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WhartonBrooks' Windows 10 Mobile efforts are facing delays due to regulatory issues

WhartonBrooks, the Connecticut-based Windows phone manufacturer is experiencing the not-so-uncommon factory delay.

In response to a question on Twitter the company's @CeruleanMobile account gave the following statement.

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It is unknown at this time what the full scope of the factory delays are or the effect it will have on the company's self-imposed launch timetable. Greg Murphy, WhartonBrooks CEO, is on record with giving a Fall time frame for the release of his first Cerulean Mobile Windows phone.

As a Windows phone fan, Murphy founded WhartonBrooks so that he could bring Windows phones to the market that fans will love. Given the cost and business focus the HP Elite x3 and the recent removal of Lumia's from the market, the launch of Cerulean Windows phones could not be better timed. Conversely, a problem with production probably could not come at a worse time.

WhartonBrooks has yet to prove its mettle to skeptical Windows phone fans. We will update you with further details as this story continues to unfold.

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!

183 Comments
  • I will believe it when the phone comes out. Let's see what the ODM designed/engineered and is manufacturing for them in China. I am guessing this is the rebadged Moly PCPhone. Main concerns: design, camera quality, no camera button, no glance, poor build quality, and the large WHARTON/CERULEAN logo stamped on it. Also, obviously, no Verizon support.
  • Cerulean is a terrible terrible name, may sound good to an English speaker, but not to me at least. How do you even pronounce it? They should have went with something easy like Lumia, what a great international name was that!
  • I was wondering the same. Really not sure about the pronunciation. I also don't think it is a good name. Now that I think about it, did they say where they are going to sell their phones? Maybe it will be US only...
  • I think I remember reading that they are planning to expand their reach in countries to sell the phones, so I highly doubt it'll be US-only. Especially if they're trying to reach all WP users
  • Its with a Soft C that sounds like a S, if I'd had to write it the way I pronounce it then it would be Serulian ;-) And btw, Huawei has been quit successful with a terrible name ;-)
  • Yeah, I pronounce it like:
    SE (as in sell) RULE IAN
  • Lol, let's hope not.
  • Huawei has been successful ? Where ?? The only country they are among top five in sales is China. Btw, their rivals Lenovo and Xiaomi are now among the top three sellers in the other massive market, India !
  • Huawei's phones are a lot better than Lenovo's. Xiaomi, on the other hand, offers best value for money!
  • They make a lot more than phones too. I believe they are quite successful in communications and networking hardware outside of the consumer space
  • At least here in germany they are everywhere... Not necessarily successful but next to samsung they are everywhere in the stores.
  • Yeah, here in Perú, it is also the same approach....Samsung, Huawei and then Iphone....and I believe It is the same in almost all LAT countries...
  • If this new Windows OEM get's Huawei kind of sales it's gonna be the number one Windows Mobile OEM with in one quarter. Not thinking that's what's gonna happen, but Huawei sales figures would be monstrous in the Windows 10 mobile market place!
  • sir-ooo-lee-in But yeah, dumb name for a phone.  
  • I bet the phone will have a beautiful, cerulean blue case.
  • The model of the phone is still better than the company name.
  • Do we even have any clue concerning the specs of the device
  • That's what I'm wondering
  • The mspoweruser in the original tweet goes over the specs. midrange and not terribly exciting. .
  • They did say that they are going for mid-range phones, which are affordable for most/all, at the same time as giving a good experience. People are raising their expectations way to high compared to what they have already stated. They aren't planning on competing with phones like the x3. They are planning on replacing the Lumia Brand which had a range of a lot of low/Mid-range affordable phones (except L950(/XL)
  • kojackjku, the fact that you have so many downvotes goes to show how deluded WP fanboys are. I am literally quoting from their website: "The innovations we are bringing to our devices will be the most disruptive since the advent of the smartphone in 2000". So yes, how does a midrange do that? Only by price i can see. Perhaps offering a miderange phone for about 50USD once off and off plan. or something like that.
  • So, no mention anywhere of the iPhone....
  • And that is probably what helped kill the Lumia line. Too many mid and low range phones.
  • As many as we had of the Microsoft Studio before it officially was introduced.  
  • Yes, here they are: 1. Vapor
    2. Smoke blown up your ...
    3. Vapid buzzwords by the bucketful  
  • And yet they got a 3 article series from Windows Central. I'm not saying they won't put out a phone, I'm just saying...I told you so. it was a bit premature for that kind of attention.
  • With many DVDs/BRs you get a "making of". With WB you a get bit of it beforehand ;-) Why not, fine with me. .  
