1. Jcmg62's Avatar
    CES 2019 is drawing to a close, and it's become evident to even a casual observer that Microsoft is not in it for the consumer.

    Don't misunderstand me, I appreciate that Microsoft no longer use CES as the main event, but it's pretty obvious that Microsoft are not even remotely consumer focussed.

    Devices aside, just about everything that uses a digital assistant is running Google or Alexa. Is Cortana even still a thing? So much potential, just thrown away.

    I, like most Windows Central visitors, consider myself a Microsoft/Windows fan.

    When Windows Mobile died, it was a tough thing to accept. I'd built my entire ecosystem around Windows, and suddenly there was a glaring void in my mobile computing strategy.

    Begrudgingly, I went and bought an Android phone, but I wasn't too worried, because the Andromeda rumour mill had been grinding out patents and stories of its imminent arrival for over a year by then, and I figured I'd be back to a full circle Windows ecosystem within 12 months.

    Microsoft conducted some soul searching, and I'm assuming some market research, and the chiefs assembled in a fancy boardroom, rubbed Satya's head like a crystal ball, and decided that foldable phones and highly mobile pocket pc technology is simply not a thing that people really want.

    Clearly, they decided, Samsung and all those other silly companies are totally onto a stupid thing with their crazy foldable devices. "What a bunch of numbskulls!" those Microsoft execs said amougnst themselves, "foldable mobile computers! Pah! No one wants that. No, we must stop investing in that concept immediately."

    If you listen closely, you can actually hear Steve Ballmer looking at an iPhone and laughing about how it'll never take off.

    So, Andromeda died. Or stalled. Or whatever, but the end result remains. It never made it out of a lab, and there's every chance it never will, regardless of what anyone tells you.

    Maybe there's still a faint Andromeda pulse, locked away in a dark laboratory somewhere on the Microsoft campus. But end-users cannot plan thier ecosystem on experiments.

    End users need products, not rumours.

    So here I am, 12 months later, with part of my ecosystem in Windows, and part in Google/Android.

    I don't want this ecosystem.

    Call me obsessive compulsive, but I like a circle to have a start and an end. I like having all my digital things stored away in one locker, neatly compartmentalised across one platform. And I was willing to spend good money on Microsoft devices (phones and bands) and services (groove music) to keep all of my stuff in one place.

    But Microsoft doesn't want that. They seem determined to force me to go to other providers for my phone, my wearable and my music.

    Maybe that's the strategy.

    Maybe this new, group hug induced Microsoft is all about sharing the wealth. Maybe they don't want their users to be singularly dependent on one eco-system.

    If that's the plan, the job is done and congratulations, Microsoft. Goal achieved.

    For me, I want one provider, so I'm going to give it until December 2019, and if a Windows-powered mobile pc solution isn't on the ground, then it's time to embrace Android, Chrome, Google docs, Google drive, etc, etc, etc and go all in with a company that, throughout all it's faults...and there are many...still want to service the consumer market.
    Lobo Technician likes this.
    01-11-2019 02:18 AM
  2. sd4f's Avatar

    For me, I want one provider, so I'm going to give it until December 2019, and if a Windows-powered mobile pc solution isn't on the ground, then it's time to embrace Android, Chrome, Google docs, Google drive, etc, etc, etc and go all in with a company that, throughout all it's faults...and there are many...still want to service the consumer market.
    If you feel that way, then I'd suggest might as well go down that path now and not wait. I really don't think that MS will release a 'phone' of sorts any time soon.

    MS recognise that mobile is a huge component of their future. They also would have done a lot of analysis on why their attempt failed. I think that they would have come up with the fact that third party support just wasn't there, and that's something they just can't address on their own.

    My suspicion is that the market is ready for a disruption. Smartphones have been stale for a few years, no innovation for like the last 5, at least, sales starting to slide and more importantly, people aren't upgrading. So, I think MS is keeping their andromeda device at the ready, continually working on it, so that when the disruption does occur, they are there ready to pounce.

    I really think that MS won't release the andromeda device unless they strongly believe it will be a winner. This probably means that the MS app store needs to get a lot better, and PWA's need to get sorted out and replace some big name apps. Neither of those are proabbly going to happen this year.
    Lobo Technician likes this.
    01-11-2019 02:45 PM
  3. Lobo Technician's Avatar
    I feel the same way, I really enjoy being fully connected to one ecosystem, I'm still using my Lumia 650 as my daily driver. Microsoft always seemed like the ecosystem of choice due to the dominance of Windows, but I fear they might be going the way of IBM.
    Jcmg62 likes this.
    01-14-2019 02:56 PM
  4. Ryujingt3's Avatar
    I feel the same way, I really enjoy being fully connected to one ecosystem, I'm still using my Lumia 650 as my daily driver. Microsoft always seemed like the ecosystem of choice due to the dominance of Windows, but I fear they might be going the way of IBM.
    That's been on the cards for some time and is now more and more evident.
    03-17-2019 06:25 AM
  5. sd4f's Avatar
    That's been on the cards for some time and is now more and more evident.
    I think the end of the Ballmer era saw a lot of change. It's sad because as a company, they seemed to pour in a lot of effort for consumers. I get it that the strategy didn't quite work, and the Nadella era has basically been rationalisation and consolidation, but I think it's more about targeting what is working, and casting off that which isn't.

    I suppose consumers just aren't a focus because they don't contribute enough money. 5 years ago, as a casual observer, I couldn't really see where things were headed. When MS went for their consumer push, which was much earlier, I guess it would have been more along the lines of 'fear of missing out', because know one could predict how things would pan out, but now, when it's clear that even Google isn't really making the sort of money that one would think they are, it makes a lot of sense why MS would abandon competing in the consumer space.

    This is a point which may be a little bit more interesting to expand upon, as when I consider how things have eventuated, the business strategy worked out for MS in the sense that they've concentrated on their premium market, and left the scraps to others.

    The important thing is, there's no point barracking for any corporation, especially fickle tech companies. They have no loyalty except to the dollar; there have been enough scandals plaguing all of them to prove that point many times.
    Last edited by sd4f; 03-20-2019 at 08:38 AM.
    03-20-2019 08:26 AM
  6. Ryujingt3's Avatar
    I think the end of the Ballmer era saw a lot of change. It's sad because as a company, they seemed to pour in a lot of effort for consumers. I get it that the strategy didn't quite work, and the Nadella era has basically been rationalisation and consolidation, but I think it's more about targeting what is working, and casting off that which isn't.

    I suppose consumers just aren't a focus because they don't contribute enough money. 5 years ago, as a casual observer, I couldn't really see where things were headed. When MS went for their consumer push, which was much earlier, I guess it would have been more along the lines of 'fear of missing out', because know one could predict how things would pan out, but now, when it's clear that even Google isn't really making the sort of money that one would think they are, it makes a lot of sense why MS would abandon competing in the consumer space.

    This is a point which may be a little bit more interesting to expand upon, as when I consider how things have eventuated, the business strategy worked out for MS in the sense that they've concentrated on their premium market, and left the scraps to others.

    The important thing is, there's no point barracking for any corporation, especially fickle tech companies. They have no loyalty except to the dollar; there have been enough scandals plaguing all of them to prove that point many times.
    I think it is a bit unfair though to abandon customers completely. I think there is room for a third mobile phone ecosystem. Provided MS market it properly of course. Heck, if they just released Android phones (like BlackBerry now do), with MS's own spin on it (i.e. custom ROM), I'd take that.
    03-20-2019 09:27 AM

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