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back to article Windows Phone 8 stands a chance as Apple, Android dither

The markets have delivered their verdict on Nokia. Failure is priced in, and the company is deemed to be worth little more than its intellectual property portfolio. The Finns may as well pack up their bags, go home, and whip themselves with birch twigs in the sauna – there’s no future to compete for. That’s also the conventional …

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HMB
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Re: Counting to 12 on 2 hands?

I'm stunned no one has brought binary into the equation yet, so I will.

I can count to 31 on ONE hand. It wasn't quick though. :P

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Stop

Re: Counting to 12 on 2 hands?

Challenge accepted. The Sumerians had a counting system that could be used to count to sixty on two hands with no extra digits required. The thumb on the left had was used as a pointer to the bones of the other fingers, thus you can count to twelve on one hand. The right hand counted the number of twelves. Thus with five fingers on the right hand, 5 x 12 = 60. Incidentally, thats why we have 60 seconds in a minute and 60 minutes in an hour.

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Coat

Re: Counting to 12 on 2 hands?

I can manage 15 on just 4 fingers.

Use Binary......

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For the first time...

scanning the papers, MS & Nokia were talked about in the same breath as iPhone & Android.

If they start offering some kind of app swap ("We'll buy you 50 new apps to replace the ones you have on iPhone!") they'd probably get more traction.

The more the merrier AFAIAC.

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Games Console market.

Three dedicated hardware platforms, yes. But when you talk about "flourishing ecosystems" in that segment you also have to factor in the fourth, the PC.

Then again, when it comes to dedicated gaming hardware and its associated software you've overlooked the handhelds which have a significant chunk of that market too, not always in happy coexistance with their larger cousins.

So in that contestable market there are already more than three players happily coexisting and competing.

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Re: Games Console market.

Four ecosystems, including the PC - though Crytek amongst other developers are saying that they don't actually sell many games, due to piracy. Those PC gamers who don't pirate often wait til a game is about a fiver on Steam. I don't know, but I suspect many XBOX users spend more on the Live Gold subscription that they do on software.

And there is the stirrings of some other systems in the works, such as streaming from the cloud, or Valve's rumoured Linux box (though this could arguably be considered a PC)...

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Holmes

3 phone OS's?

Yeah - Android, iOS and Blackberry!

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JDX
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Content question to Android/Open fans

AFAIK MS' music store sells you music in non-DRM MP3 format the same as Amazon does; you need to use their special software to copy stuff betwixt phone/PC but you CAN copy it onto your PCs and other devices freely (please correct if wrong).

Does that count as a plus to those who like to whinge about Kindle/iTunes walled gardens, at all? That you can have a Windwos phone and be safe to move your music onto an Android later?

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@JDX Re: Apple's walled garden for music

There isn't one.

Apple removed DRM on music many years ago. Please keep up.

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JDX
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Re: @JDX Apple's walled garden for music

So sorry for not owning an iPhone.

If that's the case why does everyone cry about Apple's evil walled garden then? Music is by far the biggest area of content paid for and if you're not locked in to Apple, what's the problem for most users (i.e. not including the few who buy lots of video on their phone)?

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Re: @JDX Apple's walled garden for music

I always thought the 'Walled Garden' referred to the inability to put things on there unless they were bought via Apple's own store. Before Apple, remember, it was usually the case that you could install something from anywhere. The walled garden seem to be Apple's one area where they really did pioneer things. (Mostly unfortunately, imo. Now MS is following suit).

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Mushroom

Re: @JDX Apple's walled garden for music

But you cant copy it off the iphone by plugging it into a new PC and syncing once there, so it might as well be DRMd

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Re: @JDX Apple's walled garden for music

Confused at the apple walled garden comment, as I can import any songs I want into an iTunes library and sync it happily with my iphone? Where you do struggle is, as mentioned if you want to move music off your iphone to a PC that isnt your main PC. simple answer to that is move it to that PC and copy/send, yes it's irritating but not a massive problem I ever get stressed about.

Lots of things to get irritated at apple for but this isnt one!

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Meh

Re: @JDX Apple's walled garden for music

You have to be kidding , I have thousands of tracks on my idevices. Of course you can put non store bought material on them.

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Boffin

Wideband audio / HD Voice

You're mistaken about this. Apple isn't leading the pack: Nokia have been well ahead of the game here. They supported wideband voice calls in the X6, which dates back to 2009. Today most Android handsets support the standard too.

Network support is still patchy though. In the UK, Orange branded the technology as "HD Voice", unveiling it in September 2010. Three implemented it in June 2011. On both networks it's only available with a 3G signal, and there is no cross-network connectivity, so if you're on Orange and you call a mate on Three, your call gets downsampled to narrowband.

Needless to say there's no support yet on landlines, although a few plucky VOIP providers support wideband voice for intra-office environments.

