Microsoft: Windows Phone 7 may take 2 years to catch up to Apple, Google

Posted:
in iPhone edited January 2014
Microsoft VP Joe Belfiore declined to talk numbers Tuesday during his onstage interview at the D: Dive Into Mobile conference, but he did admit that the Windows Phone 7 platform might take as long as 2 years to catch up to Apple's iPhone and Google's Android.



Belfiore, who is Microsoft's director of Windows Phone Program Management, evaded direct questions regarding Windows Phone 7 sales, as Walt Mossberg of The Wall Street Journal pressed him to reveal a hard sales number, Engadget reports.



When Mossberg asked Belfiore how Windows Phone 7 is doing, Belfiore replied, "So far, so good. We've tried to make the launch go well. We wanted to get all the devices in the market, we didn't make that happen, but now we have 10 products around the world. We've ramped our ads up."



Unsatisfied with the vagueness of the response, Mossberg asked how many devices Windows had sold. Belfiore answered, "We're not talking numbers." Mossberg hinted that not mentioning numbers suggests poor sales, but Belfiore dismissed the suggestion, claiming it's just "too soon" to discuss numbers.



Throughout the interview, Mossberg continued to press Belfiore on Microsoft's latest mobile operating system. "How is this device different?" Mossberg asked Belfiore. When Belfiore referenced the dedicated camera button, Mossberg replied, "Other people have camera buttons."



"How soon until you get back into the market, before you're back to profitability, back to a good marketshare, up there with Android and Apple?" Mossberg asked. Belfiore admitted he didn't know. When Mossberg suggested a couple of years, Belfiore answered, "Maybe."



The Redmond, Wash., software giant unveiled the first 9 WP7 handsets in October, with devices from Dell, HTC, LG and Samsung.



Windows Phone 7 failed to make much of a splash when it launched in the U.S. in early November. Though a few stores attracted lines on launch day, reports suggested that only "a small handful" made purchase, with most of the customers interested in just the free concert tickets that were being given away for the launch.



Reports detailing informal checks with retailers suggest that initial sales Windows Phone 7 have been lackluster. Some estimates place the total number of units sold in the tens of thousands.



Initial reviews of the platform were mixed. Most reviewers were impressed with Microsoft's new user interface, but found it lacking when compared to iOS and Android.



A lack of interest in Windows Phone 7 has some developers thinking twice about the WP7 platform. Microsoft has reportedly blocked developers from seeing sales figures for their apps, withholding payments to app developers until February 2011.



In a blog post, developer Justin James suggested that developers should consider Windows Phone 7 a "hobby or a learning experience rather than a source of revenue until the App Hub issues are sorted out."
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 51
    What Joe meant by 2 years is "never".. Unless Apple and Google decides to just sit on their asses and stop innovating and improving iOS and Android for the next two years then yes MS might catch up..
  • Reply 2 of 51
    shadashshadash Posts: 470member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Wurm5150 View Post


    What Joe meant by 2 years is "never".. Unless Apple and Google decides to just sit on their asses and stop innovating and improving iOS and Android for the next two years then yes MS might catch up..



    Agreed about Apple. Google, I don't know. I could see MS replacing Google in a few years, or at least denting Android's lead significantly.
  • Reply 3 of 51
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by shadash View Post


    Agreed about Apple. Google, I don't know. I could see MS replacing Google in a few years, or at least denting Android's lead significantly.



    The possibility of Microsoft catching up with Apple or Google is approximately zip squat to the tenth power.
  • Reply 4 of 51
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by shadash View Post


    Agreed about Apple. Google, I don't know. I could see MS replacing Google in a few years, or at least denting Android's lead significantly.



    It's certainly possible (rather than impossible, like them catching up with Apple), but I doubt it. Windows Phone 7 is unlikely to do any catching up with anything. But we'll see.
  • Reply 5 of 51
    cmvsmcmvsm Posts: 204member
    Until MS gets rid of that loser Balmer, their 'innovative' new products will continue to lose share to the true innovators like Apple and Google. Every time a new MS product launches and flops, these interviews seem to be so painful for the MS execs in terms of extracting sales data, future forecasts, or new product launches.
  • Reply 6 of 51
    I felt bad for Joe.. Walt really did a number on him. Mossberg sounded like a douche but grilled that dude like a steak in a tailgate party. Good thing the guy was calm although he had that I want to punch Walt in the face look in him. That I'll see you in the parking lot look. If it was Ballmer.. Well Stevie B would've been sweating like a pig trying to answer those questions.
  • Reply 7 of 51
    jeffdmjeffdm Posts: 12,946member
    Windows Phone 7 in two years better be Windows Phone 9, or such an equivalent advancement under whatever naming convention they conjure between now and then. It's not like the mature desktop OS realm where they could afford to go seven years between viable OS iterations.
  • Reply 8 of 51
    shadashshadash Posts: 470member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cmvsm View Post


    Until MS gets rid of that loser Balmer, their 'innovative' new products will continue to lose share to the true innovators like Apple and Google. Every time a new MS product launches and flops, these interviews seem to be so painful for the MS execs in terms of extracting sales data, future forecasts, or new product launches.



