back to article New York Police scrap 36,000 Windows smartphones

The New York Police Department will scrap 36,000 smartphones, thanks to a monumental purchasing cock-up by a billionaire's daughter. The city spent millions on the phones back in October 2016 as part of its drive to bring the police force into the 21st century. And the woman behind the purchase – Deputy Commissioner for …

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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So in reality it is Bill Bratton fault for not doing his job, instead of stopping her, he chose to avoid a situation that he would have found difficult and let her do as she wished.

    1. DougS Silver badge

      So not only is she incompetent at her job, but apparently she's difficult to get along with if she doesn't get her way so people give in to her rather than fight her when they know she's making a mistake? That sounds like a winning combination...why does she still have that job??

      1. Pascal

        Still...

        You let an underling decide on a technology / supplier / etc. on a multi-million deal because she's difficult to get along with?

        Honestly her boss is as much to blame as she is... More, probably.

      2. ST Silver badge
        Devil

        temper tantrum throwing twit

        > So not only is she incompetent at her job, but apparently she's difficult to get along with if she doesn't get her way [ ... ]

        These two things usually go together: incompetent fool who throws a tantrum if things don't go their way.

        Dear Ms. Tisch:

        Now would be a good time to update your Résumé.

        1. DougS Silver badge
          Thumb Up

          And here's how this entry will look on her resume

          Given sole authority and supervision for multi-million dollar purchase of tens of thousands of smartphones a major pillar of New York City's overall drive to bring the NYPD into the 21st century. Integrated with existing Windows based systems via over a dozen bespoke apps. Based on departmental evaluation of the overall success of this project, immediate plans were made for another major smartphone purchase.

          Its all in how you write it...it'll sound like a success to anyone who reads it so long as they don't google her :)

          1. Alan Brown Silver badge

            Re: And here's how this entry will look on her resume

            "Its all in how you write it...it'll sound like a success to anyone who reads it so long as they don't google her :)"

            And by using "reputation management services" she'll bury the bad news so deep that google searches won't show the clusterfuck unless you already knew of it.

            I know of several such cases and the people involved have effectively gotten away with it scott-free.

            1. bombastic bob Silver badge
              Devil

              Re: And here's how this entry will look on her resume

              it's a corollary of the 'Peter Principle'

        2. Fatman Silver badge

          Re: temper tantrum throwing twit

          <quote>Dear Ms. Tisch:

          Now would be a good time to update your Résumé clear out your desk.</quote>

          There

          FTFY!!!!

      3. the Jim bloke Silver badge

        Google Vice President of Diversity...

        You have a challenger for your job.

      4. ps2os2

        Because she is the daughter of a billionaire, that is why.

        Bloomberg did a good job for NYC. The powers that be decided hey if one billionaire can do a good job, why can't another?

        This indeed what happens when you let rich people who don't have any concept of the job try to do a job that they are incapable of doing.

        Bloomberg did it right and got the best people, he would never have allowed her in the job in the first place.

        There is a term for these types of people, but it is lost in short term memory.

        1. Mr Sceptical
          Thumb Down

          Inherited wealth doesn't prove a thing...

          Correct me if I'm wrong but she's the offspring of a billionaire? In which case, unless she's also made her personal $1,000,000,000 fortune, then she's no more brilliant than the office junior in my book.

          Unless everyone thinks Bernie Ecclestone's daughters are also world class dealer makers? (clue: they're not).

          If you can't walk the walk, don't talk the talk.

          Perhaps her dad can foot the bill and save NYPD blowing all the taxpayers cash?

          No, what can one do with 36,000 lightly used smartphones?

          1. hapticz

            Re: Inherited wealth doesn't prove a thing...

            Central Park Lake event for the kids. See how many skips you can get on the first throw!

            Then a 'fishing event', complete with long handled crab nets to retrieve as many as you can, The one with the most catches, gets a year of free hotdogs.

        2. Fatman Silver badge
          Joke

          RE: "Rich People"

          <quote>This indeed what happens when you let rich people who don't have any concept of the job try to do a job that they are incapable of doing.</quote>

          You would not be commenting on POTUS, now would you????

