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back to article Windows Phone 8 hasn't slowed Microsoft's mobile freefall

Four months after its formal launch, not only has Windows Phone 8 failed to win Microsoft a bigger piece of the mobile pie, but Redmond's share of US smartphone subscribers is actually still shrinking, according to the latest figures from analytics firm comScore. You may recall that last November CEO Steve Ballmer was crowing …

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Unsurprising really..

The phones may be nice but their still mee too devices in a flat slab kinda sense.

Save for a rumor of full fat PureView coming I'd given up trying to want a WP Nokia.

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Headmaster

Re: Unsurprising really..

What language was that?

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FAIL

Re: Unsurprising really..

Perhaps its time for another "burning platforms" speech - all Flop has to do is take his first one and cut n paste Symbian for WP8.

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There is nothing intrinsically wrong with any platform, it boils down to only one thing...

What is cool and what is not.

Symbian was and now is not.

Windows is not.

Blackberry now has got an image problem

Android was uncool but is now cool.

Apple was cool but now feels like your dad dancing at a party.

The cool factor sells phones whether it has great tech or not.

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Re: Unsurprising really..

> It's stable at 0.6% of the market,

Nokia probably shut down production to _stop_people_buying_them_, otherwise WP would be 5th.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Unsurprising really..

The problems with Windows Phone are many.

The OS is too fat, a battery hog of the worst degree, that fat doesn't allow it to run Windows apps however, it carries alot of the baggage of full windows with none of the benefit.

There are no apps. Sure some of the main one are there, but there are LOTS that aren't (no iPlayer for example, and none on the horizon). The app store is mosty a barren wasteland after the first page.

The phones are ***REALLY*** buggy. Sure a casual glance or a quick review won't show up the cracks, but a month of use WILL. The hundreds of small problems all amount to a VERY big problem - The phone is barely passable as a phone (even that is buggy, with the proximity sensor having a mind of it's own, onscreen keypads not working when needed etc), but as a smartphone, it's barely usable, lots of problems with bluetooth, random reboots and plenty more.

The phones are either:

a) shit (Lumia 620 - 820)

b) expensive (Lumia 920)

When you can get a Nexus4 sim-free for £270, you would be bonkers to buy ANY Lumia. The Pureview branding is a gimmick and consumers know it.

All these problems are why Microsoft and Nokia can't even give away Windows Phone 8, and why if you own one, everyone laughs at you.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Unsurprising really..

Symbian is old hat, bad to use and really terrible to program for.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Unsurprising really..

Weird, because I have a Lumia 800 and I think it's great. Only bug I have with it is that for some reason it gains 1 minute every week or so. My network doesn't appear to support time sync so have to adjust clock every few weeks. Plenty of apps for my needs. Only hardware problem I had was the small flap over USB connector bending after about 15 months use.

My wife has a Lumia 710 and loves it. Again, apart from the slightly-fast-clock (we're on the same network as well), no bugs she's noticed.

I use a Lumia 820 for some development at work, and again, not seen any bugs.

To me the the OS feels stable, clear and a fresh change from other OS. As for the hardware, I'm happy. I love the Lumia 800 design - so different from all the other flat-slab handsets at the time.

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Re: Unsurprising really..

Mate, if you're really expecting a Windows Phone all to be able to run Windows apps and you also think that makes any kind of sense, then I don't think you really understand the market.

Secondly, the Windows Phone platform is the most solid smartphone experience I've ever had. It doesn't crash, like ever. It just works, all the time. My brother has Android and the comparative experience he has with his devices is hilarious. He's constantly upgrading to the next new model in the hope that it'll finally be solid and fast enough, but it never seems to be.

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Re: Unsurprising really..

Symbian is old hat, bad to use and really terrible to program for.

It's such a shame. Symbian was way ahead of its time in being an OS that was specifically designed for the handheld market (it started life as Psion's EPOC, which was designed for the PDA market -- this was before there was a smartphone market). It should have ruled the world.

It was, however, really terrible to program for and that meant that it was difficult to program correctly for, and that the better programmers preferred to work on other things. There were good Symbian programmers, and there were good Symbian applications, but the norm tended to be slightly buggy and slightly second-rate.

Nokia had just about solved that problem by welding Qt onto the top of Symbian, but by then it was too late -- the other Symbian licensees had withdrawn leaving Nokia as the sole user -- and Nokia itself was getting into difficulties trying to decide whether to throw its main development effort into Symbian or some home-grown Linux-base thing (any of which would have been better than WinPhone, but they needed to make a decision).