  • Darkwing Duck was made by the WB! :)
  • @coolh40041 You may recall that the purpose of the series was not about the phone, but the journey of the company founded by a WP fan, who has set out to bring a Windows phone to fans. That story is relevant regardless if they succeed (which we certainly hope they do) or fail (which we Hope they don't). Part one gave an overview, info and analysis, part II was based on actual Q and A with the CEO and part III was a hard look and analysis of some of the high points from the Q and A. All relevant to the story. Glad you continue to visit each of these pieces despite your opposition to them, however. As the only company I know of founded by a single fan, striving to make phones for WP fans, this unprecedented story, I believe, merits our attention one as an industry first and two as something that is unique to the platform for which we are enthusiasts. As a Microsoft focused site, such coverage finds an appropriate focus here. Thanks for joining the discussion.:-)
  • My only opposition was to the timing. I really hope they succeed. And good articles and reporting work to you. But like I was alluding to, that kind of coverage can turn a reader (especially in these tenuous times for Windows phone) really sour when some small snag comes up, like big brother regulation. That kind of thing can really hurt the small startup. On the other hand, waiting a few more weeks when it is all but certain that production is about to start (or maybe releasing one article before and the rest when production starts) can be a big boost for the subject company. Timing, it's all in the timing...
  • The timing of the articles was just fine. They aren't marketing articles. Why is it so hard for people to grasp this simple concept? Jason has made it quite clear even though the context of the stories is obvious. Stop reading into the stories what they aren't saying.
  • I believe.
  • "I want to believe" - we are entering the territory of Sci-Fi with Windows phone..err...MOBILE 10.
  • It's the new extra season of the X-Files!
  • The Truth is out there.
  • Let the doubting commence...
  • The doubting began quite awhile ago lol
  • Yes. Groundbreaking midrange phone. Sorry! Not "phone" because the smartphone is dead apparently, and Nadella is Microshafting us beyond the next bend.
  • You couldn't make it up....
    Oh wait, you just did.
  • Shocking. Maybe do another 3 part series to give them a regulatory boost. Hell, do a full on documentary, that will really help.
  • Ahh yes maybe its time for Windows Central (Jason mainly) to slow down the hype train for this. We have zero assurance that this thing will even come out, and if it does, what the specs are. The only possible thing for this tiny company of 7 to do is to rebrand existing Chinese models and maybe change some design materials. Expect nothing spectacular unless you like having your hopes crushed.
  • Lol
  • With modern day custom pcb companies it is entirely possible to not be a rebrand
  • What hype train? This is just an interesting story being written as life happens, not a movie where the ending is already known. Regardless of what happens to WB it is still interesting.
  • It's just as likely as the Surface phone to ever be released.
  • There won't ever be a "phone" with a Surface brand.
    Phones are done. They're exemplify a satuarated mass market. .  
  • iPhones sell to the iSheep who think that they need to buy every phone that Apple shoves down their throats (or more likely up the over end) in case they get laughed at by their classmates.
    Nice Steve Adams type trolling there ;-)
  • Of course there will be a Surface phone. It will be the mini and phone combined into a super cool device. There is a pattern in regards to MS only releasing things if they are awesome.
  • Have a serious doubt that ms will gonna launch any phone or not.....either it is surface phone or not.......
  • Except that there are people that have actually seen the Surface Phone.  It exists, it's just not clear if they'll ever release it (like the Surface Mini as well).  WB is nothing but vapour so far.
  • There were people that actually saw McClaren too. Instead we got the 950's. Good phones yet, but fell far short of the McClaren hype.
  • Alcatel maybe our last choice?
  • HTC, Acer, and HP Elite are out there.  Lumia 950's too.
  • And the Lumia 950s can be had for a great price.
    .
  • The 950 is the best value Windows 10 Mobile device out there right now IMO - £249.99 inc. Display Dock and it can run all the current W10M features and should run all the new stuff for at least 2017
  • Yes, the XL is a great phone.
  • What HTC phone is out there? That's not 3+ yrs old, did I miss something?
  • The HTC that promised to release the WP10 upgrade? And then pulled the plug. The HTC that does not support a phone they released? The HTC that pulls feature apps? After 3 HTC phones (which were good phones when released) Never again would I purchase a HTC Windows phone. No support after initial release. But then again, I don't think HTC would ever release a Windows phone again.
  • The HTC that is building Pixel's now.
  • Don't think this is htc's problem.....look at Blu.....they also opted out the option of windows phone.....they even removed the windows phone menu from there website......
