back to article Windows Phone dives into irrelevant-like-BlackBerry territory

BlackBerry and Microsoft have continued their tumble down the mobile operating system market share charts, clocking in at just 0.1 per cent and 0.6 per cent respectively. Microsoft's fallen especially hard: analyst firm Gartner had it selling 8.2 million phones for 2015's second quarter, for 2.5 per cent market share. The …

  1. DrXym Silver badge

    Blackberry has gone with Android already

    The Priv runs Android and people seem very positive about the job they've done customising it. The hardware was criticized for getting very hot though.

    1. The Quiet One

      Re: Blackberry has gone with Android already

      The Priv is an excellent phone. My Wife has one after owning 3 successive BB Bolds and she could not be happier.

      Windows phone is underrated as a business device. My Lumia 735 is the best work phone i have had, email managment is better than my old BB Torch (and that was excellent). The reason it has died a death is the poor app store, unfortantely. If you dont care about games or frivilous apps WinPho is pretty damn good.

      1. GlenP Silver badge

        Re: Blackberry has gone with Android already

        I agree about WinPho, as a business tool it's very good. Shame my directors insist on Apple!

        I finally gave up on WinPho for my personal phone and went over to Android simply due to the apps. The ones that are there are often older, badly maintained, versions of the ones available on the mainstream (and that included at the time the MS Office apps). I don't blame the developers, in many cases it's just not worth their while for the limited market.

        1. AMBxx Silver badge

          The quietOne

          Sounds strangely like our household. I'm happy with my 950XL, my wife on a BB Passport (not Android though).

          Looks like Apple need to innovate beyond minor revisions. MS just need to make the OS more reliable.

          No idea what BB need to do!

          1. Anonymous Coward

            Re: The quietOne

            No idea what BB need to do!

            Declare bankruptcy?

          2. Mage Silver badge

            Re: Apple need to innovate

            The only useful innovations were bought in at the start, Multitouch and the GUI from Fingerworks.

            Innovations like no SD card, glued in battery, cut down SIM and changing the dock are not consumer friendly.

            Proposed future "enhancements" such as no 3.5mm jack socket or no physical SIM are to suit Apple, not consumers.

            They tried doing a watch that needs an iPhone (many others don't need a phone or work with any BT device).

            Unless there is some successful class of consumer product where is the Apple innovation possible? Replacing Mac OS and Mac Air with an iOS product that has a keyboard and stylus? Oh they did already.

          3. W. Anderson

            Re: The quietOne

            The statement that " .... MS JUST need to make the OS more reliable. " is stupid on it's face, because even if Microsoft improved Mobile 10 OS reliability 200%, the needle on the company's 0.6% USA and globql morketshare is unlikely to make any difference what-so-ever given Apple iOS and Android approximate combined 97% marketshare dominance.

            The levels of denial of fact, mental dysfunction and oblivion of though amoung Microsoft faithful seem to know no bounds.

        2. 0laf Silver badge

          Re: Blackberry has gone with Android already

          I too was a WinPho user until lack of compatibility with apps and websites made me jump to Apple.

          I still think the Metro interface was the best of any mobile phone platform especially if you have sausage fingers. However with the Apple everything just works and I was surprised just how much control you have over the access apps have to data and bits of your phone. I'd like more but it's much better than anything else I've had.

          We also have WinPho at work however this is under review because again we no longer trust that the platform has a future and we don't want to be left hanging. Already we're being forced onto WinPho 10 because all 8.1 devices have been withdrawn. Many issues with the WinPho as well, no idea why Ms didn't go all out to make them the enterprise mobile device of choice. Rather they did as much as possible to consumerise them and make them difficult to work for business.

          Still convinced Nedalla is a Google insider gleefully shooting MS in the foot as often as possible.

      2. Jess

        Re: The reason it has died a death

        I would think the way Microsoft bribed Nokia to kill Symbian didn't help. All the Nokia Symbian users I knew are now either Android users or still clinging on.

        However moving that chunk of the market from Symbian (no royalties) to Android (royalties) proved that the outcome was win-win.

        Win winning would have been a win. All those royalties were a win.

