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February 19, 2013

Comments

dies felices

1: Microsoft is brilliant at re-inventing its products. They are more than able to drop WP today and watch the success or failure of the Surface Table and assuming Surface Tablet is a success, tomorrow release a "Surface Phone" to the world, announcing it as if no-body could have even imagined of doing that before. Out with WP in "New Brand Name Here" a few months (x 6 12 18) later. Then if that phone gains traction in consumer pockets, licence the OS to OEMs and partners just as before. This would be a clean break, if it were a Microsoft only Phone then the carriers might not view Skype with such animosity as the product would initially start out with a small market share. I am not going to say that they will, only that they can.

2: Is it be so other-worldly to suggest that Nokia should move to Sailfish rather than Android. It's almost a home grown OS, it has the potential to grow (admittedly so did WP initially), they have an Android Compatibility Layer leveraging some of the Android Ecosystem and in its previous incarnation as Meego on the N9 the combination was considered by many as an IPhone beater. Plus as I understand it, Jolla have stated that their strategy includes empowering their partners to offer their services through their OS.

3: Elop stands for Windows Phone, he is its greatest advocate and must go.

Cristian Radu

@albert
Microsoft will begin losing relevance in the office space when Adobe ports it's suite to Linux. And all the other business sectors apps as well. Won't happen in the next 10 years.

@dies felices
Alright, lets say Nokia drops Windows Phone for Tizen or whatever. Why would I buy a Nokia phone then? No relevant banking apps, no music services that I care for, etc. With WP at least I have the prospect of integration with Microsoft services and at least one of the most important entertainment platforms.
As a entertainment consumer there's no reason for me to chose a Nokia+Tizen combination. I would rather chose a Sony+Android, they have music services, they integrate with Bravia TVs and will probably integrate better with the Playstation.
Even if Nokia will go for Android, I don't see them having any evident advantage over other Android manufacturers. Sure, they are probably better than HTC because of some exclusive services they may offer, but I don't know if that's enough.

Wang-Lo

Microsoft will persistently fail in any market where the customers know that alternate vendors are available.

Microsoft's phenomenal success in desktop PCs depends on the market's total ignorance of the concept of any O/S besides MS Windows. Unfortunately for Microsoft, smartphone buyers already know that one of the brand and model distinguishers is the operating system and application platform.

-Wang-Lo.

Tester

@Cristian Radu:

>> Microsoft will begin losing relevance in the office space when Adobe ports it's suite to Linux. And all the other business sectors apps as well. Won't happen in the next 10 years.

Err...

They already *began* to lose relevance. Why do you think they are starting to panic?

Granted, it's going slow but once a company realizes they are just as well off with switching to OpenOffice instead of retraining their staff for the next MSOffice version, the game is over - especially since OO doesn't ambush its customers with pointless UI changes.

And developments like this have a way of moving like an infectious disease, moving from one company to another.

And what's MS's response. No, they don't try to 'cure' their patients with a desirable product, no, quite the opposite: They throw even more poison into it with their rent-not-buy policy and even more stupid UI changes which create unnecessary costs for their customers.

Wanna bet that quite a few IT guys decide that retraining from MS Office 2007 to OpenOffice is less cost intensive than retraining to ribbonized newer MSOffice versions?

If Microsoft isn't one thing, it's being a reliable supplier. Their products tend to change too much between versions - especially since Steve Ballmer became CEO. You don't see the correlation between this and the problems MS is developing?

dies felices

@Cristian Radu

I would just like to point out that I said, leave Windows Phone for Sailfish, not Tizen. Jolla probably still have the Nokia culture but without the Nokia management bureaucracy.

To not quite answer your question "Why would I buy a Nokia phone then?", the topic under discussion here is the perceived failure of WP and the impact which that is having on Nokia, in the case of WP failure, then don't. However, Nokia does have music based services and mapping. Don't forget Nvidia's Grid technology which if successful may well lead to the likes of Nokia, Samsung, Microsoft, Sony et al to offer a Gaming service. As for end to end user experience, in my opinion they're all still out there to play albeit Android does have a significant head start. The smart TV market doesn't have a dominant leader that I'm aware of. Who is to say how the integration of your rich UI OS will migrate from the centre console of your car to the dashboard. Not to mention the bridging services across platforms to achieve seamless user experience.

In terms of services, I think Google and Amazon have the right idea of putting out them on every platform they can. Why not have Ovi Music store as an Android and IPhone and Tizen and Sailfish and Ubuntu and Firefox App?