  • ... and still no Successor to Lumia 820. 4,3" with midrange hardware and Windows Phone. Only thing that comes at least a bit close to it is the Sony Z5 compact ... but with wrong OS.
  • Given how little is being said about the specs, I see it very difficult to get out by the holidays. If this had more traction, I expect more to know/hear by now. We can't even put in pre orders yet. Since when does a phone available for holiday shopping come out so late with so little known about it? There would need to be time to get word out about the specs, weigh that against other options, find a store to try it in person, etc. It's not like this is a major phone maker with history of quality devices that we trust enough to buy from sight unseen. We need our time to try these things out, read reviews, hell, even use it long enough to write reviews for others to read. My guess is that if not announced in the next 10 days, it probably won't be available for the holidays. (Can you tell I've been waiting on the next big Windows Phone to finally upgrade? :-)
  • It's better for them to come up with their story
    and their gadget once both are complete. Regulatory issues are a nightmare, espcially when you go through that "experience" for the first time. There are more (bureocratic) slings & arrows than you can imagine. .  
  • This isn't the "next big windows phone." It's a rebrand of a midrange phone. Nothing really wrong with that, it is what it is. It just isn't "the next big windows phone."
  • It's not a real product, I wouldn't worry about it.
  • Honestly, I would just go to a SIM only deal and save yourself a lot of money. Grab a Lumia 950 or Acer Jade Primo for £249/£200. With the 950 you'll enjoy all the features that W10M currently has to offer and most likely all the new features introduced through 2017 until a new MS device comes out
  • I mean its their very first phone and as fellow fan i hope for their success. things happen at the best of times. So let's not look down on a company that actually gives a sh't about the platform cause they are far and few.
  • I wish them luck, but I decided to give the Alcatel IDOL 4S a shot once it hits the TMO shelves
  • when is it coming out
  • Not sure but it was posted on the TMO website briefly then taken down I would guess mid November
  • I actually like that phone but I just bought a 950 and I'm loving it about to put my 930 on the fast ring
  • I have the 950. It's an awesome device. I am just looking for change. I'm always on fast ring. The last build is very solid.
  • Even Microsoft doesn't think the 950 is an awesome device, it's a solid phone (albeit creeaaakkkyy) but overpriced and underwhelming as the flagship device it was introduced as
  • Agreed
  • Just waiting on one(hold up index finger) to be announced/teased/discussed and launched in a timely manner. The Acer Jade Primo was delayed. The HP Elite X3 was delayed. This phone is delayed. The Alcatel Idol 4 Pro is nowhere to be found except in leaked pictures. Why can't these OEMs treat these phones with a sense of urgency? Market share isn't exactly going in an uphill direction.
  • Because then you end up with exploding batteries.
  • Really? You're gonna use that as justification why every Windows Phone release is late? Good for you.
  • I really could not think of anything better to comment with...
  • Lol fair enough.
  • I don't get why so many want this company to fail. Moan if there are no phones and then moan if someone tries to bring one to market.
  • It's not so much wanting it to fail, more the fact that the 3 part series on here had more spin than a politicians apologies. Still no date for release but still want you to pre-order / register. And all this for what will be, in essence, a badge exercise.
  • So what. We know that a new Windows 10 Mobile operated phone is in the making, and it is made by "true" Windows Phone fans. Releasing a product that contains radios like GSM, UMTS, CDMA, LTE, WLAN etc is completely differrent from what a regular kickstarter-project would have to go through. We'll see and judge it when it comes. This is a small, enthusiast company working on a shoesting budget.
    Would they throw more money and investments on their product 
    it only would become more expensive. Usually time-to-market would normally a big issue,
    but given the current situation (considering the almost not existing market share of Windows Phones) it simply does not make a difference if a product is late. Might be even of advantage to br somewhat late
    if you believe that the more time goes by
    the more likely the world will hear some more encouraging and re-assuring/affirmative/confirming comments and real-life actions regarding Windows Phone form Microsoft Inc and its C-level exes. .    
  • Surely if it's a rebadge 99% of the regulatory stuff is done. After all, the Coship has been available for a while now, amd I suspect that's where the line is drawn.
  • The 3 part series was publishing 101: Click Bait.
  • Not really, he wrote so much stuff.
  • Given how many people care about this stuff outside of the bubble of the community, you can't call it click bait at all. However, I too share many concerns that this thing will never actually be sold. I know over here in Europe we haven't much of a prayer of it even being a thing.
  • Outside of this community, not many people even know Windows Phone/Windows 10 Mobile exists. The last time I saw one in the wild was over two years ago. Most carrier stores don't even sell them.
