1. Todd Norris's Avatar
    I bought the Nokia Lumia 925 when it came out in hopes that it would simplify my life by connecting all my Microsoft products together. It didn't but I stuck with the phone it hopes that it would eventually. After the 8.1 update things really started taking shape and I started to really enjoy my experience with windows phone. It felt like things were looking up for the platform. Since then there has been a big absence of the feeling of commitment from Microsoft. I started to see technology take a step forward with larger screens. I wanted to stay with windows but the only option was the 1520 which was too big and square. After waiting a reasonable amount of time, I finally gave up on a successor to the 925 and made the leap to a Note 4. I've had an iPhone prior to my windows phone and now I found myself on Google's platform.

    From my perspective, Apple's closed off system dictated my phone, experience and how I used it. Because they only have one device, so to speak, you got updates regularly and the app selection was great and ran on all versions of the OS. The hardware was built solid but the technical specs were mediocre.

    In the Android space, the phones are severely fragmented. There are a lot of apps but they're bound to specific versions, devices and many dependent on if you've rooted your phone. Sure the customization options are endless but that also means the phone manufacturer customizes it's own UI layer and the network carrier gets in with it's own bloatware that cannot be removed. Updates and bug fixes are few and far between because each vendor (OS, Manufacturer, Carrier, App devs) have to update accordingly. by the time you get an OS update, new bugs and malware have beat it to your phone.

    The Window's platform is the fastest and most intuitive to use since 8.1. The OS outshines the others in almost every way. The ecosystem on the other hand is lacking and the main reason is commitment. The customers nor the developers feel a commitment from Microsoft. They've made some bad decisions by abandoning technology , platforms and customers without offering alternatives, solutions or a narrative to keep customers, developers and fans on the train. How can we remain committed to your offerings if you, yourself are not?

    To me, Microsoft is in the middle where it cannot decide to follow Apple's lead or Google. They purchased Nokia but then offer Windows phone OS free. This confuses me as to their commitment and strategy? Be a leader! Stop giving your OS away. Stop making a gazillion low end devices with confusing names and numbers. Make a low end phone, a mid range with 2 screen variations and a high end spected out.

    Go back to making productivity your motivation. When I start a word project on my phone, let me switch to my Surface and finish it. If I open outlook and get my mail on my phone, read some and delete some, let me continue that experience or process on another device. Make my productivity seamless across all Microsoft's products, utilize your cloud. Charge subscriptions and remove the fragmentation of your products. This will ensure that customers are all on the latest and greatest as well as drawing developers to your platform.

    Give us your commitment on what you create - a narrative, a commercial...something.

    I hope Windows 10 provides this path and ends the frustration.
    aximtreo and thatdennis like this.
    01-21-2015 05:26 AM
  2. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    You do realise that this is a user forum and that pretty much all of us are customers?

    There's been many discussions around what MS should or shouldn't do. Today we hope to find out in some way where they're heading. Let's wait and see.
    Last edited by N_LaRUE; 01-21-2015 at 06:06 AM.
    a5cent and chris722 like this.
    01-21-2015 05:46 AM
  3. Pete's Avatar
    To me, Microsoft is in the middle where it cannot decide to follow Apple's lead or Google. They purchased Nokia but then offer Windows phone OS free. This confuses me as to their commitment and strategy? Be a leader! Stop giving your OS away. Stop making a gazillion low end devices with confusing names and numbers. Make a low end phone, a mid range with 2 screen variations and a high end spected out.
    To my view, Microsoft is attempting to do what the market is asking for. Yes, there's a wide range of lower-cost devices, but those customers are pretty demanding in the features they want. Unfortunately, one low-cost phone can't fill all of those boxes (otherwide it would be too expensive), so there's a raft of new devices (I guess in the same way as there's a raft of new Android devices).

    The main reason (i.e. excuse) as why mainstream app developers don't cover Windows Phone is a perception of low market share. In creating more buzz in the lower end of the market, MS is trying to sell more devices in order to boost numbers of users). Unfortunately, there's no magic bullet that Microsoft can fire that'll suddenly make it perfect for everyone (Apple users love Apple too much, Android users enjoy their customisation and consequential lack of security too much).

