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Nokia: Microsoft Must Evolve To Make Windows Phone a Success

Unknown Lamer posted about a year ago | from the about-firing-the-maemo-staff dept.

Businesses 230

DavidGilbert99 writes "Microsoft's priorities are Windows, Office, Xbox, and Surface. Windows Phone is no where near the top and that is the main reason why it has failed to make the impact many hoped for in the three years it has been around. While Microsoft can take the hit and play the long-game, the same cannot be said for Nokia, the other main player in the eco-system. While it has done all it can to evolve the platform, it needs Microsoft to step up and begin innovating. Bryan Biniak, Nokia VP, agrees: 'We are trying to evolve the cultural thinking [at Microsoft] to say 'time is of the essence.' Waiting until the end of your fiscal year when you need to close your targets, doesn't do us any good when I have phones to sell today.'"

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Good luck .. (5, Insightful)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#44392491)

While it has done all it can to evolve the platform, it needs Microsoft to step up and begin innovating

If your company future depends on Microsoft innovating on your behalf ... you're already screwed.

I'm hard pressed to think of anything really innovative Microsoft has done in years -- mostly they look at what others are doing and copy it (or buy it).

If they're going to put out the Windows Phone platform and then wait around until people buy it to take it seriously, nobody is ever going to take it seriously.

Re:Good luck .. (2, Funny)

DickBreath (207180) | about a year ago | (#44392577)

Windows Phone will not succeed regardless of any tough new standards of aerodynamic efficiency that Microsoft may impose upon office chair suppliers.

Re:Good luck .. (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392713)

I'm hard pressed to think of anything really innovative Microsoft has done in years -- mostly they look at what others are doing and copy it (or buy it).

That made Apple the #1 company on the planet, don't knock it!

True (5, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393151)

True, but Apple mostly improved upon the things they bought. Microsoft has a history of thinking "hmm, that's not quite right, it needs more cruft!".

Re:True (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#44393745)

Microsoft buys a lot of ideas too. Except that they them in order to bury them.

Re:Good luck .. (2, Interesting)

rwven (663186) | about a year ago | (#44392785)

IMHO:

This is extra sucky because I feel that Windows Phones and Windows Tablets offer, hands down, the best "mobile" experience. Their interface is truly great for tablets/phones, but they arrives too little/too late to the scene. If they hadn't had such a mess internally the first time around in regards to tablets, things might have turned out VERY different.

I absolutely love using their interface in a "touch" environment. If they can somehow figure out how to...yaknow...actually succeed, I will definitely have no qualms about buying their devices in the future.

Re:Good luck .. (4, Insightful)

David Gerard (12369) | about a year ago | (#44392903)

I know a pile of people with Windows phones. They really like them lots and find the interface marvellous.

Every one of them says the big problem is ... no bloody apps.

Re:Good luck .. (1)

rwven (663186) | about a year ago | (#44393199)

Exactly. And the quality of the apps that ARE present is questionable at best.

Re:Good luck .. (4, Informative)

21mhz (443080) | about a year ago | (#44393775)

I dunno. Today I have installed Yelp with an augmented reality mode courtesy of Nokia (called, get this, "monocle"). The app is awesome. My bank has been providing an app since WP7. Even the oft-invoked Instagram has got a bunch of third-party apps that work with it. One is reportedly better than the first-party apps for other platforms, another is officially supported by Nokia. Even the Google PIM services are sort of supported, and I don't care that much about Google+ to need it on the phone (I'm planning to buy the new Nexus tablet to get my Android fix, after the kids broke the old one).

At this point, I'd stand to lose if I switch my phone to Android or iOS. Fully usable offline maps from Nokia are the biggest thing. Google only offers "OK maps" after their latest regressive update. Don't get me started on Apple maps.

Re:Good luck .. (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393585)

> I know a pile of people with Windows phones.

Our thoughts and prayers are with their families during this difficult time.

Re:Good luck .. (1)

turgid (580780) | about a year ago | (#44393609)

We have a winner!

Re:Good luck .. (0)

davester666 (731373) | about a year ago | (#44393311)

That's just it. It wasn't just internally, the whole "MS Office is my domain, and I'm not making it work right for you" stupidity that Bill didn't slap down right away. Bill himself made it REQUIRE a stylus [just like the Surface does now].

They just don't have the vision at the top to do the "this is where everybody will want to go next, and they don't know it yet" thing.

