Windows Mobile marketshare continues to drop as does user delight – the most important user metric.
It is a fact, Windows Mobile in any shape or form has a low market share AND it is diminishing despite of Windows 10 Mobile and new flagship devices.
comScore: Windows US smartphone market share falls again, now down to 2.8%
Adopting other platforms as a saviour?
WHY is it that Windows Mobile cannot get a hook on the market and gain traction – is it the next Blackberry? It is interesting to see parallels between Blackberry and Microsoft – Blackberry adopts Android after trying to hook Android apps into their own operating system and failing. Microsoft develops virtual Android under Windows 10 Insiders program leading us to believe that Android apps could be the saviour for Windows Phone adoption – pulls the plug on the development – Astoria no longer shipped in later Windows 10 Mobile builds. Microsoft continues to work on Project Islandwood – the transfer of iOS apps to the Windows platform.
Is this the solution to Microsoft’s woes? What is the real problem?
Everyone talks about the app gap when it comes to Windows phones.
With the release of Windows 10 and Microsoft’s push towards Universal applications – apps that can run across all Windows 10 devices and adapt to each form factor – there has been a slight uptick in mainstream applications that have previously been missing. There have also been a number of application withdrawal from the Windows Store but speculation is rife as to whether this is to give way to new Universal apps or if like many other companies they have decided to stop developing for the Windows Store as user demand is just not there.
The app gap is real BUT the problem with Windows Phone stems more from the user delight perspective.
Delight – User Experience – A dish served COLD on Windows Phone
If you are running an Android phone or an iPhone you get it all, the full enchilada so to speak and that is even a literal experience when not on the Windows Phone platform. Eateries have apps for Android and iPhone, get points, deals and free food – McDonalds offers free burgers, free breakfast sandwiches and coupons for other deals, Moes offers free burritos if you use their app and sign in each visit. Other companies do the same – grocery stores offer you electronic coupons to clip, keep your member cards on your phone, allow payment through your phone. Most businesses offer incentives, deals and freebies. What does this mean? Delight – a tangible measure of satisfaction for owning an Android or iPhone.
You are rewarded for having the device, you save money, you have a better shopping experience, easier checking in for movies, car servicing, the scenarios are endless but the deal is LIFE IS MADE EASIER and YOU ARE MORE SATISFIED!
Now switch back to owning a Windows Phone – you are filled with regret, frustration and a lack of satisfaction. Why – because you don’t get the opportunity to take part in any of the above. Is it frustrating yes, is it likely to change in the short term – no. Long term – maybe.
As a Windows Phone user who has been running on a Galaxy S5 for a few months I can express my level of delight and frustration of being a Windows Phone user. I now have banking applications, better access to my blogs, Waze is lightyears ahead compared to the now unsupported and under developed Windows Phone version (*Thanks* Google). Windows 10 Mobile is like the North Korea of mobile operating systems.
This is the cause of Windows failing on phone. The handsets are fine, not groundbreaking or gotta have in a lot of cases but Microsoft and its partners do offer a wide range of phones that cover all price points. The operating system and user experience with Windows 10 Mobile is very good. The operating system for the most part is hugely responsive, a pleasure to use and offering features that Apple and Google do not have – for example Continuum. While not a game changer for most, the ability to run your phone as a desktop computer via a monitor, keyboard and mouse set up is unique and offers productivity beyond what the competition offers.
Windows 10 Mobile Launched? No Awareness in the Market
Windows 10 Mobile also lacks awareness and leadership. Who really knows about Windows 10 Mobile? The launch if you can even call it that has been beyond lackluster. Microsoft kicked Windows 10 Mobile out the back door to the market with little to no fanfare. They are not proud of their operating system and again the soft launch of the latest handsets that represent currently the flagship devices was little more than a wet fart out of Redmond. Marketing again fails Microsoft. No-one is excited about Windows 10 Mobile or Lumia handsets – NOT EVEN MICROSOFT can portray or sell these handsets outside of the Windows Insiders community.
Brand awareness sucks and Microsoft may be banking on its currently very successful Surface brand to revive or kickstart a Windows 10 Mobile revolution. What does this mean though? Will we get a Surface standard/quality handset with similar design cues or will it be something more epic offering (as rumoured) Windows 32-bit support so you can theoretically run ANY Windows app on your phone? We don’t know and for now the market and general populous does not care.
If you own a Windows Phone you will be satisfied with the usability and operating system and in general the handsets are good quality.
I can’t get no-oo…satisfaction…..
If you own a Windows Phone you will be missing out on a whole lot of enrichment in terms of what is on offer from the other platforms – you will be missing the delight of owning a supported smartphone in a very competitive and active marketing network. No deals, freebies, poor quality versions of the same applications other phones have, less productivity enhancements for life in general.