1. snowmutt's Avatar
    So, if you have not heard, Microsoft has adjusted their hardware requirements to allow for "virtual" softkeys instead of the capacitive keys for "back-home-search", removal of the camera shutter key, and adjustments to allow apps to be stored on memory cards.

    ‘Open for business’ – Microsoft gives reference design for Windows Phone, announces nine new OEMs | Windows Phone Central

    This has resulted in the follow up announcement that LG will be back onboard producing WP devices, and Lenovo (Hello, Motorola!!), Karbonn, XOLO, Longcheer, Gionee,and Foxconn will be joining the team.

    This has led to our own Daniel Rubino to wonder if losing what makes WP unique to get more Android producers onboard is a bad thing:
    Windows Phone is losing some hardware differentiation as Microsoft woos Android manufacturers | Windows Phone Central
    I, however, am excited. Not everyone agrees with me, which is silly of them. Come on, it's me, Snowmutt!! Would I steer you wrong? (Please, let us not really answer that.)
    As a matter of a fact, if you read Mr. Rubino's piece, the first comment is disapproving and it is none other then our own Micah Dawson. Lines are being drawn already...
    But I believe in this move. Microsoft has ALWAYS wanted to walk the line between the open Android and closed iOS options. They have always wanted a unified user experience which is easier to improve, update, and results in a seamless operation with hardware that provides excitment and an entire range of uses. I think the first part has been a complete success. But, the second part hasn't shown up. Manufacturers are forced to conform to stricter requirements, resulting in half efforts and moderate promotion. This is a result of WP not selling well. Which WP is not selling well, because the efforts are half baked and are only moderatly promoted.
    Nokia changed all that, but now they are becoming a part of the Empire. While there is nothing really wrong with that, I still want more creativity driving WP. If manufactuers can make simply adjustments to their top end Android devices as well as their budget offerings, all of a sudden:
    -We could see a "GS5" WP.
    -We could see a "Galaxy Note" WP.
    -We could see a "HTC 1" WP.
    -We could see a..... wait for it... a "Motorola Droid 4" WP with an actual hardware keyboard!!
    Meanwhile, the Lumia line will be alive and well to give us the follow up L1020 and L1520. I see no downside to this, I truly don't. Microsoft still will allow no skins or alterations to the core of WP, so it stays our WP. And IF these manufacturers can streamline the money to use the same hardware, they may be more willing to spend some time and money promoting them.
    I am truly excited by this!! Bring on the future, and give us some choices!!
    Laura Knotek and James8561 like this.
    02-23-2014 01:04 PM
  2. eric12341's Avatar
    I too am happy to see this. It will help WP to get into the hands of more consumers which is what we want. Just means that there will be more choice out there, for those who don't want virtual buttons they can buy the traditional WP devices that will still be made.
    Laura Knotek and snowmutt like this.
    02-23-2014 05:22 PM
  3. aximtreo's Avatar
    Meanwhile, the Lumia line will be alive and well to give us the follow up L1020 and L1520. I see no downside to this, I truly don't. Microsoft still will allow no skins or alterations to the core of WP, so it stays our WP. And IF these manufacturers can streamline the money to use the same hardware, they may be more willing to spend some time and money promoting them.


    From your posting, this is the most important positive to the new guidelines. I agree, it's a great idea. I've been married twice so I have made bad choices but I feel this one is spot on. LOL
    02-24-2014 08:15 AM

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