Re:Good luck .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393855)

We've got a surface here in the office for testing. (We mostly have Lenovo Helix machines). I can't figure out why you say that the Surface requires a stylus? It can use one if you want to do some fine grained work (writing, etc.) on the touch screen. But that would be the same on anything. Try doing writing with touch on an iPad and you have the same issue. Definitely no stylus "required".

Re:Good luck .. (2, Interesting)

Jeremiah Cornelius (137) | about a year ago | (#44392787)

Microsoft evolve? Wrong metaphor! Repent and rehabilitate... maybe. I shall not hold my breath.

The Microsoft business is largely built on the corpse of DEC, who they slew on its deathbed, before the will could be attested.

Microsoft "conned" QDOS and ripped-off the creator to deal as an unscrupulous OEM to IBM. (BASIC is as BASIC does. I wonder if the source of MS BASIC can be audited for its original derivation?)

Microsoft "stole" Windows from Presentation Manager. (How many .DLLs had Microsoft written before OS/2)

Microsoft "stole" NT from VMS. (Dave Cutler, you didn't even change addresses or debug message locations!)

Microsoft "stole" AD from Banyan Vines (Hey! Why'd Banyan go out-of-business, instead of sue? Boardroom shenanigans?)

Microsoft completely ripped-off the display and windowing stack of NeXT/OSX, with their weird XML in place of PostScript/PDF.

Those are just egregious highlights. There is nothing MS ever invented and brought to market.

Re:Good luck .. (5, Insightful)

nine-times (778537) | about a year ago | (#44392799)

mostly they look at what others are doing and copy it (or buy it).

That's not the problem. The Metro UI is fairly innovative, for example, and not really copying or buying something. The problem is, it's bad.

The problem is that Microsoft has put too much focus into pushing their internal business agenda, and not enough on servicing their customers. Microsoft's development model is about deciding which strategic product they'd like you to buy, and then trying to force you to use it by hook or by crook, except they rarely consider the option of getting you to buy it by making it a great product.

Re:Good luck .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393267)

Metro is bad for u... for me, it's god send.. different strokes for different folks

Re:Good luck .. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393617)

The only stroke is the one Ballmer had when he dreamed up this POS strategy! Microsoft forgot the MOST IMPORTANT lesson of the "mac vs. PC" "war"...OPEN BEATS CLOSED EVERY SINGLE TIME! By taking Windows from an open platform (to develop on, not open source), to a closed "ecosystem", they ruined the ONE thing that kept developers programming happily on their platform! By changing the rules of the game every month or two, they annoyed the loyalists that remained! (Everything should be .NET, oh wait, Silverlight, oh wait again, we are shifting to C#!), then they KILL OFF TechNet? Why don't you just put a metaphorical gun to your company's head and pull the trigger? Oh, wait, that's what they are already doing!

Ballmer needs to go. Julie Larsen Green needs to go. And everyone else who is "running" this pitiful (though once great) company. If they don't, they will be broken up and sold in parts in the next 10 years, guaranteed.

Yeah reminds me of the small businessman cartoon (5, Informative)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about a year ago | (#44392867)

http://dilbert.com/strips/comic/2004-06-14/ [dilbert.com]

Come on Nokia, are you that dumb (oh wait, you are) that you are actually telling Microsoft that if they don't hurry, you are going to go bust and they can buy what they want of you for loose chance?

The Windows Phone platform turns a lot of otherwise not so smart people into blittering idiots. Take this gem:

You can't compare Windows Phone sales to Android and iOS because it has only been on the market a fraction of the time.

The truth? Windows Phones is now the OLDEST smartphone OS now Symbian has gone the way of the Dodo. MS has been trying for WELL OVER a DECADE. Yes, they keep renaming it in an attempt to wash away the stench of defeat... actually defeat is not the right word, the would imply they stood chance, I can claim I was defeated in the 1 mile race but it sorta looses any meaning if I never made it across the starting line.

Nokia bet its future on an OS from a company that hasn't managed to sell for over ten years. Why would it chance NOW when there are to OSes selling like hotcakes and a bunch of upstarts and re-entries fighting for the scraps. It like betting on the boxer who knocked himself trying to get into the ring in the next round because the next fight is on top of mount everest and everyone is bringing guns so his losing streak is... is there ANYONE who can walk upright who thinks MS was a good bet for Nokia?