  • It included original research, analysis, and an interview with the CEO. That doesn't really fit the model for click-bait, which is just an enticing title with no new information.
  • Because it would have been better for them to shut up and just do it instead instead of hyping it up. You'll excuse us if after years of neglect by Microsoft, we're a little jaded, skeptical and questioning.
  •   which is where I'm at. just starting to have issues with my Lumia 1520 (it gets hard use, screen is now cracked, etc..). Almost ready to buy the 950XL, mainly for Dual SIM, only to learn how dumbed down the implementation is. I travel back and forth, USA / Mexico all of the time.. and I want equal call/data performance from both SIMs. The restrictions on the secondary SIM are frustrating. I'd like someone to address that.
  • They have to keep all the preorder customers informed. Leaving them hanging is just bad business.
  • Because the entire "company" is just vaporware. It's not real. They will never release anything. It's all to do about nothing.
  • I think it's wonderful that a fan cares enough and has the ambition to undertake such an endeavor. I mean come on folks, the phone isn't released and people are already complaining about specs ? Just be thankful someone cares enough to start a company. If anyone here can do better try starting a company yourselves.
  • And there in lies a major issue. How many companies fail because the owner 'loves' and is 'passionate' about his / her product that they continually throw good money away. In the UK we have Dragons Den, where well known business moguls help start up companies for a cut of the company. The amount of time you see a product that some one is passionate about, and then discover that they have remortgaged everything to fund it, only for investors to back out due to poor sales and outrageous forecasts for a product, NO ONE WANTS.
  • They're obviously retrenching
  • They are waiting for "the next big thing". =P
  • Damn this was funny
  • Dang it! Hopefully this gets sorted out soonish.
  • Did they ever give a target release date? Even before the factory delays?
  • They targeted fall. Yeah, fall (autumn for us Brits). They have cancelled a meet and greet a couple of times already. The website shows nothing. The only 'image', read photo shop, we have seen is a "badged" Coship Moly. As for regulatory issues, as the Coship is already knocking around, I cant see too much wrong. I guess it could be the good old FCC having a dig, BUT, you would have thought that would have been sorted a while ago!!! No one wants to see these fail but the pathway to success is definitely littered with if, buts and maybe. Not encouraging for us clinging on by our fingernails
  • Regulatory issues are very tricky.
    It's nothing you can fully think through
    when you do it especially the first time. You also very much depend on your vendors to provide / guarantee / document certain things that are considered acceptable by the regulatory auhtority/authorities. Testing radio (compliance) respectively the equipment needed to proof complicance are outrageously expensive and expertise handling those is as well. WB will leave that to a contractor, and there is a universe of possible things that possibly can go wrong. Technically and in terms of administration, communication and buerocracy. You also cannot push the FCC
    - they've got all the time in the world. And every time you go for a new round of getting approved
    (which again involves external test labs and maybe also laywers)
    it costs you a substantial fortune (for every roundtrip you make till you make it through) which gets added on top of the development budget and gets reflected in the product resale price lateron. .     .    
  • they cancelled a second meet and greet? when was that?
  • I think it's mettle, bruh. Anyway, I wish them luck. Dealing with regulations really sucks hard.
  • The coming soon disease is spreading throughout all of windows mobile! Soon it'll be windows 10 coming soon edition instead of windows 10 mobile!
  • I'm still rooting for these guys.
  • Regularity issues = radio issues It's a mess and it's very expensive. But when its done it is done.
    Once you got through this painstaking procedure you know how to (better) deal with it.
      .  
  • This is one brave business. I applaud their efforts, even if it never gets released.
  • Well, I hope it works out, and I hope WB is the next Nokia for Windows 10 Mobile. That's all I have to say.
  • LOL...vaporware. This is not the phone we're looking for.
  • Exactly
  • It's not this phone that gets me exited... Because this dude knows that he can't INITIALLY afford to make the WP he really wants... What's interesting is if he actually does release a device.. That's interesting because if he does then he can do another, and another, until he starts making some really nice devices. It's device 3, and 4, that interest me.
    Same goes with a Surface Phone. It's the SP3, or 4, that would be closer to perfection, and what we're looking for... To be honest, even a version 1 SP would be awesome, but it's those later versions that are really nice. Well, until the Surface Phone 7 comes out with the exploding battery feature. Lol
  • What happened?  they originally said it is coming this fall.  Now this year is almost over, still no word about realease time.
  • Good thing the season of fall stretches well into December
  • At least the whole November.
