahead.
    Not many people answers "I have Windows 7 Ultimate/Professional/etc" when asked about which OS they have on their computer. People say "Windows 7".
    So the problem is really non existent. The phone would just run "Windows 8" in peoples terms. And in more technical terms it is more or less valid with the same kernel and shared code of the "real" Windows 8.
  • 54%........LOL....
    You people are really insane....
    Why should the name be changed to Windows 8 phone????Everything is OK with the name.
    "Windows phone" is a branding..  Every windows phone would be coming with that print on it.
    "Windows phone"(WP) is a dedicated name for mobile OS and extensions(7,7.5.8) are the versions which when combined make some sense  ie WP7, WP7.5, WP8 and so on..