Symbian was not dead yet, the N900 and N9 sold faster then Nokia was willing to sell them and Android is available if they wanted it. They HAD OS'es with proven track records. They went for the OS that didn't sell and has never sold. That is beyond risk taking, that is even beyond putting it all on one horse, that is insane. Personally I think Elop is even more a Trojan then most people realize. MS never bet on Nokia, they wanted to ruin them while they experimented and then hope to buy the assests cheaply and make their own phones.

You can't mis-manage a company like this by accident.

Re:Yeah reminds me of the small businessman cartoo (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393557)

Well as much as i'd like to blame it all on Elop, the whole management of Nokia has been fucking things up for ten years. Frankly all of them should be fired. Instead now the workers are fired and the company is in the toilet and the management collects the rest of the money as bonuses. If they manage to convince enough fools to buy these MS phones, and stay afloat, it's going to be shit like this the rest of the time until someone buys the company or it finally goes bankrupt.

Re:Yeah reminds me of the small businessman cartoo (1)

Alomex (148003) | about a year ago | (#44393815)

Starting by the board of directors. Microsoft has been in deep dodo for the last decade, what makes them believe there is any one competent in management there?

Re:Good luck .. (3, Insightful)

molnarcs (675885) | about a year ago | (#44392885)

It was a stupid decision to tie themselves to Microsoft. The new Lumia and its camera is a very attractive phone for me. Probably most photographers would look at a phone's camera first, even though we are used to hauling around heavy gear. I would buy this phone in a second if it was running Android. And I'm sure I'm not alone - smartphone cameras are killing the compact camera market, and this is a feature that is important to many people. I also love some of their design choices.

Nokia still has some brand recognition left, especially in South-East Asia, but it's vanishing alarmingly fast. Had they introduced the Lumia 808 a year ago with stock Android and we some clever marketing campaign, they would have created some buzz. They could increase that buzz with this new launch. Instead, their are complaining about Microsoft. Big fracking LOL at them and their choice for a CEO.

Re:Good luck .. (0, Flamebait)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about a year ago | (#44393023)

The new Lumia and its camera is a very attractive phone for me.

Be careful. Nokia uses other cameras to take the pictures for their ads, and then claims that they were taken with the phone camera. Someone caught them on the street doing this . . . and took a picture with a phone camera, of course.

I am the owner of a Nokia N90, N800, N96 and N9. But I don't trust Nokia any more, now that Microsoft is running the company.

Re:Good luck .. (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#44393241)

If you trust ANY advertising / marketing company, you're in for a world of hurt.

Yep, Nokia got caught on that one but it's just One More Lie. Why it was only yesterday, I believe, that Google was caught hiding the USB power cord on the Chromedealywhopper thing.

And let's not get started about Apple. Or Microsoft. Or Lotus Notes (god, let's NOT get started on Lotus Notes).

Re:Good luck .. (0)

PolygamousRanchKid (1290638) | about a year ago | (#44393515)

This is my favorite Ballmer story: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Team_OS/2 [wikipedia.org]

Team OS/2 went external that spring, when the first Team OS/2 Party was held in Chicago. The IBM Marketing Office in Chicago created a huge banner visible from the streets. Microsoft reacted when Steve Ballmer roamed the floor with an application on diskette that had been specially programmed to crash OS/2;[3] and OS/2 enthusiasts gathered for an evening of excitement at the first Team OS/2 party.

[3] Dvorak, John C. "Microsoft Should Apologize" PC Magazine, October 20, 1998, p. 87

The CEO is the public face a company, and I personally find Mr. Ballmer extremely unctuous and repulsive. I have to use Windows on my PC for business. I have no other choice. But with a phone, I do have other choices, and one of the factors I evaluate in how I view the company that makes the phone. So I use an Android.

Which is actually very "profiling" of me, in the "crazy ass cracker" sense of the word. I have never personally met anyone who works for Microsoft. I keep imagining that there are some really nice and brilliant folks who work there. But then I think of Ballmer, and I think of him sending out internal memos all day, saying, "Try to do something even more nasty today!"

I'll probably meet someone from Microsoft someday, and that will probably convince me that Microsoft is not a "Nation of Ballmers", in the "Napoleonic" sense of the word. But maybe having a CEO who at least pretends to be "kinder and gentler" could do Microsoft a world of good.

Re:Good luck .. (4, Insightful)

WCMI92 (592436) | about a year ago | (#44392947)

Microsoft's "innovation" has been played out for over a decade. The last several years most of their products has been WORSE and a step back from the previous ones!