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Windows

Bit confused by this "HD Voice" mularkey.

A solution attempting to fix a problem that doesn't exist"?

"Darling, I'm on the train". "Can you get some milk and a dozen eggs on your way home?". "We're out of bogroll, nip downstairs and bring a newspaper to the bathroom". Usual conversations.

HD-voice. Gonna make a difference?

WHY?? Assuming the recipient also has a HD-enabled phone, it might make fuc*k-all difference. If the recipient does NOT have an HD-enabled phone, It'll make fuc*k-all difference..

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Re: Bit confused by this "HD Voice" mularkey.

Personally, if the often poor voice quality can be improved, I'm all for that. Mind you, I liked HD over SD as well and I remember the vast numbers of posts on here that angrily argued how it was unnecessary and they couldn't see the difference or you were an idiot to care about it if you could.

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JDX
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Re: Bit confused by this "HD Voice" mularkey.

lots of people said HD TV wasn't needed, but it's quite nice :)

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challenge accepted

"I challenge you to get past a dozen, counting Adobe Creative Suite and Microsoft Office as one app apiece."

1) Adobe Creative Suite

2) Microsoft Office

3) Autodesk AutoCAD

4) Mindjet MindManager

5) Real Software Real Studio

6) Claro ClaroRead

7) Quark QuarkXPress

8) ABBY FineReader

9) Kaspersky Anti-Virus

10) Avid Media Composer

11) Steinberg Cubase

12) NewTek LightWave 3D

13) Pixar RenderMan

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(Written by Reg staff) Bronze badge

Re: challenge accepted

Steam

Skype

Evernote

...

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Re: challenge accepted

Skydrive?

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Re: challenge accepted

Steinberg Wavelab - relatively new to Mac, though OSX has never been short of audio editors

Autodesk Inventor Fusion - this is an interesting development: A proper grown up parametric CAD package for OSX

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Anonymous Coward

Re: challenge accepted

Unity (www.unity3d.com), which incidentally makes it easy to port games across platforms.

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Re: challenge accepted

World Of Warcraft

Diablo 3

Diablo 2

Warcraft 3

Starcraft 2

Starcraft

you get the idea, Blizzard release everything on Mac and Windows. Which is great because on Mac it uses OpenGl rendering so it works a treat on Linux too.

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Re: challenge accepted

Maya

Zbrush

Sound Forge Pro

Filemaker Pro

Firefox

Opera

Safari (until just recently)

iTunes

Quicken (bwa ha ha, never mind)

Matlab

SlickEdit

Cinema 4D

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JDX
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Re: challenge accepted

Unity3D is a web-plugin and software run-time (a bit like Java/.NET) not a program.

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Boffin

Re: challenge accepted

Inspiration (inspiration.com) (redmond, fruit)

Smartboard Notebook (redmond, fruit, penguin)

ActiveEdition (redmond, fruit)

Audacity (redmond, fruit. penguin)

Ardour (fruit, penguin)

GIMP (redmond, fruit, penguin)

As well as...

Gvim/vim (redmond, fruit, penguin, various spacecraft)

Emacs (redmond, fruit, penguin, various phones, your fridge)

R (anything you can compile code on, so a bit of a cheat, along with rsync, wget &c)

LyX (redmond, fruit, penguin)

Gnumeric (redmond, penguin, fruit with some fiddling) OK cheating its a basic spreadsheet but very lovely approach to chart creation and styling, including box plots.

Inkscape (redmond, fruit, penguin)

Basically, I could duplicate most of my software on a fruit or redmond computer tomorrow if the penguins died out. Portable apps mean that I can run most of my preferred applications from a USB stick in redmondworld.

NB fruit implies native Quartz, not X11.

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Re: challenge accepted

Wrong, Unity is a program. How do you think Unity apps/plugin content is generated? (In fact, it was Mac-only for the first several years, so the Windows version is actually a port.)

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Anonymous Coward

Some of us stuck with Amiga computers despite Commodore dying off and the hardware falling behind. What hardware upgrades did appear were often costly. I can't remember exactly how much, but costs of about £500-800 for a CPU upgrade board weren't unusual.

Why didn't we use the Mac or PC? both had very similar bad OSes. Mac had very primitive multitasking until OSX and Windows 95 may have tried to introduce full multitasking but it wasn't flawless. Plus it was slow and unstable (who remembers explorer.exe dying all the time? they never did fix that one).

So given iOS is like Mac OS of old (simple and falling behind) and Android is like the unstable, overcomplicated mess that Windows used to be and requires a lot of grunt to get it to perform, I'm glad there's a third option.

WP may not have as many apps, but there's enough to do what I want. The OS is fast and efficient even on a single core.