  • Actually the closer they launch to the March 2017 update, the better the users' experience will be.
  • Hope they will not go bankrupt with their Phone.
  • No, the investors just loose money. Unrecoverable money. Most likely what their legal contract states. Who knows.
  • If the moly pcphone is accurate, I hope the product makes it to release. It's a standard SD 6XX series, 1080P screen, 3000maH battery. Not sure this SD series has been released in US. Frequency check doesn't have any info on moly pcphone US modem support. I hope it's a good 640XL replacement. But camera, reliability, overall radio performance, production quality is unclear. Good luck.
  • 5.5" 1080p 6xx cpu and at least 2gb of ram would do it for the affordable flagship (with decent 16mpx/5mpx cameras). And smaller bezels with overall non-dull design.
  • PcPhone already launched twice, once in Spain as Funker and once in Japan as Mouse Computer. SD617, 3GB RAM, 32GB storage, 1080p 6" IPS LCD w/ GG3 2.5D, 13MP rear camera and 5MP ffc, Type C w/ Continuum and OTG, 3900 mAh. My experience with Coship is a tight build, nice aesthetics and the CNC unibody makes a solid feel in the hand. Should not flex like the 1520 did/does. WANT. Seems Coship ceeded US market to WB.
  • Hmm...
  • Windows Central, seriously...stop devoting attention to these clowns. C'mon.
  • Ha ha ha ha ha! Sent from iPhone SE.
  • Ha ha ha.... Sent by something better then the iPhone SE.
  • I am also sending on something better than an iPhone 6. Had a head to head search competition with Siri for a certain musical festival shirt's picture. Cortana won. She wins every time I do this. Of course this is mostly bing, but I still think it's funny.
  • Well I have seen iPhone running Windows
  • Sometimes I read the comments and think that we as WP fans deserve the fate we are facing because we can all be such ******** over the most minor details. We would make terrible coaches.
  • Bros... bros... you haven't even announced the phone or a release date. Don't start hiding behind "factory delays" already. It sounds like an excuse for not having your shhh together.
  • exactly, was wonderig when they ll come up with some excuse to buy more time
  • I don't care how long they take. SOME of us will flock to that device if the specs are right. No matter how long it takes the product to hit shelves.
  • Flock off maybe :-o ;-)
  • You can still #colormeCerulean
  • I absolutely hate "wp fans" with a passion.
  • Damn talk about a sad passion.
  • Should take up knitting. More productive.
  • I tried knitting, but the sheep had issues of the regulatory type. Apparently they suffered spurious emissions.
  • Getting off the internet and going to bed is a lot easier than hating someone.
  • Gotta love blind hate.
  • I wonder if it would have been better or easier for them to have just come out of nowhere and slapped a windows phone on the market.  Now a bunch of eyes are on them, waiting to see what happens.  There is enough oppostion out there to just get all the other items lined up before your capable to actually produce, and then you add a hoard of windows fans waiting on you....of course I know nothing about making a business like that, so I'm sure there is a reason behind it all.  All the best to Cerulean in this endeavor.
  • Can only presume they wanted this kind of exposure to get investment and to start to attract customers early - with a ...less popular OS and being a start-up business, if it were me I'd take the head-start on it any day.
  • Possibly true. It could be part of the investment plan all together, even an obligation. I for one am going to follow this no matter where it goes, as it has caught my interest since it was announced.
  • It maybe all marketing. For all we know this is now Microsoft's Mobile division working on the Surface 'device' and they are waiting for the paradigm shift. =P
  • I can't help feeling WMobile fans are being trolled by this company. From day one this hasn't passed the smell test.
  • Even a Go Daddy site is impossible to make as bad as theirs. It's like Stevie Wonder designed ;-)
  • Lol.  Wow, TOTALLY didn't see this coming....
  • Regulatory I read as approvals this company is not large and assuming they are intending to place on different markets they need the approvals from each country. This is time consuming, sounds like they may have underestimated how long the process takes or hit a few bumps along the way. Few tips for posters having read some of the drivel in this thread. 1. Do not respond to off topics threads complaining of off topic threads.
    2. It takes time to make things properly rush and you release a poor product. Samsung being an extreme example but plenty of others to draw experience from.
  • One mans drivel is another mans thoughts. I didn't know the comments Police were here. So, their you go, even we need regulatory scrutiny.
  • Maybe you should read the off topic thread I was refering too and you would realise we have more than just a few comment police.
  • What does Cerulean mean? I get that it refers to the colour blue, but what does that have to do with a phone?
  • What does Lumia mean?
  • Good point