  Look at Windows 8 and the last couple versions of Office, for example. Their UI's are terrible designs. I will absolutely NEVER deploy a Windows 8 PC for an end user because I don't want the headache of supporting it.

Microsoft pretty much had the UI down when they released Windows 2000 and Office 97. Everything they've DONE to their UI since has been a step backward. Why do they do it? Because to justify the upgrades they have to MAKE IT LOOK DIFFERENT. Which means screwing with UI functionality. Why is that all they can do to differentiate product? Because they have NO IDEAS for actual features or enhancements to make the product any better!

The only product Microsoft has put out in 10 years that was better than it's predecessor was Windows 7. And that only because Vista was so awful that they panicked and actually LISTENED to their customers for once. Which they promptly undid when they decided to force keyboard and mouse based PC users to navigate a tablet touch screen by DEFAULT in Windows 8. My Macbook Pro doesn't force me to see an IOS UI by default...

Re:Good luck .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393711)

Have you spent much time with Windows 7? I would say it's UI is in every way better than Windows 2000.

Re:Good luck .. (1)

21mhz (443080) | about a year ago | (#44393827)

Microsoft pretty much had the UI down when they released Windows 2000 and Office 97. Everything they've DONE to their UI since has been a step backward.

What do you know, overpopulated three-level menu clusterfucks and the institutional separation between menus and toolbars were the pinnacle of UI design accordingly to some people.

Re:Good luck .. (1)

Alomex (148003) | about a year ago | (#44393857)

Hear hear. In MS Office their print preview functionality is worse than it was two product cycles ago. Their excel spreadsheets are no longer WYSIWYG. Something that looks fine on the screen might be mangled in the printout.

Re:Good luck .. (1)

IAmR007 (2539972) | about a year ago | (#44392961)

Nokia should have stuck with Qt.

Re:Good luck .. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393161)

Kin... taking away the start menu... putting ads on your dashboard/desktop... I guess that's it!

Re:Good luck .. (1)

thue (121682) | about a year ago | (#44393467)

> I'm hard pressed to think of anything really innovative Microsoft has done in years -- mostly they look at what others are doing and copy it (or buy it).

Kinect

Re:Good luck .. (2)

tuppe666 (904118) | about a year ago | (#44393783)

> I'm hard pressed to think of anything really innovative Microsoft has done in years -- mostly they look at what others are doing and copy it (or buy it).

Kinect

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/PrimeSense [wikipedia.org] Kinect hardware licensed from Primesense

but but but.. (3, Interesting)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44392497)

Wasn't the reason to go with Microsoft that you could customize more(hence not need ms to greenlight api's) than, say, your own OS or android?

in Finland we have this saying ":D".

(Sure, for Nokia developing for windows phone is probably cheaper than the other platforms but that's just because "can't do it" is the line instead of "yes we can!").

Re:but but but.. (1)

DickBreath (207180) | about a year ago | (#44392639)

> Wasn't the reason to go with Microsoft that you could customize more

It's hard to imagine how you could customize any more than on Android. So far, every brand of Android has a different front UI. I doubt that is going to happen with Windows Phone.


> in Finland we have this saying

I seem to recall Elop saying that using Android would be like peeing in your pants in the winter to keep warm.

Re:but but but.. (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44392819)

It's hard to imagine how you could customize any more than on Android. So far, every brand of Android has a different front UI. I doubt that is going to happen with Windows Phone.
I seem to recall Elop saying that using Android would be like peeing in your pants in the winter to keep warm.

well, at that same time amazon and some others were making customized androids already, which is why it was such a joke back then already.

Elop made some crazy ass comments like that peeing comment, since WP is like ordering the pee from overseas, warming it up in a microwave and pouring it on, if you pee your pants at least it's your pee - because anyone and everyone can make windows phones that are essentially the same, with Android at least Samsung owns the Samsung extensions and customizations(so LG can't ship exactly the same phone), also with android they would be more free in their hardware choices(with windows phone everyone is limited to the same soc choices pretty much, thanks to MS rules - and those soc's are going to forever be generation or two behind what android manufacturers can slap on their phones.. even if nokia was never a fan of using cutting edge soc's).

I'm starting to think that the only way Elop could possibly justify his choice would be if some backroom deal was revealed nokia to get a 15% cut of every sw sold on their windows phones(because that's a piece of pie they lost by going with 3rd party and google would have been unlikely to give that.. though I suspect MS wouldn't do that either).