        1. W Donelson

          Re: The reason it has died a death

          Symbian was utter crap. As a Nokia Symbian developer, we begged Nokia to move out of the 1990s and get a real OS but they didn't. MS didn't have to bribe anyone. Symbian was dead for years before MS stepped in

          1. Mage Silver badge

            Re: The reason it has died a death

            Symbian 60 was poorer than other OSes Nokia had. They went bad around 2002 / 2003 killing off S80 / Crystal. Then BUYING Trolltech rather than just paying them for an S60 GUI replacement was doomed.

            Nokia must have killed off 3 to 6 better alternatives than S60 for GUI before adopting Win Phone.

            Nokia knew the phone handset business was doomed. They got a good deal selling it yet keeping name and all IP. Nokia still exist and have eaten Motorola and Siemens Telco Infrastructure companies..

      3. xyz

        Re: Blackberry has gone with Android already

        I love my Lumia 925 but need to upgrade my phone and contract. Tried buying a new winPho and/or changing my contract yesterday, but between MS's rubbish phone site, my fear of win 10 (and love of win pho 8.1) and the poor winpho offer from mobile providers, I'm just going to buy a new role of tape to hold my Lumia's case together and pray to God that one day MS stops screwing the pooch.

        1. Belardi16

          Re: Blackberry has gone with Android already

          You can get a very good Android phone, then download a free WindowsPhone UI that is more flexible and customizable than the actual MS OS.

        2. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Blackberry has gone with Android already

          Plenty of new/excellent condition Lumia phones on ebay and amazon

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    As a dev who has created WinPho, BB, iOs and Android apps, may I also add that developing a WinPho app is a very expensive and time consuming process thanks to very poor legacy support (think WinPho 8/8.1/10 and a vast array of non compatible Visual Studio tools and libraries all in the 40GB range and none nicely co-existing with each other #nightmare).

  3. djstardust Silver badge


    Are self destructing.

    Nowadays there is hardly a single product they develop correctly, and any business they take over generally dies a slow painful death.

    I had a Windows phone in 2005 and it was terrible. They have chopped and changed the platform with no legacy support for years now and that just pisses customers off.

    Open Office formats are blossoming and people are moving off Windows 10 in droves.

    The only people that don't see this are Microsoft.

    1. serendipity

      Re: Microsoft


      Are self destructing."

      Well you might well be right but then again the haters have been predicting (hoping!) this would happen for twenty years or more.

      You say Open Office formats are blossoming. In business I come across Office Open XML formats everywhere, not so much Open Office formats. Personally, I would miss modern versions of MS Office. The alternative seems to be use Open/Libre Office and use a UI from the 90's or use a cut down web based product like Google Docs. I don't find either prospect particularly appealing :(

      1. Zakhar

        Re: Microsoft

        We, the "haters", don't need M$ to die.

        We just need it to abandon its business model of extortion: forcing down your throat an O.S. we don't want to use, each time your buy a PC.

        From the day they'll drop this business model, I promise you we will stop "hating" and become totally indifferent to whatever crap they are doing.

        But unfortunately, I fear this day is not any time soon, extortion will still be there for some time, and on top of that subscription for the fanboys! Why should they stop pressing the juice out of their customers, anyway they can do anything stupid you will always buy...

      2. fung0

        Re: Microsoft

        serendipity: " The alternative seems to be use Open/Libre Office and use a UI from the 90's..."

        What's wrong with the UI from the 90s? At least it was designed with usability as the primary goal, as opposed to uniqueness and lock-in. Not even Microsoft's internal testers liked the Ribbon...

        1. bombastic bob Silver badge

          Re: Microsoft

          "What's wrong with the UI from the 90s? "

          EXACTLY! These "new, shiny" addicts need to take a look at more important things FIRST, like whether they're more productive or not as a result of the "new, shiny", or whether "new, shiny" is actually CUMBERSOME and BUTT-UGLY, but they're telling the rest of us we're stone-age neanderthals for liking "the old way".

          If I'm going to have to change, it will be to something running Mate or Cinnamon. Or Android. Or iOS. etc.

      3. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

        Re: Microsoft

        "The alternative seems to be use Open/Libre Office and use a UI from the 90's"

        Just because you think it looks like it's from the 1990's doesn't mean there's anything wrong with it.