As a fellow Amiga user used to say to me about him using the Amiga, "It's not better, it's just different". This is something Fandroids just can't appreciate.

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Anonymous Coward

Well I thought I was a a rare beast, an Amiga user until 2000 and a Windows Phone 7 User!

I remember them days well, £600 for a Blizzard 1260 or something ridiculous like that, never afforded one of those, had an Apollo 1240 with a 40MHz 68040, had to prop one side of the A1200 up to keep some air flowing to the CPU. Eventually put it all in a tower with a second hand PowerUP card from Phase 5, a downgrade on the 68k side (25MHz 680LC40, amazing the difference 15MHz made in them days) but the 603e 160MHz was useful for playing MP3s and Quake.

Part of me remembers it being happy days saving all my paper round money for that 20MB hard disk that cost me £199, other parts just think, I've just paid £6 for a 16GB SD Card! :)

Anyway I digress very badly, choice is good, and Windows Phone is a good product, like like iOS and Android are, I just prefer Windows Phone at the moment.

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Anonymous Coward

"Some of us stuck with Amiga computers despite Commodore dying off and the hardware falling behind"

Yeah, I did, until Holger Kruse started putting backdoors and code to wipe your hard drive into the Miami and Miami Pro TCP stack. He couldn't see what could possibly go wrong, and the remaining user base trotted out "if you have a problem with this, then you're obviously a pirate". I wasn't, I owned multiple licenses for the damned thing.

That was the last straw, when the pond is that small, if the remaining developers and the largest proportion of the userbase are fucking arseholes, it's time to bail.

So my A4000 with a Cyberstorm 68060 card and SCSI controller, Picasso IV and ethernet card became a rather esoteric Linux box for a while. When I could afford it, I bought a PC, slapped Slackware on it- which made kernel builds a lot less tedious.

Sorry, somewhat OT, but it was a rant that I have been nursing for a bit.

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Anonymous Coward

Don't count them out yet

Look at Apple, from the brink of bankruptcy to the size they are today

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Facepalm

Re: Don't count them out yet

Microsoft Stepped in to save them too... I'm seeing a pattern here.

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Anonymous Coward

Re: Don't count them out yet

Yes, they bought Apple stock and then, in true Ballmer style sold it just as APPL took off. Think what $150m of stock in 1997 would be worth now.

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Re: Don't count them out yet

Uh, no. Microsoft did NOT bail out Apple. NOR did they give Apple money by buying stock out of the goodness of their heart or in order to make sure the government wouldn't think they were a monopoly.

Microsoft's $150 Million stock investment was the result of a settlement of a lawsuit. In fact, the investment was just an initial payment for other "substantial balancing payments" that would be spread out over then next few years, then Apple CFO Fred Anderson said at the time.

The exact amount of the settlement is still unknown. Estimates range from $500 million to more than $1 billion.

What was this legal action that gave Apple so much leverage over Redmond? It was the Apple Computer v. San Francisco Canyon Co. lawsuit.

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Happy

Simple math

AAPL is up 200x since 1997, so that would be $30 billion or more than 10% of Microsoft's market capitalization.

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Anonymous Coward

HTML is the way forward - kill the web

Obviously with plug-ins banned HTML becomes like a puny web orphan.

Removal of all tablet add-ons was simply a way to force us suckers into buying into apps.

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Nice read. There is another dimension to this whole debate, as I was reading on another site that a recent survey shows that 22% of android user are willing to dump their platform in favor of Apple, it clearly shows that in the longer run if this trend continues it will mean trouble for Android.

I have owned several high end droids over the years (including my current SGS III, previous droids include SGSII/Sensation etc), and not one of them have been reliable, stable or able to provide consistent performance. Almost every one of these droids suffered from unexplainable reboots, slow downs, crashes, hang ups etc. (and I only use about half a dozen apps). To top this off, WP on Lumia 800 with its ancient SoC feels snappier compared to most top end droids.

So, there is surely space available for another ecosystem, especially since, WP is whole lot more stable, and efficient OS IMHO.

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Cyanogen

I have a ZTE Blade which was subject to all the faults you mention. It used Orange's flavour of Android 2.1. I suspect that many of the Mobile operators' Android versions are similarly low quality. Since I installed Cyanogen Mod 7.1 (using Android 2.3), all these problems have gone away except for the operating system going kaput when the battery runs down: I get round this by occasionally backing up the system using ROM Manager & (after installing App Backup & Restore) set it to automatically backup (to my sdcard) any new/modified apps. However, I suspect that very few users will install another ROM let alone do backups.

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Re: Cyanogen

So as has been the case since time immemorial, the operators are ****ing up perfectly good phones with their pointless and awful additions.

I genuinely think that the best thing Apple did to the iPhone was telling the operators they were not allowed to ruin customise it.