Stevan Gvozdenović

I'll just repeat what I wrote before :

well for sure the board is in collusion else why would they let elop do all of this?! Actually elop does an excellent job if we only take into account that his job is not to do a good for Nokia but to do worst he can so that the company he actually works for(microsoft if someone isn't informed) can buy Nokia for as few dollars as they can. It's very simple and it has been done a zillion times especially by american companies and while I can understand how they do it in Eastern Europe with all the corrupt politicians I am surprised that this goes unnoticed in Finland...

so the microsoft, windows phone, elop etc. are not flawed at all they just want to bring Nokia down (and it seems they are very good at that), the problem is Nokia board actually the whole decisionmaking system which has obviously done unbelievable damage to such a mighty company, actually I cannot believe that even finnish government didn't react as Nokia is one of the strongest companies(at least it was) in Finland...

Sander van der Wal

@Huber

If Microsoft doesn't do anything in mobile then shareholders will be mad too. So what? Being a shareholder means taking risks. You can buy shares that will go down, you can short shares that will go up, and you can be old-fashioned and take part in a company who's products will not be as succesful as anticipated. It is called doing business.

Now, as long as Microsoft has the money, they will try to become dominant in the mobile market. And they will be working on the next disruption. No saying whether they will succeed. They have a very good presence in business and with the consumer focus of the mobile market that is an advantage that neither Apple nor Samsung has.

If you look at the value of app sales (8 billion paid out to iOS developers), that is utter peanuts compared to the value of the PC software market.

Tester

>> If Microsoft doesn't do anything in mobile then shareholders will be mad too.

That may be true - but why does 'position in mobile' mean to fight an uphill battle against 2 overwhelmingly strong contenders? I think for MS it may be smarter to support mobile on the app side only. On the operating system side they'll never be able to make money, given the advertising budget they need to sell their OS in a market that doesn't need it. And as long as their other software remains tied to an OS nobody needs it won't make any money either. As Bill Gates said, 'The strategy is clearly not working'!

>> If you look at the value of app sales (8 billion paid out to iOS developers), that is utter peanuts compared to the value of the PC software market.

Good point. Which makes any strategy that sacrifices the core business for a stronger position in mobile an utterly insane endeavor.

I always scratch my head when I hear stuff like "The future is mobile." Yes, sure, it's a big oportunity but the current attitude of emphasizing mobile over all other business fields strikes me as a big risk that may endanger the entire business of the company. Mobile may be part of the future but it won't be 'the' future.

The other question is, how good is their presence in business? The numbers I have seen tell it's slowly declining.

Winter

@Sander van der Wal
"If you look at the value of app sales (8 billion paid out to iOS developers), that is utter peanuts compared to the value of the PC software market."

Stock price is the discounted value of the expected future profits minus a risk bonus. MS current stock price is based on a monopoly 80% margin on sales. Any alternative OS that could compete will bring down the monopoly and its margin. Hence lower expected future profits and higher risks. The end-result: A crashing stock price.

Nothing gets a CEO and Board to spend more time with his family faster than a crashing stock price.

Lasko

@Sander @Tester

We are talking about platform providers, not application developers, aren't we?

Platform convergence is the dictate of the moment. I want to do work on the device I currently have available, be it a phone, a tablet, a notebook, a desktop or even a TV. And I want to have access to the required applications, the required data and above all a *sensible user interface* on all this platforms.

(And this is by the way where Microsoft pretty much fucked it up - by forcing the same crappy interface on all platforms. Just take a look at Ubuntu and be taught a lesson on how platform convergence and user interface design has to look like - boy, the delivered).

Why should I use a platform (or operating system) which immediately stops at one of these devices?

If you are an platform provider your future *is* mobile - and any other platform.

Lasko

If Windows Phone fails to succeed there is no longer a point for Microsoft to be a platform provider and we *will* see a shift in strategy to a service provider (Office, Office365, Entertainment, Movie Production as of recently).

And that's quite a humongous risk for Microsoft - because the driving force behind those ridiculous Office sales *is* the Windows platform. Office is not quite particularly good, but it integrates fantastically in the Active Directory, Exchange, Sharepoint, Windows platform.

If you take away the platform, Office is just yet another productivity solution which will have to compete hard with all the others out there (Docs, Work, LibreOffice and all the others).