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Re: Unsurprising really..

"What language was that?"

It looks like badly written wannabe IT Journo language. "Full fat" for example is currently in vogue with the hacks because they seem to think it makes them sound funkier and with their finger on the IT pulse more than writing "Fully functional version". Their other favourite cliche is "baked-in" which I'm presuming sounds groovier than just writing "included with".

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Re: Unsurprising really..

"Old hat"... Now there's a good reason to stop using something. </sarcasm>

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Re: Unsurprising really..

Indeed windows RT is full of annoying UX faults. the almost random zooming whenever I touch the screen annoys the tits off me.

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Re: Unsurprising really..

Couldn't agree more. I lost my HTC Desire Z and bought a Lumia 920 cheap on ebay. It's great, it does everything I want it to do and the battery life is certainly better than the Desire. The call quality is better, the GPS is much better, Nokia Maps - terrific. The only thing I really, really miss is the proper keyboard of the Desire.

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Re: Unsurprising really..

I must admit i actually AM rather surprised. I think the Lumia is a great device and a lot of people i know have taken a liking to it as well. I honestly believed that winphone/lumia was moving up in the mobile world.

Well, i'll be sticking with it for as long as possible and can't wait for the new Lumia with pureview tech in it.

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Holmes

Lumia 800 clock

"Weird, because I have a Lumia 800 and I think it's great. Only bug I have with it is that for some reason it gains 1 minute every week or so. My network doesn't appear to support time sync so have to adjust clock every few weeks. "

It's not the network that doesn't support time sync, it's your phone (and mine, having a Lumia 800 myself). The Lumia 800 does not support network time syncing, and it's a well known issue that the clock deviates quickly. A real pain in the butt Nokia could have fixed with one of the many updates, but the problem is still existing in WP 7.8.

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Re: Unsurprising really..

Have you actually used it anytime recently?

Symbian uses Qt, one of the best programming APIs I've come across. And having used recent Symbian and Android, I find them both good, each have their pluses and minuses.

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Re: Unsurprising really..

Things weren't that bad - Symbian *did* rule the world, as in being number one, as late as 2011. True, it missed the chance to be the "standard OS for everything" that ultimately dominated, because Android got in there, but it had an excellent run nonetheless.

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@LarsG Re: cool factor

Lars has hit it right on the head. We may compare tech gadgets based on processors, resolutions, memory, operating system, etc. but for the majority of everyday-people smartphone buyers, there are a few more basic criteria.

Sadly, probably the main one for most is 'Is it cool? Will I be embarrassed if I don't have the same phone as <insert celebrity here>?"

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Re: Unsurprising really.. Please look before you type

http://wmpoweruser.com/any-issues-after-the-nokia-lumia-920-windows-phone-8-update/

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Re: Unsurprising really..

What people don't seem to understand is that Elop is NOT Nokia's CEO... he never was, never will be, was never supposed to be.

Ballmer is Nokia's CEO. Elop is Microsoft's VP of the Nokia Division.

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So, Nokia isn't there... um... Microsoft and Symbian are both represented, doesn't that cover Nokia any more?

To be honest, I have a Symbian-based Nokia PureView 808 and am very satisfied with it. Yes, it's a bit of a slab but to be honest it fits my hands very nicely, moreso than an iPhone does.

And judging by the crapfest that was Microsoft 'social crap' that came with my last update, WP Nokia can fuck right off.

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fzz

3rd or 4th place

BlackBerry would be thrilled with 3rd place and unit sales in the high millions or low tens of millions. They could even do reasonably with a close 4th place, certainly muddle through to another version.

MSFT, OTOH, with voracious management egos to feed, couldn't stand 4th place, but a distant 3rd place, say, 20 million Windows Phone sales per year at US$30 per phone means revenues of just US$600 million, which by MSFT standards is rounding error. I'd be very surprised if last year MSFT wasn't targeting at least US$1 billion in WP8 revenue in 2013. Doesn't look like they'll get there.

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Anonymous Coward

Who would have thought?

One form factor down.

Now let's just wait for Windows on tablets to fail, then can we get back the half-decent desktop OS Windows was once and forget about this whole Metro embarrassment, pretty please?

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Re: Who would have thought?