Re:but but but.. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392935)

I seem to recall Elop saying that using Android would be like peeing in your pants in the winter to keep warm.

Nope, it was our home boy Anssi Vanjoki:
http://www.engadget.com/2010/09/21/ce-oh-no-he-didnt-anssi-vanjoki-says-using-android-is-like-pe/

Guess what he's up to now? Yep, selling luxury phones with Android.
http://www.vertu.com/en/collections/vertu-ti.aspx

I guess all director-level corporate dudes are essentially full of shit, which explains what keeps coming out of their mouth.

Re:but but but.. (1)

Darinbob (1142669) | about a year ago | (#44393803)

Of course there were many more options than just Windows Phone versus Android. Nokia had some very good solutions nearing completion when those projects were canned. Nokia was doing well in the business phone market whereas iPhone and Android seem to orient more towards consumers.

And you think they care, or even can? (3, Funny)

danaris (525051) | about a year ago | (#44392501)

What, at this late date, makes anyone think Microsoft is actually capable of evolving...?

Re:And you think they care, or even can? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393097)

Microsoft IS evolving. Into a monstrous pile of worthless crap.

Re:And you think they care, or even can? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393117)

They're turning Windows into Windows Phone, so arguably, they *are* evolving, but in the wrong direction. If anything, Windows Phone has far too much importance at MS. They're very quickly destroying their flagship product (Windows) and turning everything else into another Metro-ized piece of crap (Office, Visual Studio, etc) to try to sell devices which will never sell. Meanwhile, they're abandoning countless development technologies and APIs...

This is where as a C# developer I'm abandoning ship.

Re:And you think they care, or even can? (1)

ColdWetDog (752185) | about a year ago | (#44393259)

Remember, doesn't mean 'getting better' or 'improving' - it only means 'dealing with local conditions most effectively'.

Oh. Wait.

So basically (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392503)

when supposedly faced with the choice of remaining on the burning platform or diving into the cold sea, they decided the best course of action would be to tie themselves to a boat anchor and jump.

Don't worry Nokia (5, Insightful)

marcello_dl (667940) | about a year ago | (#44392513)

Well if Nokia financial situation becomes unbearable, I am sure microsoft can step up and buy her up, obviously at a discounted price. Which likely was the objective all along.

Re:Don't worry Nokia (2)

canadiannomad (1745008) | about a year ago | (#44392881)

Well if Nokia financial situation becomes unbearable, I am sure Microsoft can step up and buy her up, obviously at a discounted price. Which likely was the objective all along.

You know, if that was their plan, I would be quite impressed.
1. Create sucky OS
2. Convince excellent well respected cellular phone company to use said OS
3. Make that cellular phone company look bad, lose profitability
4. Buy that cellular phone company
5. Drop CEO and sucky OS in favour of better OS and flashy new CEO
6. Give CEO huge leaving bonus
7. Convince people it was all the CEO's fault
8. Profit!

But I think that is too many steps for MS...

Re:Don't worry Nokia (2)

symbolset (646467) | about a year ago | (#44393233)

Read up on Sendo. There aren't that many steps.

Let's see... (5, Informative)

bmo (77928) | about a year ago | (#44392515)

Microsoft OS: 90 bucks or whatever they're charging
Smaller ecosystem for apps

Compared to:
Larger ecosystem by orders of magnitude
An OS that doesn't cost a dime (unmodded)

Going with Microsoft on this is corporate suicide and the stock price chart shows it.

http://finance.yahoo.com/q/bc?s=NOK+Basic+Chart&t=5y [yahoo.com]

http://communities-dominate.blogs.com/brands/2012/06/the-final-reckoning-of-burning-platforms-memo-damaged-nokia-by-wiping-out-13b-in-revenues-and-destro.html [blogs.com]

--
BMO

Re:Let's see... (2)

Frosty Piss (770223) | about a year ago | (#44392579)

Microsoft OS: 90 bucks or whatever they're charging
Smaller ecosystem for apps

Compared to:
Larger ecosystem by orders of magnitude
An OS that doesn't cost a dime (unmodded)

Microsoft has deals with most phone manufacturers that use Android - a extortion of sorts to avoid patent fights. So, even if it ships with Android, part of the price was paying off Microsoft.

Even if you buy the phone used and load an unmodded copy of Android and get it working, the original purchaser already paid the MS Tax on the original Android OS that was installed.