        I use both, and personally find MSOffice too cluttered in the menu bar stakes and the flat UI makes it harder to find stuff IMO. Now, I won't say that everything about 1990's GUIs are great or that all changes since were poor, but I often think that "refreshing" a GUI is not always a step forward, especially when it's not for proven usability improvements but just because marketing think it's time for a brand "refresh".

        MS have cut down the opportunity for user to customise their desktop easily to wallpaper, colour scheme and sound effects only. It's still "flat".

  4. Belardi16


    I was in a big-box store, where for years they had several brands of phones by different carriers in one area. Last week, half of the display models were empty, everything else was Samsung or iPhone.


  5. Dexter

    I have a Windows Phone for work, and I have to say it's pretty good.

    Very few apps, but as a work/email/web browser/sat nav/document viewer it is very good.

    Good camera, too.

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not surprising that...

    ...Blackberry and Windows sales are very similar; both are targeted at the business sector. I've been working very closely with MS on Windows Phone for the past two years and it is being developed, and targeted, as a Blackberry replacement, not for the personal market. They are particularly looking at government and local government where adherence to CESG recommendations is pretty much a must-have and budgets are tight.

    Android is a non-starter from the security perspective (with the exception of Knox), Apple hardware is expensive, and there is still no confidence in RML's capacity to survive. Windows Phone backed by InTune gives a relatively low-cost, CESG-compliant, secure business environment, and is likely to make inroads into the business market at Blackberry's expense, for some time to come amongst those businesses who value their corporate and customer data.

    1. AMBxx Silver badge

      Re: Not surprising that...

      I agree with everything you say. However, it doesn't appear to be happening. I visit a lot of different customers in different segments (public and private sector). Very rare for me to see anything other than Android or Apple.

      I often travel by train to London. 5 years ago, it was common to see people with 2 phones - a work BB and a personal Android. Can't remember the last time I saw a BB other than my wife's.

      Shame really. Android is horrid.

    2. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

      Re: Not surprising that...

      Windows sales are targeted at the business sector?

      You must be joking right?

      Here in the business sector, we chose Apple with grinding teeth because it was the only one that offered updates, was sure to exist next year, was usable by the wandering dudes and also manageable once you buy the required Mobile Device Management solution, in this case AirWatch. (Microsoft "offered" its MDM solution too, I got a bit of a headache when they tried to weasel the item through hidden on an itemized bill... )

      BlackBerry was on the list briefly, and a proposal for WinPho elicited some chuckles.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Not surprising that...

        Windows phones are seen as "business friendly" as they support Exchange out of the box and are generally cheap for a reasonably robust phone that can do the basics including MDM. As long as your business isn't planning on deploying any apps from third parties for important business functions.

        From an end-user perspective, I haven't seen a lot of love for them - most of our staff list a work and personal number in preference to carrying a Windows phone around out of hours...

        1. Vote_for_Pedro

          Re: Not surprising that...

          ^This. You've just described my situation. 2 weeks ago I gave up on my windows phone from work and picked up my first personal cell phone in more than 7 years. Had the windows phone for about 1.5 years and it hit a point with dropped calls (my new phone is with the same company and I don't have any issues) and lack of apps that I couldn't take it any more. My new personal line is now in my company's directory.

          Those that have commented on how good the windows phones is for work, I'm glad it is working for them. I agree it's a solid email device but I need more than that from an overall "life" perspective. I wonder if they've done any age group and lifestyle research when they look at who's got which phones, for what purpose, if their preference is to "separate work and personal life" by having two phones or not, etc. If my company would go back to offering an email app on BYOD, I'd be more than happy to add it. Or, they could just go back to the Samsungs we had for about a year.

        2. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

          Re: Not surprising that...

          "Windows phones are seen as "business friendly" as they support Exchange out of the box "

          So did my old Galaxy S2 and my current Galaxy S5.

    3. LDS Silver badge

      Re: Not surprising that...

      No, actually Windows Phone was not targeted at the business sector. First iterations utterly lacked business features like VPN support. Again, MS was aiming for the same consumer market of Android and Apple, because money are in walled stores, aren't they?