You're really still enamored with a half decent desktop OS when there are fully decent options out there? Like or loath Metro, at least (finally) MS had a rethink of the vast cruft and user antogonistic interface that was Windows since the beginning.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Who would have thought?

You're really still enamored with a half decent desktop OS when there are fully decent options out there?

Quite the opposite actually but Windows pays a good chunk of my bills so I have to put up with it, and Metro makes it even more painful than before.

Now when it comes to fully decent options, we all know the general public won't use them any time soon. Me, I'm rather satisfied with KDE, thank you very much.

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Facepalm

Re: Who would have thought?

So even "techies" on this site (mostly mouse-clicking windodws "admins") assume the only options are Mac or Windows.

Was with(ish) you until that... but I think you did yourself and your argument a bit of a disservice from there. Quick tip: Sometimes less is more ;o)

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Re: Who would have thought?

"MS had a rethink of the vast cruft and user antogonistic interface that was Windows since the beginning."

Erm - and no again. Metro is a dogs dinner with tiles which only give access to all Microsoft's social crap. (XBox live on a business tablet FFS?) And you've not got a unified sign in - have to sign in to each separately from what I can see :-(

For any "real work" (including browsing) you get thrown back to the same old crufty desktop interface.

Worst of all worlds really.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Who would have thought?

Open source taking over the tech world? since when? I've been hearing about it for at least the last 10 years and yet I've not noticed any significant gains over the last 5 years at least.

On the desktop I've heard people are actually getting rid of Linux not switching to it. Those few big name PC vendors who dabled with it seem to have lost interest as well.

In the server world, it had its chance for all those years where windows server was still considered a joke. Now most people take windows server seriously and Linux had its chance there and missed it.

On mobiles - well I guess there is android, but in my view that doesnt really fit the traditional sense of open source as there arent that many people messing with android source other than to get the latest versions on older phones.

The revolution, what revolution????

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FAIL

Re: Who would have thought?

Microsoft did indeed have a good go of creating a new interface. They thought about it, obviously thought about it some more and then against all better judgement (even by the yanks standards) Ignored the concept of 99% of the worlds end users being in a work environment and then went ahead anyway and ****ed it.

....Badly.

But in the process they bought out Nokia from the inside and brought them down as well. (I was an N900 owner and as such I will never own a Nokia.)

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Re: Who would have thought?

You made my day. If a "full decent" OS cannot pay a good chunk of your bills, what is the use of having it?

Besides, why put up with Metro? You can always stick with XP or 7 or even the failed Vista right? Why upgrade yourself to Windows 8?

Besides, just a little comparision. If general public won't use the fully decent options, are you presuming that general public is using Android just for the same reason?

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Re: Who would have thought?

I agree that the Open Source idea is cool. However, I do not agree with the point "Those that have only used Windows do not know how good Linux Mint is".

Linux Mint is good and super cool(at least that's my opinion). However, Windows is super easy that Linux Mint. Like to do anything with the system? There is some X software available which let you get the job done just by mouse clicks.

I am not saying that Linux uses only terminals. That's not I am intending to do. I do know that doing Admin things through GUI is there. However, they get you only to a certain height. For more user intensive work, through GUI is either too tough or highly impossible. This is not the case with Windows.

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Re: Who would have thought?

"For any "real work" (including browsing) you get thrown back to the same old crufty desktop interface."

Ha ha. Please come back and post here once you have actually started using Windows 8.

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@spazinvader

If a "full decent" OS cannot pay a good chunk of your bills, what is the use of having it? Besides, why put up with Metro? You can always stick with XP or 7 or even the failed Vista right? Why upgrade yourself to Windows 8?

You gotta be kidding. It doesn't take a genius to understand that in IT we don't always have much control over our customers' environments and that, yes, sometimes we have to put up with it because that's our friggin' job. Fortunately, just because it's our job to support environments we don't necessary like, it doesn't mean that we have to inflict them on ourselves at all times. Duh.

I am not saying that Linux uses only terminals. [...] For more user intensive work, through GUI is either too tough or highly impossible. This is not the case with Windows.

You seem to assume that admin GUIs always are a desirable thing. Well, I for one will take text config files and terminal commands any day because they're much more convenient and productive to work with compared to layers of dialog boxes that are a pain to navigate. To each his own I guess.

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Re: Who would have thought?

spazinvader sez: "Ha ha. Please come back and post here once you have actually started using Windows 8."

