In recent days, Microsoft has been in the news quite a bit. One might almost believe that a new found energy and innovative spirit are soon to make their way into the Windows landscape. Long-time CEO Steve Balmer has announced is impending resignation and Microsoft has announced it’s acquisition of Nokia’s Phone Division. This news comes trailing stories of the failure that the Windows Phone series has been. I’d like to take a moment to discuss what I see has the top five problems with the Windows Phone series that the new Microsoft CEO, in conjunction with Nokia’s talent, will have to tackle.
1. A Light App Store
Microsoft’s app store just simply doesn’t compete with that of iOS and Android. Microsoft has the same problem that Blackberry is facing. Developers just aren’t porting their applications over to the Windows Phone. We know that in the smartphone market applications are everything. A phone can live or die based on the apps library it has. Developers go where the demand is; therefore, they just don’t see a sufficient return from the Windows app store. Until the demand rises, Microsoft will have to create incentives for developers to want to port their apps over to the Windows phone.
2. A Lack of Variety in Handsets
There just simply isn’t that great of a variety of handsets in the Windows Phone ecosystem. In fact, Microsoft has acquired the largest manufacturer of Windows Phones, Nokia. We know that one of the things consumers like about Android is the variety of phones available. There are so many great choices out there, from the HTC to the Samsung Galaxy series. There is one hope for Microsoft though. We know that while there might only be one phone in the iOS ecosystem, the iPhone, that fact has not dimished from Apple’s success. Consumers value the connection between the hardware and software that Apple offers. If Microsoft can mimick and build on this, then it might be able to breathe life into the Windows Phone series.
3. The Cool Factor and the Luxury Factor
Apple’s iPhone has always exemplified the luxury factor. It’s meant to be a high-class, elegant device and it succeeds. The design of the iPhone 5 is simply captivating. It’s sleek, industrial, and modern. The Samsung Galaxy series has taken on the cool factor. Samsung has effectively managed to position their phones as the phones of the younger generation. They’re the phones on the cutting edge. Windows Phone does not come with a strong aesthetic too it. it is a sort of undefined product. Who buys the Windows Phone? Microsoft has to answer this question if they want to garner success.
Microsoft simply hasn’t marked their phones all that well. The result is that I and many see it as a budget-conscious, smartphone. It’s the prepaid smartphone of choice for T-Mobile. This lowers the value of the brand and pushes consumers away. Microsoft has to market these devices better and bring consumers into the store.
5. Late to the Party
As always, Microsoft has been late too to tackle the smartphone market. Their response to the iPhone and Android wasn’t that quick and their choice of utilizing the formerly called “metronome” interface may have been ill-advised. sure it is innovative, but it simply gives off too much of foreign vibe. Further given the lack of a fondness for Windows RT, it would be unlikely that consumers would grow a desire for it on their phone. It’s always a wonder because Microsoft was in the smartphone business long before Apple or Google. Microsoft’s best chance is to be as innovative as possible in order to offer consumers featurez not found in iOS or Android.