The success of Office is directly tied to the Windows platform.

Lasko

That's the reason Microsoft is putting this ridiculous amount of effort in Windows Phone.

The Microsoft platform is a cage, created to keep customers inside, but once they are out, it is a cage to keep them out.

cycnus

@Lasko

Talking about UI, Microsoft & Ubuntu.

I'm an Ubuntu user, and I ****HATE**** Ubuntu Unity UI. I must repeat... I HATE Ubuntu Unity UI. But the beauty of OpenSource/Ubuntu were, I can use the other UI. I use KDE (Kubuntu).

And this bring me back to Microsoft again....
I think the OLD Win95/Win98/WinXP/Vista were GREAT compared to Metro UI.

***For those of you that didn't use Ubuntu... Ubuntu+KDE (Kubuntu) have the same UI as Windows95-Vista. Ubuntu Unity UI were a flashy UI that looks great, but hard to use like Metro UI.

LOL

Huber

@Sander:

>> If Microsoft doesn't do anything in mobile then shareholders will be mad too. So what?

Why should they? When I own shares which raise in value and/or give me lots of dividends, I'm happy. The business the company is in or is not in does not matter sooo much here.

Besides, who said MS should completely abandon mobile?

They could e.g. release Office for iOS and Android. They could provide sharepoint Apps, Lync Apps and whatnot. Or they could make sure that the Windows Desktop integrates nicely with smartphones.

But they don't. Instead they waste Billions in a futile effort to gain traction in the mobile market.

And what did MS achieve?

- Carriers are alienated because of Skype

- OEMs are alienated because MS became a competitor with the Surfase-stuff
==> Note that OEMs start to push Chrome OS (e.g. Acer, HP). Asus and Acer release cheap Android tablets.
Where are the cheap Windows RT tablets?

- Game developers are alienated because with the 'Modern UI', they cannot use their own App Stores any longer _AND_ the SDK was changed
==> So MS expects them to re-write their Software, then give MS 30% of revenue? Meanwhile, Steam enters OS X and Linux!

IMO Ballmer tried to copy Apple, but all he achieved was to alienate all his partners. There is almost noone left who likes MS.

Tester

@Lasko:

>> The Microsoft platform is a cage, created to keep customers inside, but once they are out, it is a cage to keep them out.

Bingo!

The problem is, on mobile it didn't happen. The cage is empty, the people are indeed outside. So the smart way to deal with this is to make sure that customers get the software they rely on on their mobile platforms, too.

What Microsoft is trying here is idiotic. They don't have any market share and yet they waste billions trying to buy some while at the same time anyone who doesn't buy into their unpopular system is left out. Yeah, great, why should these people try to bother to get back in on other platforms if lack of compatibility would only create more problems for them?

No, that won't work. To keep their business products alive in a non-monopolisic mobile world any strategy that ties their software to their own OS with no significant market share is a guaranteed.

On desktop this only worked because they had a monopoly.

JJ

@NokiaLover

So? It makes sense. Lot of Nokia users were unhappy, so they changed the to other brands. Now customer satistfaction must go up because those unhappy users have left Nokia.

Lasko

@cycnus

There is another huge difference between Ubuntu and Windows.

Unity is an optional desktop replacement, it did *not* replace the way applications work whereas on the other hand Metro did *both*, it changed the desktop and forced the creation of completely different applications.

I'm note quite sure that people hate the new Metro start screen that much (although it is actually quite bad), but I think above all a lot of people just hate Metro applications and how they are used (non-closable, stupid charms and incosistent actions).

cycnus

@Lasko

"Unity is .... "

I believe we were on the same page. :)

"I'm not quite.... "

That's part of the UI/UX of the Metro UI.

Durak

No Instagram, no Dropbox, no decent Skype (slaughtered in the Reviews as worse than useless and this from the company that owns Skype!!!), no proper working TuneIn (buffers and hangs unlike the smooth Android version).

Didn't a Nokia director say recently they are seriously thinking of "Plan B" being Android....

WTF?

Why not MeeGo from the start.... it could have been mega... makes you want to cry. Even Android now though may save the company - even Android from '09 or '10 could have Nokia beating Samsung EASILY.... makes you cry the chances Elop threw away.

Wayne Borean


Tomi,

Here's an article I wrote back in May 2011 about the Skype purchase

http://semiaccurate.com/2011/05/11/microsoft-death-watch-microsoft-buys-skype/

Wayne

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