        3. Alan Brown Silver badge

          "Bloomberg did a good job for NYC."

          Bloomberg was proven competent before he got the NYC gig.

          The children of competent people are not necessarily competent themselves.

          This is particularly true with the children of the rich, who simply assume that they deserve to be rich.

          You also see this kind of thing with people who work for the rich and assume that they should be treated better by society because they rub up to money and respect that they haven't earned for themselves.

          Nepotism/Cronyism is a common human failing and one of the many forms of corruption "we don't talk about" unless it's done by 3rd world dictatorships.

          1. P. Lee Silver badge

            >This is particularly true with the children of the rich, who simply assume that they deserve to be rich.

            That is a bit of an assumption in itself. If you learn by observing those around you and being taught by those around you, then those around successful people are more likely to be successful than those with no teachers.

            It is also possible that they got the 36,000 windows phones for almost nothing due to their unpopularity and near eol status, and she's being made into a news story for click-bait or she's being set up by someone who wants her job. Maybe there was no money for a decent Android or iOS equivalent and it was that or nothing.

            Or the general thrust of the story may be true. There are too many unknowns to make a proper assessment.

        4. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Bloomberg did a good job for NYC.

          Bloomberg did a good job **ON** NYC. There, FTFY.

      5. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Nobody gets fired for buying Microsoft..

        Those days are long gone, you now stand a very good chance of getting fired if you buy Microsoft (given how their products pretty much universally suck).

        Also "Windows-based phones held just three percent of the market"

        Windows phones have never had 3% of the market, 1% and under (so likely 0.3%), or perhaps this is the US market figure or something. Whatever the reason, 3% is painting a very generous position for Windows mobile, it would have loved to have a whopping 3%.

        1. RyokuMas Silver badge
          Paris Hilton

          Re: Nobody gets fired for buying Microsoft..

          "Windows phones have never had 3% of the market"

          Believe it or not, it did actually happen.

          Unless someone didn't check their facts...

          1. DRue2514

            Re: Nobody gets fired for buying Microsoft..

            It probably reached that 3% just after someone bought 36,000 of them.

        2. kms

          Re: Nobody gets fired for buying Microsoft..

          The original saying was, if I recall: Nobody ever go fired for buying IBM - But maybe they should have been.

          1. aqk
            Big Brother

            Re: Nobody gets fired for buying IBM..

            You're right on that one.

            So many times I would recommend a non-IBM piece of software or hardware, whereupon IBM-blue suits would walk in, not even look at me, and take the head of a dept or a VP out to lunch, or (better) on a junket to Las Vegas.

            And strangely a few days/weeks later, we went with the inferior IBM product.

      6. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        After this, it will be difficult to justify allowing her to keep that job, which is likely why the former Police Commissioner let her have her way. He rightly suspected it would all go sideways. He was right.

      7. steviebuk Silver badge

        We all know it's probably because of who she knows and being the daughter of a billionaire. Upset for good reason, you'll probably end up being the one that gets fired.

        Bad but probably true.

  2. m0rt Silver badge

    NYPD Blue screen of death.

    Hill Street Blue screen of death.

    Sorry.

    Not.

    1. montyburns56

      Rookie Blue the IT budget on some crappy phones.

  3. Oh Homer
    Windows

    "I don't care if you're Jesus fucking Christ"

    Yup, definitely NYPD :)

    1. Chris G Silver badge

      Re: "I don't care if you're Jesus fucking Christ"

      "I don't care what yer fucking name is, yer not dragging that fucking cross through my precinct."

      1. Toni the terrible

        Re: "I don't care if you're Jesus fucking Christ"

        Hell's Kitchen maybe?

  4. Bob Vistakin
    Facepalm

    These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

    I'm sure It's Been Mentioned somewhere a similar phrase was used in different times, relating to a different company.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

      Got pretty much fired for daring to insist in an important meeting that a project should be done with linux/php instead of Windows Server/ASP that the highly paid 'systems architecture' had decided on. When a shuffle meant he became my direct boss, I was straight out the door.

      18 months later they ditched ASP and started the project from scratch using the linux/php route like the other financial institutions.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

        "18 months later they ditched ASP and started the project from scratch "

        And your former direct boss?