Almost every complaint I've had and heard of about Symbian, Windows Mobile and Android was "Why the hell can't I delete this useless <insert name here>?"

When will the operators learn?

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WTF?

How is it difficult to update WP contacts on your PC? If you have a hotmail account, it takes like 2 seconds, 1 to open a hotmail browser window, another to switch to contacts.

Not tried a non-hotmail account, but surely its just a matter of logging in to Microsoft with a non-hotmail account.

WP8 looks like its going to cure a lot of the issues with WP7, but the biggest problem is always going to be the whole app eco-system. If the whole sharing of kernel between Windows8, Tablet, xbox and phone works, WP8 will quickly start to catch Android/iOS on app development, and WP8 stands a chance of being a 3rd eco-system candidate. If not, i'd imagine Microsoft will drop WP in a couple of years.

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Applications

I have wondered about apps myself - I have probably a dozen paid for apps, but I probably use the free ones more. Also having reinstalled my Galaxy S a number of times, I dont always put the same apps back - there are functions I need but not specific apps.

Oddly the major barrier to me changing these days would be does the phone support the 2-3 games that my kids play on the phone, and that could be addressed simply be keeping the old handset and letting them play with that.

The other thing that's suprised me so far is that nobody seems to have considered an "Android Emulator" or compatability layer, you can run one on a PC for development purposes so why couldn't a Win Phone run one locally and allow access to an Android App library. All the code is public domain after all (and it would be an entertaining inversion of WINE). If the app library was that important I can't see this being that hard to do.

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Re: Applications

I think that's a really bad idea, sadly.

There are bound to be issues with the VM and apps will crash. And Win8 will get the blame for that, not the app or Android. Even though Android apps are notoriously crashy anyway.

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Re: Applications

For WP7, at least, the much stricter sandboxing present on WP7 coupled with the requirement that all applications were in .NET code would have pretty much ruled out an Android emulator type app. That might change to some degree in WP8 (though I suspect the sandboxing will still be too strict) but only the elite few who've been granted access to the SDK could know for sure. At least for now.

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Happy

I really liked the hardware on the Lumia 800 once they'd sorted out the battery life problems but I found I just couldn't get on with Windows Phone as an OS. I moved to Android as an alternative, having never used it before and haven't looked back.

That isn't to say IOS or Windows Phone OS aren't any good - I just enjoy the freedom of Android not being tied to an iTunes or Zune application to get stuff on the phone :)

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Other phone companies...

It's easy to forget that Nokia aren't the only manufacturer making Windows 8 phones... Samsung are keeping a toe in the water... not sure who else because all news is about Nokia.

You mention developers not wanting to develop for more than one platform... just wondering how hard it is to reuse code from Windows 8 RT to Windows 8 phone, or even Win8 x86? This question might be more relevant if/when Win8 RT has some market share, and obviously things designed for a tablet don't necessarily work well on a phone...

If Microsoft could really pitch this as a great corporate phone OS with good Office etc integration, tempered by some XBOX fun and games, then maybe it could work out.

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Re: Other phone companies...

not sure who else because all news is about Nokia.

HTC, ZTE and Lenovo have confirmed that they'll be producing WP8 phones.

Quality remains the question.

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Re: Other phone companies...

Huawei are also confirming at least one WP8 handset.

I'm not quite certain who it is that's downvoting raw verifiable information given in answer to a query but it does make one wonder (even more) at the kind of educationally subnormal individual on the internet these days.

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Nice considred article (and agree to disagree over Contacts)

Overall a good interesting and balanced article... this is a rapidly evolving market and I'm pretty sure there is indeed room for 3 large players. Windows Phone is well liked by those who use it, so while the installed base is certainly smaller than Microsoft or Handset vendors would like, they are steadily building a solid platform with several million happy users prepared to evangelise the product... with new competitive W8 hardware, they just need to gain more attention from the phone sales reps and operators to start to see some significant market share gains.

on which note, I'd agree with Mike Taylor's post above - in my experience contact linking is one of the big plus+ points of the 'People Hub' approach of Windows Phone.I really like the way it links together your contact info different data sources (Facebook, Exchange etc.) and presents them all under the one contact - perfect.

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Android dithering?

How exactly is Android dithering? NFC, taking pictures while recording video, first with dual-core and quad-core CPUs, phones with HD screens from 3.2" up to 5.5" and that's just what I can recall quickly. I'm not saying these are unique to Android but they're being pushed by it a lot. Dithering is releasing a new 'magical' phone with a bigger screen, upgraded CPU (still behind others) and expecting the world to go nuts.

I'm all for putting forward a case that Duplo 8 has a chance but after seeing that bit in the heading I wasn't really interested in the rest of the article. I'm still surprised that they're being given such an easy ride after killing future updates to Duplo 7 / 7.5 beyond a few ported features to 7.8.

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