    In about eight hours time, we'll have more of a view on how Windows Phone is moving forward (and the rest of the Windows ecosystem as a whole).

    Personally, market share doesn't bother me. Having a great device that caters for my needs is more important to me.
    aximtreo, a5cent and jmshub like this.
    01-21-2015 05:58 AM
  4. Todd Norris's Avatar
    Market share doesn't bother me either but I would guess that customers who buy low end phones are less likely to purchase apps. That strategy doesn't make sense to me but we also don't know the intent or larger picture. As you said, hopefully today, they'll fill in some blanks.
    01-21-2015 06:07 AM
  5. dKp1977's Avatar
    Go back to making productivity your motivation. When I start a word project on my phone, let me switch to my Surface and finish it. If I open outlook and get my mail on my phone, read some and delete some, let me continue that experience or process on another device. Make my productivity seamless across all Microsoft's products, utilize your cloud. Charge subscriptions and remove the fragmentation of your products. This will ensure that customers are all on the latest and greatest as well as drawing developers to your platform.
    Nice post, thank you. I agree with it in most aspects. But the part I quoted isn't something Microsoft needs to implement, as it has already been there from the get go. E-Mails and documents (stored on OneDrive) are synchronoized seamlessly across devices.
    a5cent likes this.
    01-21-2015 06:07 AM
  6. Jas00555's Avatar
    I really don't understand what's wrong with making what they think is the best phone they can make, but still licensing the OS so others can try it out.
    01-21-2015 06:08 AM
  7. Todd Norris's Avatar
    Nice post, thank you. I agree with it in most aspects. But the part I quoted isn't something Microsoft needs to implement, as it has already been there from the get go. E-Mails and documents (stored on OneDrive) are synchronoized seamlessly across devices.
    I have office 365 and unless I've configured it incorrectly, I cannot do this with word or email however, I can with OneNote.
    01-21-2015 06:20 AM
  8. Todd Norris's Avatar
    I really don't understand what's wrong with making what they think is the best phone they can make, but still licensing the OS so others can try it out.
    For me, it's fragmentation. We already have to wait for carriers to approve updates. Adding another speed bump by way of manufacturers seems counter productive but that's just my point of view.
    01-21-2015 06:33 AM
  9. Jas00555's Avatar
    For me, it's fragmentation. We already have to wait for carriers to approve updates. Adding another speed bump by way of manufacturers seems counter productive but that's just my point of view.
    I suppose, but people buy into those knowing that might happen. Some people actually buy 3rd party devices because they like they them more than Lumias, but they may not be committed to Android. I personally don't see the problem in sending the message that your hardware will be getting updates faster, but still allow others to do their thing.
    01-21-2015 06:54 AM
  10. LockOnTech's Avatar
    For me, it's fragmentation. We already have to wait for carriers to approve updates. Adding another speed bump by way of manufacturers seems counter productive but that's just my point of view.
    If you are waiting for regular updates, try enrolling in the preview for developers.
    01-21-2015 06:54 AM
  11. Mike Gibson's Avatar
    I really don't understand what's wrong with making what they think is the best phone they can make, but still licensing the OS so others can try it out.
    If MSFT took WP proprietary then they could optimize the hell out of the OS. That would allow them to increase battery life, increase performance in general, and have a smaller OS footprint. In addition, they could innovate in hardware technology quicker (faster cameras, etc). Having a general OS that needs to work on nonproprietary hardware means you have, well, a more general design internally that can handle missing features. That leads to code bloat, bugs, more testing, etc.

    The only downside, and it's a biggie, is that MSFT alone would have to pay for all the advertising and promotion of WP. They're effectively doing that right now and will be for the foreseeable future ... so they should go proprietary.
    a5cent likes this.
    01-21-2015 07:04 AM
  12. Jas00555's Avatar
    If MSFT took WP proprietary then they could optimize the hell out of the OS. That would allow them to increase battery life, increase performance in general, and have a smaller OS footprint. In addition, they could innovate in hardware technology quicker (faster cameras, etc). Having a general OS that needs to work on nonproprietary hardware means you have, well, a more general design internally that can handle missing features. That leads to code bloat, bugs, more testing, etc.