      It turned out to be a good business OS for its clean design, Exchange integration, and Office availability. And for a while, it had a stream of updates. Then came Nadella...

      If Elop was a Trojan Horse, what is Nadella? The Grim Reaper??

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Not surprising that...

        I totally agree that Windows Phone was not originally targeted at the business sector, but the work I have been doing with MS has been precisely around the retargeting; hence Windows Phone 8.1 and above now supports always-on VPN, controlled by InTune, and many more features regarded as essential to a security-conscious/regulatory driven business user, where the business phone is for business and nothing else.

        Windows Phone needed app support to have a chance of breaking into the personal market. When the app support didn't come, for the reasons outlined elsewhere in this thread, MS decided to position themselves as a Blackberry replacement that offered more functionality than BB at a lower cost per user.

        1. LDS Silver badge

          Re: Not surprising that...

          Still you don't give a reason for business to trust you, when you fire and dismiss the whole personnel and products of a company business you acquired for about 8bn. If you can't trust in your own products, why someone else should? Do they really believe a company in troubled waters and with a tarnished brand, even more than Nokia, like HP could help them?

          Nadella looks to lack basic CEO capabilities, and it's still a mystery for me how he got the role.

          I'm quite afraid one day MS will buy HP, and the write it off one year later...

      2. fung0

        Re: Not surprising that...

        LDS: "If Elop was a Trojan Horse, what is Nadella? The Grim Reaper??"

        The Fourth Horseman of the Apocalypse.

    4. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: Not surprising that...

      "...Blackberry and Windows sales are very similar; both are targeted at the business sector. I've been working very closely with MS on Windows Phone for the past two years and it is being developed, and targeted, as a Blackberry replacement, not for the personal market."

      You seem to know more about the inside workings of MS than their own marketing and PR flacks. Did you not see the hugely optimistic sales targets for WinPho10? Were Marketing and PR lying or had information simply been withheld from them to allow for "plausible denyability"

  7. Destroy All Monsters Silver badge

    A war with China will put an end to these bourgeois concerns!

    The female presidential candidate will put some starch into your collars, peons!

    Then BlackBerry will do a comeback - 100% made in Canada! Non-evil, free of conflict materials and Intellectual Property friendly.

    1. bombastic bob Silver badge

      Re: A war with China will put an end to these bourgeois concerns!

      "The female presidential candidate will put some starch into your collars, peons!"

      Yes, after Micro-shaft donates a bozillian dollars to the 'Clinstone Foundation' she'll be compelled to make sure that gummint contracts for "Micro-shaft Phone" devices be universally made throughout the entire federal system, by MANDATE of course, as a political payback for the corrupt contributions to her "foundation"... thus saving Micro-shaft's bacon.

      Predictable, yeah. Let's not feed "that pig" (well, either ONE for that matter).

      GO TRUMP! (/me ducks)

  8. Tim Jenkins

    In this bit of the real world

    Yesterdays 'Guest' DHCP, which is essentially a record of tourist visitor devices, showed 41 'droids, 37 iPhonze* and 6 Winthings, for a 49 / 44 / 7 % breakdown. I think I saw a Blackberry appear on there once...

    *probably a bit inflated by the Japanese student group who appeared to own matching sets of airs, phones, pads and pods. There's probably also a skew towards Apple owners because we charge for admission ; )

  9. J J Carter Silver badge

    Just wait until the Surface Phone

    Coming soon...(tm)

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Just wait until the Surface Phone

      "Coming soon...(tm)"

      Are you ?

    2. hplasm Silver badge

      Re: Just wait until the Surface Phone

      Is that the other can on the end of the tramp's string? Aha...

  10. Danny 5

    Not surprized at all

    I'm one of the sufferers of Windows 10 mobile and they've managed to completely alienate me. I've been a huge fan of the Lumia series, had the 900 and the 1020, which i absolutely loved, but my current 950 is a piece of crap. Windows 10 mobile is crap and the device is generic and cheap. I'm never getting a windows phone again and I'm not the only one. I've gone from promoting the devices to completely switching of the brand. I'm waiting for the Android based Nokia and then it's sayonara Microsoft.

    Their arrogance is their downfall.

