back to article Microsoft Tangos into cheap smartphones

Microsoft is targeting the global market for smartphones outside the high end with its next Windows Phone, while promising most existing apps will continue to work with less hardware. Redmond announced today that the Windows Phone update – codenamed Tango – would run on smartphones with reduced memory and processor requirements …

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Anonymous Coward

THIS is it!!!

Forget all the stalled starts Microsoft has had with Windows Phone 7.... THIS is what will get them the marketshare they deserve

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FAIL

Huh?

I thought they'd given up with 7.5 and were telling everyone to wait for 8? The same way they told everyone to forget 7 and wait for 7.5, and 7 before that. Don't see many sales numbers being banded about, and its been out long enough now to establish what the punters who have actually heard of it think of it. Anyway, its not all bad news - when Ballmer heard 850k Androids per day were being activated the stock price of every Seattle furniture repair shop jumped.

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Re: Huh?

Who is this 'they' and when were 'they' telling everyone to wait for blah blah...?

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Facepalm

Re: Re: Huh?

http://lmgtfy.com/?q=microsoft+promise+more+with+mobile+windows+8

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Re: THIS is it!!!

In the US, the current Windows Phones are usually $0.99 with contract. Most smartphones in the US are sold with a contract. So I don't see it making much difference in the US market.

Of course, some have argued that the cheap Android phones have hurt Android's reputation. These cheap WP phones won't help its reputation. Plus, MS claims that 5% of the WP apps won't work - is that like the minimum windows configurations - Vista in 512MB of memory, etc.

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Re: Huh?

I think you're missing the point, these low spec smartphones are targeted for emerging markets.

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WTF?

Re: Re: Re: Huh?

@ Bob V:

So you are criticising them for saying future versions of WP will have more features...

Really?

I think you will find that EVERY OS Vendor promises the next one will have more features... otherwise no one would ever upgrade...

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"THIS is what will get them the marketshare they deserve"

MS don't deserve anything. So will this get them nothing? I think so.

Remember that these MS devices are not coming up against a void. Huawei is flooding the market with devices in this range too.

MS is pitching these as reduced capability devices. Upwardly mobile people in emerging economies want flash symbols of their new wealth. They don't want a product that has been reduced and is a step back and thus is seen as substandard and is branded by Nokia, who's star is falling.

Huawei has numerous advantages in China including that it must rouse national pride to see a Chinese brand take on the world.

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JDX
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Re: Re: Re: Huh?

Bob, you really don't 'get' LMGTFY do you?

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Re: "THIS is what will get them the marketshare they deserve"

These phones are exactly what this market requires where feature phones and dumb phones reign supreme. Only but the very affluent can afford an iPhone in China - where it actually costs more than in the UK!

Yes, Huawei and ZTE are aiming for the same market as Nokia, but you obviously don't understand the chinese mindset; where all things equal in price and feature set, given the choice, they will go for the foreign brand; the perceived prestige is what, as you've intimated, the upwardly mobile people want in order to show off their new found wealth.

Another thing that you do not realise are the ties Microsoft and Nokia are making with indigenous companies and their services. They've already signed on the dotted line for Weibo Sina integration (Chinese Twitter) and Tencent's QQ - which is absolutely massive, amongst other things.

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Yes, but...

...Even in China, Microsoft isn't perceived as a prestige brand. I would suggest that their best strategy is to emphasise Nokia (which is) and downplay WP.

Unfortunately, Microkia is also late to the party for integration with both QQ and Weibo, who have long since rolled out immensely popular apps for both Android and iPhone (not that I trust either of them in my mobile devices!).

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Mushroom

If the lumia 710...

Was selling at 150, then there is a real chance this 610 could hit 99 quid...

That would be impressive...

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Re: If the lumia 710...

Thing is, you want your product to sell on merit not on price.

Look at the other products that didn't shift until they were heavily discounted. The RIM Playbook and the HP Touchpad. Many bought them with the intention of hacking them to run Android too.

If you can't sell when priced similar or just under the competition then something is wrong.

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Re: Re: If the lumia 710...

This will sell on merit... On being a good VALUE phone for it's price point.

They are not trying to sell a premium product here you know, it's a 'down to a price' phone for a 'down to a price' market...

I don't see Android phones being criticised for being too cheap...?? They are trying to cover market segments, you don't do that by having a single price point.

It's called 'value for money', a quality, well designed high end phone, can have a high end price. A cut down, cheaper phone has a cheaper price...

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Interesting Direction from Microsoft

*

It's interesting that whilst Apple and Android are in the market of upscaling, Microsoft have gone in the opposite direction and are streamlining the OS code for low spec smartphones.

From the hands on shown (Verge and Engadget) i'm actually quite impressed, very fluid considering the hardware.

Also interesting that possible fragmentation is limited to 'apps' and that MS are actively informing developer's of the 5% or so apps that they are not functioning correctly.

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Re: Interesting Direction from Microsoft

MS is upscaling too. WP8 is the answer for a serious list of WP deficiencies. Going forward, I believe it's going to be two closely related operating systems, kind of like the days when Win9.x and NT were both in use. Unless they can make WP8 superbly modular and able to scale remarkably well, I think it will be aimed at a much higher baseline than the marrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrWP7.x will focus on.

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Re: Interesting Direction from Microsoft

Eh? Apple is a hardware company, while Android is a cheap-to-free OS platform used by a very wide range of hardware manufacturers. And while Apple isn't downscaling, have you actually _seen_ the low-cost devices running Android here in China and Southeast Asia? Microsoft is following this strategy precisely _because_ of the success of Android in dirt-cheap devices!

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Anonymous Coward

What's taking so much memory?

The iPhone 3G has 128MB RAM and still runs smoothly and can run the vast majority of apps on the App Store (all but the very latest ones that, for one reason or another, require iOS 5).

There are many computers in the world out there that have 256MB RAM and are running Windows XP just fine (to say nothing of Linux etc.). It's weird to think that Microsoft has to struggle to get its mobile OS slimmed down enough to display its big monochromatic rectangles with this amount of memory when desktop computers can do so much more with the same amount.

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Re: What's taking so much memory?

You have got to be kidding. WinXP at 256 MB was torturous. 512 MB was entry level among sane folk and that number stayed good for several years. I remember the first time I built a new machine with 1 GB RAM because it was so cheap and felt like I was just showing off. But things progressed and what we expected of our machines grew at a rapid pace.

There is a big difference in functionality for the iPhone generations. The additional memory isn't there just for show. Those WP apps needing more than 256 mostly have good reason for it. Some could likely be fixed to use less and Microsoft is trying to make developers aware but some things just need more.

When the difference in cost is less than I make in a day for a phone I'm committing to for two years, I'll spend the money. But for a third worlder who is looking at a major investment weighed against his earning for the whole year, giving up some of those heavy duty apps is a very small price to pay.

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@ Epobirs: Common sense.

"When the difference in cost is less than I make in a day for a phone I'm committing to for two years, I'll spend the money. But for a third worlder who is looking at a major investment weighed against his earning for the whole year, giving up some of those heavy duty apps is a very small price to pay."

The 610 and the like are aimed at bringing smartphone functionality in at a price that those not living in the bubble of the Western world have some chance of affording. This is engineering to a price point that is irrelevant to most of those who read EL Reg. The mobile phone markets of many of the "underdeveloped" countries are in the process of absolutely exploding. Like it or not MS know exactly what they are doing with Tango. Whether or not they will succeed is of course another matter.

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