    The only downside, and it's a biggie, is that MSFT alone would have to pay for all the advertising and promotion of WP. They're effectively doing that right now and will be for the foreseeable future ... so they should go proprietary.
    What do you mean optimize it? They would still need to code it for low end devices like the Lumia 530. Actually, I haven't seen a phone lower spec'd as the Lumia 530, and many of these new low end phones are usually about the same in terms of hardware, so I don't see what they could "optimize" if low end devices still had to exist. It's not like the fact that WP can support HTC's smart covers slows it down at all...

    Edit: I would also want to point out that the "general OS" you're talking about is called a reference design and all of their phones currently follow it. It's not like they have to code for mediatek processors or something.
    Last edited by Jas00555; 01-21-2015 at 07:53 AM.
    jmshub likes this.
    01-21-2015 07:08 AM
  13. Mike Gibson's Avatar
    What do you mean optimize it? They would still need to code it for low end devices like the Lumia 530. Actually, I haven't seen a phone lower spec'd as the Lumia 530, and many of these new low end phones are usually about the same in terms of hardware, so I don't see what they could "optimize" if low end devices still had to exist. It's not like the fact that WP can support HTC's smart covers slows it down at all...

    Edit: I would also want to point out that the "general OS" you're talking about is called a reference design and all of their phones currently follow it. It's not like they have to code for mediatek processors or something.
    MSFT can design their own device hardware, reducing the amount of support needed in the general OS software. Going after a well known target is *much* easier from a driver standpoint and that filters up through the entire OS. The higher level code doesn't need to be as hands-off as you normally have to be in a general OS (e.g. if I know ahead of time how big of a render target my hardware can support then I can write my high level code to take advantage of it). If I know how fast my GPU is at certain operations then I can optimize for them.

    Integrating sensor support can be optimized when you know ahead of time the capabilities of your hardware (known accuracy, precision, etc.). My HTC 8X doesn't have the same hardware as my wife's 920, especially when it comes to positioning sensors. The 920 is much more accurate than mine because it has an extra sensor (magnetometer, iirc). The MSFT SDEs writing the algorithm to determine the 3d orientation of the phone had to design, develop, and test for at least two different hardware configurations. That adds code, bugs, etc.

    Finally, simply read through the MSDN Library for Windows Phone development. You'll see tons of documentation on how to test for and deal with whether features are present or not (just dealing with various screen sizes and various ppi is a big problem).
    a5cent likes this.
    01-21-2015 03:57 PM
  14. a5cent's Avatar
    ^ Knowing whether MS should go proprietary or not is beyond my pay grade, but Mike is right about the technical aspects. However, assuming MS would still want to release a wide range of devices across various price points, it probably wouldn't be as useful as we'd hope. With such a wide range of performance characteristics and hardware configurations to cater towards, it's just not possible to optimize in that fashion, or at least not equally well for all devices simultaneously. They'd still have to take a the high level approach to accessing hardware via multiple abstraction layers.

    The only way to really benefit from that kind of optimization is by doing what Apple does. They have the luxury of never having to optimize the OS for more than a single device - the one they are currently working on. Earlier models are just left to deal with the new OS as best they can.

    Assuming MS intends to continue providing multiple high-, mid- and low-end offerings every year, I doubt they'd be able to squeeze noticeable performance improvements out of their hardware platforms, even if they went proprietary. They'd have to go even further than that, and also change their hardware strategy, by reducing their device portfolio, making it similar to what Apple does.
    Last edited by a5cent; 01-21-2015 at 06:15 PM. Reason: spelling
    01-21-2015 04:34 PM
  15. Laura Knotek's Avatar
    ^ Knowing whether MS should go proprietary or not is beyond my pay grade, but Mike is right about the technical aspects. However, assuming MS would still want to release a wide range of devices across various price points, it probably wouldn't be as useful as we'd hope. With such a wide range of performance characteristics and hardware configurations to cater towards, it's just not possible to optimize in that fashion, or at least not equally well for all devices simultaneously. They'd still have to take a the high level approach to accessing hardware via multiple abstraction layers.

    The only way to really benefit from that kind of optimization is by doing what Apple does. They have the luxury of never having to optimize the OS for more than a single device - the one they are currently working on. Earlier models are just left to deal with the new OS as best they can.

