Windows Mobile Phone plan panned by iPhone fanbois

Microsoft has a cunning plan to leapfrog Apple's iPhone and Google's Android with its Windows Mobile/Phone platform. But is it more Blackadder-Baldrick than bandolier-baldric? In IT Blogwatch, bloggers point and laugh, mostly.

By Richi Jennings. August 19, 2009.

Your humble blogwatcher has selected these bloggy morsels for your enjoyment. Not to mention if websites were cartoon characters...

Daniel and Steve Shen soberly said something similar:

Microsoft plans to adopt a dual platform strategy to promote its Windows Mobile OS ... so as to take aim at both Android- and iPhone-based platforms. ... Microsoft is expected to officially launch Windows Mobile 6.5 on October 1, 2009 and add an upgrade version with a touch interface in February 2010.

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Microsoft will not phase out Windows Mobile 6.5 from the market but will lower the OS price, when it launches Windows Mobile 7 scheduled in the fourth quarter of 2010. ... [This] will allow Microsoft to compete with [the] Android-based platform using Windows Mobile 6.5 and also compete with iPhones leveraging Windows Mobile 7, the sources asserted.
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Om Malik can hardly believe his ears:

The fourth quarter of 2010? I mean, does Redmond expect Google and Apple to go on a yearlong vacation? No wonder Microsoft is becoming irrelevant on the mobile platform. ... Android is going to kill Windows Mobile.

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The folks at Microsoft should call their friends at T-Mobile USA and have them send over a few Google phones. That would make them face their delusion. With Microsoft’s not-so-loyal hardware partners — Motorola and HTC are already cheating on it — it seems the company might have unfortunately lost the plot.
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Tony Smith scoffs, in a very British way:

We're not entirely convinced. Why wait more than a year to promote Windows Mobile against the surging iPhone? And why does Android require a lesser Windows Mobile rival than the Apple product does?

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Microsoft needs to address that sooner rather than later. By Q4 2010, more advanced versions of both Android and the iPhone OS will be in devices on sale.
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Phil Nickinson is a confirmed WinMo believer:

A touch interface in February 2010 ... is also right in line with what we've heard (but admittedly have have not second-sourced) regarding Windows Mobile 6.5.1. What phones will get 6.5.1? We're hearing the HTC Touch Pro 2 and Touch Diamond 2 — specifically the AT&T versions, which would lend credence to recent musings ... that we'll finally see the keyboardless phone on the same network at the iPhone.

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If you're not stoked about Windows Mobile 6.5, that's cool. We're pretty sure bigger things are in the works, starting with Windows Mobile 6.5.1, and really getting going with Windows Mobile 7. Look no further than the Zune HD for evidence of what Microsoft is capable of. It's going to require ... patience.
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Edward J. R. checks his calendar:

It looks like Windows Mobile 7 is one of the most delayed Microsoft products ever... and in meantime competition is not waiting and progressing ahead.

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Over 400 Microsoft employees, partly former Danger employees (makers of Sidekick phone), are working now under leadership of Roz Ho on non-Windows Mobile project Pink aka "Microsoft hardware phone" (or some other non-Windows Mobile project), but we have a feeling that once again Windows Mobile proper (now renamed to Windows Phone) is being neglected.
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Jonny Evans can't resist:

Just how long is it since every other mobile maker began fielding touch? Just saying...

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We suspect Apple will be looking at iPhone Software 5.0 by ... late 2010 ... so we’ll see if Microsoft’s in dev Win Mob 7 has a fighting chance around then. ... It seems to us the company’s got some catching up to do. Perhaps it should stick with making Xboxes and mice?
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Gareth Myles weeps for WinMo/WinPho:

Too complicated, too little, too late.
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So what's your take?
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Richi Jennings is an independent analyst/consultant, specializing in blogging, email, and spam. A 24 year, cross-functional IT veteran, he is also an analyst at Ferris Research. You can follow him as @richi on Twitter or richij on FriendFeed, pretend to be Richi's friend on Facebook, or just use good old email: itblogwatch@richij.com.

Copyright © 2009 IDG Communications, Inc.

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