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

          @Alan Brown: Well obviously he stayed on getting a huge pay rise and later a fortune in shares when the company got brought out before moving on by his own choosing.

    2. big_D Silver badge

      Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

      The only positive on buying the Windows Phones was that the 640XL was about a fifth of the price of an iPhone. With discounts, probably more. Of course, she could have probably got equivalent Androids for a similar price.

      1. fedoraman

        Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

        And it has a really good battery life!

      2. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

        "The only positive on buying the Windows Phones was that the 640XL was about a fifth of the price of an iPhone."

        That and also once updated to Windows 10, it continues to get security patches till June 2019. Sadly there aren't too many Android vendors that push security patches for years after the phone comes out.

    3. Ilgaz

      Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

      Well, IBM did a marvelous job of supporting & updating a clearly failed OS/2.

      1. ROC

        Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

        Actually, as I recall from info disclosed during the early 2000's US anti-trust trial of Microsoft, they extorted IBM to do that by threatening to withhold licensing for Windows 95 from the Thinkpads and other IBM PC's if OS/2 was not effectively abandoned.

        Interestingly, although IBM caved, one can still buy the successor product, when IBM sold off the rights to eComStation:

        https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/EComStation

        1. jake Silver badge

          Re: These days, you always get fired for choosing microsoft

          IBM still holds the rights. eComStation and newcomer ArcaNoae license it from IBM. I have contracts using both in odd corners. Recommended.

  5. jake Silver badge

    Brilliant.

    Breathtakingly bloody brilliant.

    Anyone wonder why she's not working for the family firm?

    1. ps2os2

      Re: Brilliant.

      They probably know she is incompetent and wouldn't let her work there.

  6. Herby Silver badge

    Why does she still have that job??

    The answer to this is obvious: She is a civil servant, and they have (union) jobs for life at exorbitant pay rates. Also no higher-up is willing to take the hit for hiring her in the first place.

    Life goes on. So does politics.

    Now all of this begs the question, can someone who is very enterprising re-purpose these "surplus" phones to be something modern (an Android port?)? You might be able to get them pretty cheaply!

    1. Youngone Silver badge

      Re: Why does she still have that job??

      @ Herby

      I'm sure the civil servant part is true, but it looks like this is an old fashioned case of jobs for the boys (or girls in this case).

      She is the offspring of an extremely wealthy and well-connected family, and friends with the Mayor's daughter. Looks like business as usual to me.

      1. Chris G Silver badge

        Re: Why does she still have that job??

        @ Youngone

        Yeah, Tammany Hall may have gone in the '60s but much of New York politics is still done the same way.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Why does she still have that job??

          And I thought that was the preserve of Chicago.

          1. ps2os2

            Re: Why does she still have that job??

            The old Daley days are long gone and sure there are some hangers on. But, for the most part, the old timers are retired (or left).

      2. kitekrazy

        Re: Why does she still have that job??

        She might even get promoted.

    2. Unclezip

      Re: Why does she still have that job??

      Nah - they're covered in cop cooties.

    3. MrRtd

      Re: Why does she still have that job??

      In her case yes she is obviously overpaid. But otherwise most civil servants get paid a livable fair wage (at least where I live in Canada). Oh and yes even with a union if you fuck up enough you do get fired. The union just makes sure there is just cause and treated fairly. But I suppose you think big bad unions are so unfair protecting their workers from the whims of managers and negotiating better deals for them than those workers would get otherwise.

      1. Alan Brown Silver badge

        Re: Why does she still have that job??

        "The union just makes sure there is just cause and treated fairly."

        If there _is_ just cause, most unions(*) will say as much and refuse to support the worker's case. It's not in their interests to damage the employer.

        (*) Most unions are well under the radar and have good relations with their employers. Many have never had industrial action in their entire existence. The ones you read about are either up against asshole management or has assholes leading the union. It's more usually the former than the latter, however once the former take hold of a company, the latter can end up with a foothold in the union.

    4. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Devil

      Re: Why does she still have that job??

      perhaps for the same reason THIS person still has HER job:

      https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Julie_Larson-Green

      inventor of "The Metro" "The Ribbon" and "one windows, everywhere"

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