    Assuming MS intends to continue providing multiple high-, mid- and low-end offerings every year, I'd doubt they'd be able to squeeze noticeable performance improvements out of any of hardware platforms, even if they went proprietary. They'd have to go even further than that, and also change their hardware strategy, by reducing their device portfolio, making it similar to what Apple does.

    Couldn't Microsoft do the same as Apple and make the low end device the old one?
    01-21-2015 04:37 PM
  16. a5cent's Avatar
    I have office 365 and unless I've configured it incorrectly, I cannot do this with word or email however, I can with OneNote.
    Maybe I'm not quite understanding you, but I think I do exactly that. For the projects I'm currently working most of the files are on OneDrive. Any change I make to any of those documents, no matter what device I'm using, is synched to all my other devices.

    For e-mail this has worked since WP7 back in 2010, provided your e-mail is hosted on an IMAP capable server. Obviously this works best using Outlook.com.
    Last edited by a5cent; 01-22-2015 at 04:35 AM.
    01-21-2015 04:40 PM
  17. Mike Gibson's Avatar
    ... Assuming MS intends to continue providing multiple high-, mid- and low-end offerings every year, I'd doubt they'd be able to squeeze noticeable performance improvements out of any of hardware platforms, even if they went proprietary. They'd have to go even further than that, and also change their hardware strategy, by reducing their device portfolio, making it similar to what Apple does.
    Definitely. They can't go on making a thousand different devices and throw them against the wall to see what sticks. They need to chop that portfolio down to three categories: low, mid, and high (each may have minimal variants to handle world/regional technical differences).

    Anyway, it isn't going to happen so there's really no point in discussing it further.
    a5cent likes this.
    01-21-2015 06:01 PM
  18. a5cent's Avatar
    Couldn't Microsoft do the same as Apple and make the low end device the old one?
    I would definitely welcome that approach. That is certainly the path that leads to the kinds of devices and the software ecosystem that I could get most excited over. The big question is whether that jives with what MS wants to achieve... I suspect not. Just like Mike, I'd also say: "not happening".

    The main problem is that even a three year old high-end device has no hope of hitting the price points MS wants their 53x and 43x devices to reach. Maybe there is some middle ground somewhere, but even three devices seems to make the direct-to-metal optimizations Mike mentioned rather unlikely. Just doing that for one device is already very laborious and costly.

    On a side note, I think WP's biggest performance bottlenecks are elsewhere, unrelated to how WP accesses hardware. If MS wants performance improvements, the first place they need to look is XAML, the UI framework defined by the WinRT API, and the overhead caused by apps being hosted in a managed .NET runtime environment. These are nice concepts, but costly in terms of performance, and no amount of optimizing will make that better. The costs are inherent to the concepts themselves.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    01-21-2015 06:29 PM
  19. Todd Norris's Avatar
    I just watched the windows 10 event and I have to say, everything I asked for I got. The holographic programming was a trip. If you haven't watched it you're missing out. I think Satya is moving Microsoft forward in a big way. It's on YouTube in its entirety (2hrs) and a scaled down version (40min).

    BTW- they closed saying "yes, high end phones ARE coming with the release of windows 10.
    01-21-2015 08:11 PM
  20. fdalbor's Avatar
    Don't know if this is going to work or not. I went and got a mid-Android (moto G lte) to cover my **** in case it does not. But I also bought a 635 to backup my 820. One way or another I'm covered. Still Win 10 is a long ways off.
    01-21-2015 10:40 PM

Similar Threads

  1. Best budget Nokia Lumia phone?
    By venom0706 in forum Microsoft News & Rumors
    Replies: 15
    Last Post: 01-23-2015, 09:37 AM
  2. What is future of smart banking apps?
    By Windows Central Question in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-21-2015, 12:33 PM
  3. Microsoft Band Bricked ?
    By revolvet in forum Microsoft Band & Band 2
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-21-2015, 10:20 AM
  4. Is Microsoft event live now?
    By Mohamed El-Fadaly in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 8
    Last Post: 01-21-2015, 02:30 AM
  5. What are the 3 contacts on the back of my 1520?
    By Jason Ballard2 in forum Ask a Question
    Replies: 3
    Last Post: 01-20-2015, 09:55 PM
LINK TO POST COPIED TO CLIPBOARD