    I keep hearing that Google is innovative, but I don't really see it. Search is great. The rest is either a pale copy (Android), or worse.
  • Reply 9 of 51
    jragostajragosta Posts: 10,473member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Wurm5150 View Post


    What Joe meant by 2 years is "never".. Unless Apple and Google decides to just sit on their asses and stop innovating and improving iOS and Android for the next two years then yes MS might catch up..



    No, what he really meant is that WinMobile is such a dog that they should use dog years - so it will take them 14 years to catch up (to where Apple and Google are today).
  • Reply 10 of 51
    cmvsmcmvsm Posts: 204member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by shadash View Post


    I keep hearing that Google is innovative, but I don't really see it. Search is great. The rest is either a pale copy (Android), or worse.



    The Android OS has been in development for quite some time, and purchased by Google in 2005. Since then, its captured more than 43% of Smartphone market share thru 2010. Not bad for a five year run and still growing. I'm an Apple man myself, but the Android OS has been sheer innovation from many perspectives, including marketing, and the sales have certainly followed. If you don't see that, then I guess you also didn't buy Apple stock in '05 at $44 a share. I did...
  • Reply 11 of 51
    Time to insert this:



  • Reply 12 of 51
    I can sense if folks at MS work their butts off, they will surely come up better than Android but iOS, no way. I don't see that happening in 2-5 years time. Obviously as post above says, Apple is not going to sit on their hands for all this time. In fact, Apple has a lot to catch up in regards to their iOS
  • Reply 13 of 51
    mgl323mgl323 Posts: 247member
    If Microsoft executes Windows Phone 7 correctly, it could be a direct competitor to both Google and Apple. Same goes for HP/Palm, only hardware wise for them. I believe WP7 will be in the race with Google, Apple, and HP/Palm. Those companies will be the next big four like the big four of the carriers.
  • Reply 14 of 51
    In two years MS will be releasing Windows Phone 9, which will be everything Windows Phone 7 promised to be. Microsoft will still be scrambling to catch up with iOS.



    In two years, Apple will be fighting off the same reputation MS began to have a few years back, and a couple years after that, people will be abandoning Apple foe some other new innovative company or Operating System. Maybe QNX? Google Chrome OS?



    Point being, this whole scenario has been played out time and time again. People get unhappy with the OS they have been using and look to something more contemporary, more capable, less stodgy.
  • Reply 15 of 51
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Smiles77 View Post


    Time to insert this:



    Classic Dilbert Cartoon



    Scott Adams is a genius cartoonist! This Dilbert cartoon should be enlarged and mounted on Ballmer's executive office wall where he can see it every day. Mossberg probably had a copy in his notebook while he was questioning Belfiore.
  • Reply 16 of 51
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by Ecphorizer View Post


    Scott Adams is a genius cartoonist! This Dilbert cartoon should be enlarged and mounted on Ballmer's executive office wall where he can see it every day. Mossberg probably had a copy in his notebook while he was questioning Belfiore.



    It's the epitome of Microsoft's continual strategy. I believe the word "insane" would work here as "doing the same thing over and over again while expecting different results." I have small hope for the growth of WP7, especially at the high prices they are demanding.
  • Reply 17 of 51
    In other words, it may take MS 2 years to catch up to where the competition is now.
  • Reply 18 of 51
    Every pipe-dream project at MS is always two years out. MS has absolutely no idea.



    If Windows Phone 7 bombs, it'll be very interesting to see whether Ballmer and the entire executive group survive with their ka-rears.
  • Reply 19 of 51
    docno42docno42 Posts: 3,304member
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by davesmall View Post


    The possibility of Microsoft catching up with Apple or Google is approximately zip squat to the tenth power.



    I don't think it would be hard for Microsoft to suck off the top tier Android users - the ones who want a smartphone and just didn't Android for free and don't care that they have Android vs. a dumb feature phone.



    MS will be able to provide a much more consistent and quality experience and in time that will help them differentiate from the Android horde that is descending into a chaos of versions and varied experiences that make the mess that was the previous Windows phone ecosystem look like the curated iOS universe in comparison.
  • Reply 20 of 51
    Quote:
    Originally Posted by cmvsm View Post


    The Android OS has been in development for quite some time, and purchased by Google in 2005. Since then, its captured more than 43% of Smartphone market share thru 2010. Not bad for a five year run and still growing. I'm an Apple man myself, but the Android OS has been sheer innovation from many perspectives, including marketing, and the sales have certainly followed. If you don't see that, then I guess you also didn't buy Apple stock in '05 at $44 a share. I did...



    Too bad five years ago it was just a cheap, search-centric, knockoff of blackberry os. And now it's a cheap, search-centric knockoff of iOS. Their success is not due to innovation. Don't kid yourself. And what does android innovation, or lack of, have to do with having purchased apple stock in 05? If you thought android was so innovative back then, why wouldn't you have purchased android stock?
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