Re:Let's see... (2)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44392643)

Which helps Nokia not one bit.

MS could never make a dime on phones and would be fine, Nokia is not in a good place.

Re:Let's see... (1)

fritsd (924429) | about a year ago | (#44393327)

A lot of Nokia's fundamental GSM patents were sold to some company called "Vringo" for millions (made video ringtones before and is now suing other mobile phone makers for billions). I think that's where the pea is under the cup presently.

Maybe Microsoft or Intellectual Ventures will purchase Vringo and sue everybody making mobile phones for <pinky-to-mouth-corner>ONE BILLION DOLLARS</pinky-to-mouth-corner>.

Then, they don't have to actually make any phones or sell any OSes, just extract the dane-geld.

Re:Let's see... (1)

thetoadwarrior (1268702) | about a year ago | (#44392685)

I refuse to use Windows phone but it looks like they're stock going up now after the slump.

Re:Let's see... (1)

gmuslera (3436) | about a year ago | (#44393211)

Forgot to add made with by a company with deep [yahoo.com] ties [ibtimes.com] with the NSA. At least for most Android phones you can install alternatives like CyanogenMod, not get stuck with just one (and bad) option.

Nokia had some control on their future with Symbian, Maemo/Meego. They should focus in making their platform as free as possible, maybe still bundling Windows Phone on them, but making available drivers, specifications and so on so a version of CyanogenMod, Ubuntu Touch, Sailfish or others could be developed as alternative OS. Their target should be sell hardware and services, not operating systems.

Who peed their pants to stay warm? (5, Insightful)

h4rr4r (612664) | about a year ago | (#44392519)

Nokia cuts its own throat and now has no one else to blame. Elop will quietly move back the MS once they are done.
Exactly zero people will be surprised.

Re:Who peed their pants to stay warm? (1)

Dracos (107777) | about a year ago | (#44392733)

Elop will quietly move back the MS once they are done.

Exactly. He'll come back as VP of mobile hardware development (or some such) when MS swoops in to take the boots from Nokia's corpse. Is there anyone left who doesn't see this as a convoluted, shady, long term plan for MS to become a handset maker?

Re:Who peed their pants to stay warm? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392991)

Probably at least a contingency plan. Elop goes and promotes WindowsPhone stuff, and gives MS a boost. Nokia takes off, benefiting MS further, or doesn't, but MS already has WP out there and promoted and then they can just buy up Nokia for pennies. It's win-win for MS.

Not so much for Nokia. They still need MS ... and every "should we spend time/money helping Nokia?" decision at MS comes down to "well they already served their purpose, and if they fail we can just buy them up for cheap" ... so Nokia is screwed.

But that was obvious from the beginning. A deal with MS is a deal with the devil.

Duh. (1)

preflex (1840068) | about a year ago | (#44392523)

It's not like Elop didn't know this would be a colossal clusterfsck. Why they didn't fire his ass on 2/12/2011, I'll never know.

Re:Duh. (1)

gstoddart (321705) | about a year ago | (#44392699)

It's not like Elop didn't know this would be a colossal clusterfsck.

The sad thing is, he probably didn't.

It's often amazing how business decisions get made that everyone else is saying "that sounds bad", but the business is trumpeting it as the most awesome thing ever. It's hard to tell if they genuinely didn't see it coming, or if they just wanted to get their executive bonuses paid before the company went under.

So now they've dumped their own OS, put out 10 (!) different smartphones this year, and are watching their sales dwindle on a platform nobody is interested in.

Do they give Darwin awards to companies?

Re:Duh. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393025)

There is one strategy that MS can do at anytime which would give them a stranglehold on the smartphone market:

1: Start out with a new protocol that replaces ActiveSync. This protocol would have multiple trademarks, patents, and because it is used for DRM, the DMCA anti-reverse-engineering laws would come into play.

2: Start selling how good and secure this protocol is over ActiveSync. PHBs buy into it. Perhaps get some regulating body to make some feature of the new protocol a mandate for compliance, such as a DRM stack.

3: Deprecate ActiveSync.

4: Now, MS has the horizontal and vertical, and the only devices that can use the AS successor are the ones they make, or they explicitly license. Anyone who tries to reverse engineer compatibility would get swiftly smacked down with the DMCA or WIPO treaty provisions.

5: Defang the EU by pointing to the fact that older level protocols are still there.

