On the eve of the launch of Windows Phone 7, Microsoft is acknowledging that getting back to the top of the mobile computing world will not be an easy trek.
“We have a lot of work to do to get back into the game,” Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said, according to the Wall Street Journal.
Interestingly enough, Ballmer said he wished Windows Phone 7 had hit the market a year ago and I couldn’t agree more. I remember meeting with Microsoft last year and asking about how it was going to counter the rise of Apple iPhone and Android and it showed off Windows Mobile 6.5. Cue the sad trombone.
Luckily, it’s not too late for Microsoft to gain some traction in the smartphone space, as most people around the world still use entry-level devices or feature phones. That is expected to rapidly change over the next five years and the smartphone market could be large enough to support three or four major operating systems.
Microsoft also brought the good with Windows Phone 7. In our reviews of the Samsung Focus and HTC Surround, we find that the new smartphone OS is a fresh take on the mobile computing space and it gets a lot of things right.
We like the interaction metaphors in Windows Phone 7 and it’s downright elegant to use. The app ecosystem is also quickly rounding in to shape – it’s not going to match Apple or Google in terms of volume but it already has many of the major apps people use on a daily basis.
It’s a good platform but it’s still a 1.0 version and it’s facing some very mature competitors. It’s still lacking key things like copy and paste, true multitasking and tethering aren’t there yet.
I personally like Microsoft’s software platform a lot but feel like it’s too early for me to jump on board. By this time next year though, I’m sure Windows Phone 7 will be just as good as the competitors.
[Via Wall Street Journal]