Been there, done that. And yes, you really do get thrown back to the "same old crufty desktop" for a lot of 'real work. For instance, how about file copy? I think that qualifies as 'real work.' Or making configuration settings that are inexplicably not available from the Charms bar? Pretty real. Or how about running Office - even the very latest version? Yep, still on the desktop, and cruftier than ever.

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Anonymous Coward

What's up with the chart

The chart doesn't add up to 100%. The unknown mobile category has grown by .2 though.

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The other 0.4%

Ubuntu for phones is on its way (late this year?), so it cannot be that.

Firefox for phones should appear in this month if you search very hard, but it cannot be that yet.

Sailfish (next-generation MeeGo made by ex-Nokia Linux programmers) is in progress and I expect it will turn up in India and Finland this year.

Tizen (next-generation MeeGo made by Samsung) should arrive this year too. European and US will be able to buy it despite Apple's inevitable tantrum.

Palm OS - there could be some legacy devices still going, but it is hard to see how Palm could cause an increase in market share.

Bada (Another Samsung OS) got 2.9% of world sales last year, but mostly in poor countries. Some of the 0.4% of US market share could be from Africans bringing their bada phones to the US.

MeeGo (The Linux OS Elop restricted to small markets and it still almost outsold Windows Phone 7) might account for some of that 0.4% despite Elop's best efforts.

Windows phones are in fourth place if you only look at the US. World-wide, they are behind Bada. Tizen could easily pass Windows this year (US or world). If Elop keeps working hard, Windows could fall behind Sailfish. Elop would need a lot of help from Ballmer to push Windows below Firefox and Ubuntu. I cannot see how Windows could fall behind Palm this year, but if anyone can achieve that, it will be Elop and Ballmer.

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Re: The other 0.4%

"Tizen (next-generation MeeGo made by Samsung) should arrive this year too. European and US will be able to buy it despite Apple's inevitable tantrum."

Will Samsung replace their Bada range with Tizen?

I have always assumed they would, but I have not seen it stated. Bada seems to sell twice as many phones globally as WP and most techies have never even heard of it and for some reason lots of "analysts" seem to disregard its existence.

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WTF?

Re: The other 0.4%

"Bada (Another Samsung OS) got 2.9% of world sales last year, but mostly in poor countries. Some of the 0.4% of US market share could be from Africans bringing their bada phones to the US."

Like France?

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Re: The other 0.4%

Buddy... If you think Firefox for phones and Ubuntu for phones can outsell Windows Phone, you are truly naive. Period.

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Unhappy

History

I've not forgotten what carp WM6 & 6.5 were, and the total lack of updates and bug fixes. And how WP7 users were so rapidly backwatered. There is no way they are getting any more of my money. Ever.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: History

Funny, my old WM6.5 HTC HD2 is still going strong as a satnav running CoPilot. Tried it for web browsing as well, and it still worked fine. Apart from the ease of getting new apps, it wasn't that bad.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: History

"Funny, my old WM6.5 HTC HD2 is still going strong as a satnav running CoPilot. Tried it for web browsing as well, and it still worked fine. Apart from the ease of getting new apps, it wasn't that bad."

Its interesting how almost the exact same thing applies to Symbian. Neither were great to code for, neither had a decent app store. But other than that, both were solid OS's that with the right direction and marketting could have had a much better future. Tomtom on my old N series nokias was great as a GPS back in the day.

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Re: History

Please do not buy Android(other than Nexus) as well. Still many Android runs in Android version 2.*.

And lot more phones are stuck at 4.0 and 4.1 despite 4.2 was released long back. Better buy an iPhone or Nexus range of phones rather than any other.

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Happy

Re: History

Robert E Harvey sez: "I've not forgotten what carp WM6 & 6.5 were..."

Actually, WM was a great OS, for its time. Powerful. UI a bit limited, but easily upgraded. Tons of superb apps (we called it 'software,' back then). MS should have evolved WM into the niche now usurped by the bizarro WP. Instead, it threw away backward compatibility (previously a company hallmark), and threw a sizable population of WM users under the bus. A couple of years from now, they'll probably do the same to everyone who swallows the current WP pitch.

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Devil

Good... Good...

My schadenfreude for Nokia knows no bounds. Sweet, sweet schadenfreude.

Don't be sad, my precious N9. You don't have any connection to them anymore. They were the first to turn their backs to you.

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