    1. Sandtitz Silver badge

      Re: Not surprized at all

      "my current 950 is a piece of crap. Windows 10 mobile is crap and the device is generic and cheap."

      I think almost all phones these days are generic. How does the crappiness of the OS manifest itself?

      Missus has a Lumia 640 which was upgraded from 8.1 to 10 and she hasn't complained about the changes in UI. Daughter has a cheapo Huawei (€100 or so) and I expect the much older 640 to still get OS updates once Huawei decides to ditch support.

    2. bombastic bob Silver badge
      Black Helicopters

      Re: Not surprized at all

      I've only got a cheap "dumb" Nokia that has whatever non-smart OS came with it. it's a PHONE. works for me.

  11. Paul 195

    I loved my Winphone 8.1 (Nokia 820) till I finally broke it last week. Now I have an android just like everyone else because there seems little point in reinvesting in a dying ecosystem. But for everyday tasks it seems far behind the metro interface. The keyboard is inferior, and live tiles beat the clunky widget/icon paradigm by packing more information and functionality into a smaller amount of space. Nearly all lumias combined sd card, wireless charging and removable battery. Almost impossible to find that combination in Android hardware and it will cost you a fortune.

  12. Belardi16

    For those who like the WinPhone Metro UI, there is an easy solution when you go Android... since WinPhone is dying. I used to use this myself back in the Android 2.x days with my first Samsung Galaxy S phone (before there was a 2, 3, 4, etc).

    WP Launcher :

    Once Android 4 came out, I stopped using it myself for my own needs. But have recommended it for others or small children because of how its user customized options - beyond what an actual WP can do.

    The UI screen rotates with the phone (cool - wish Android would do that on the main screen) is an option... and its slick. And that feature is 5+ years old. Even some of my WinPhone friends are asking me advice to replacement phones.

    In general, MS should have taken over the Phone market with such phones that share<>connect whatever so much with the PC. But with Windows 8~10 so hated and the inability up upgrade WinPhone 7 devices to 8, that burned A LOT of people... who wanted to touch it?

  13. Christian Berger Silver badge

    We live in a rather paradoxical situation

    All the competitors are trying to bring out exactly the same product, however people are desperately screaming for an alternative.

    There would be an alternative for a simple portable computer. Something like a blank pocket PC where you can install just about any operating system you want. A place where you can experiment with new ideas on how such devices should work. Or perhaps a simple device just booting your Linux kernel and dropping you into a framebuffer shell, with some shell scripts to activate your wireless connection or get the device into suspend.

    However there's no space left for yet another "Facebook"-Machine. The swiping idiots market has been thoroughly grazed by Android and iOS.

    1. John Brown (no body) Silver badge

      Re: We live in a rather paradoxical situation

      "However there's no space left for yet another "Facebook"-Machine. The swiping idiots market has been thoroughly grazed by Android and iOS."

      In the early days of home computers, selling a few thousand was enough and lots of people did it with different and cometig platforms. Later, it was 10's pf 1000's/ Then 100's of thousands. These days, few if any are prepared to go to market unless they think they can sell millions of not billions. No one wants to just "make good", they all want to be billionaires. Even the big boys are not interested in small market shares, just look at MS and their WinPhone.

      Not enough people want devices that are more than a Facebook machine, so no one is prepared to do it,

      1. Christian Berger Silver badge

        Maybe there is a chance

        I mean we now see "kickstarters" for devices close to what we're looking for. One example is the Pocket Chip. It's by no means perfect, but it's good enough to be able to try things out. It already comes with a keyboard and 2.4 GHz wireless LAN. I've got the Kickstarter version, but even the final one only costs $70.

  14. mojacar_man

    Out With The Old?

    I recenly purchsed a "phablet" from a Chinese company called "Cubot". It has a high definition, 5.5 inch screen (Similar to the Samsung Note) and runs Android 6 very speedily. The Cubot Dinosaur cost only $100 fom China (It's £100 via Amazon, UK.). With top notch phones like these at a fraction of the Apple/Samsung prices how long before completely new names dominate this market?

  15. Munkstar

    My windows phone is great but the missing bank apps etc a pain. Flagship phones that were buggy .... pitiful.

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