6: ?????

7: Profit. Yes, it would be simple to flip on POP, IMAP or AS, but it would cost the party their PCI/DSS3 or whatever compliance.

Sartorial Direction (1)

turgid (580780) | about a year ago | (#44393679)

The sad thing is, he probably didn't.

Maybe. Malice and stupidity and all that.

There is this story [wikipedia.org] about a vain leader and his sycophants that they tell to little children as a cautionary tale and a kind of moral primer. The thing is, once they're all grown up and working for a Company, they pretend to forget.

My beard is getting grey and I have yet so encounter a situation where it isn't true, unfortunately.

irony (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392525)

An Nokia KNOWS a thing or two about how to be a market failure.

so (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392529)

They (Nokia_) picked their cake, they can eat it.

They had things like the kin and zune as hints.

So what you're saying is... (5, Insightful)

oh_my_080980980 (773867) | about a year ago | (#44392545)

...you made a mistake by ditching symbian and focusing on Windows...hmmm.....

Re:So what you're saying is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392871)

And maemo/meego. Don't forget that!

Star Wars (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393229)

What does JarJar's got to do with this phone bizz?

Re:So what you're saying is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393089)

...you made a mistake by ditching symbian and focusing on Windows...hmmm.....

Yes, Nokia would be doing better if their OS was a decade behind.

Re:So what you're saying is... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393137)

...you made a mistake by ditching symbian and focusing on Windows...hmmm.....

Yes, Nokia would be doing better if their OS was a decade behind.

IPhones, the best selling smartphone in history, are using a crippled BSD at the core. An OS that is decades old. Slapping on a bling-bling UI is trivial.

Re:So what you're saying is... (2)

evilviper (135110) | about a year ago | (#44393767)

...you made a mistake by ditching symbian and focusing on Windows...hmmm.....

No, they made a mistake by focusing on Windows, and another mistake by not dumping Symbian far sooner, and another mistake by very slowly dragging out the development of MeeGo, and many, many more mistakes before that.

Can't we just accept that Nokia is a massively dysfunctional company that is unable to EVER make a good decision, and just NEEDS to go away at this point, so it can be replaced with something less awful?

Putting out fires (4, Interesting)

UnknowingFool (672806) | about a year ago | (#44392575)

MS is spending most of their time putting out fires these days: Windows 8 has a horrible reputation and disappointing sales, Xbox has had to do a complete 180 after a disastrous E3, Surface has been a flop with an estimated 6M unsold units. WP8, while not having great sales, isn't in crisis mode.

Re:Putting out fires (1)

fermion (181285) | about a year ago | (#44393237)

Really the last three years is irrelevant. MS is one of the granddaddies of the mobile computing/phone industry. Their first phone is 10 years old.

The original 'mistake' with the phone the same one they made with IE, trying to use it to tie end users to MS. This is the same thing we are seeing know with MS Office 365 and Azure. Ultimately it does not matter if any phone platform fails, as long as MS Windows and Office still generates revenue and profits.

Xbox is something that could develop because it was decoupled from MS Office. I think it is mostly a publicity vehicle for MS, something to make them seem cool to the young people. Like beer sponsorship in sports. Kids aren't supposed to drink, so there is no immediate profit, but it is important that your beer is what they order the first time they are in a bar. Whether Xbone makes a profit or loss is insignificant in the grand scheme of MS.

If a MS phone is eventually a layer in the market, it will probably be because of MS Surface, which of course was originally an actual playable surface. Of course, it is unclear whether MS is going to put MS Office in jeopardy by actually pushing MS Surface and MS Metro on the general population. I see corporate just moving to MS Windows 7 now. I can see many moving away from MS if they don't give up like they did with Vista. And if they do that, then the phone is dead.

better idea (1)

slashmydots (2189826) | about a year ago | (#44392603)

They really need to adopt "Fire Balmer" and "Fire everyone responsible for Windows 8" and "abandon mobile" and "release a Windows 9 that doesn't suck" or they're bankrupt. "Time is of the essence" just means rush something and release a half done, half thought out product.

Smart Companies (3, Insightful)

Nyder (754090) | about a year ago | (#44392607)

Don't let MS buy them.

Re:Smart Companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392999)

Don't let MS buy them.

Too late for that wish. They were bought the minute Elop stepped in.

Re:Smart Companies (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393513)

Smart Companies (Score:2) by Nyder (754090) Alter Relationship on 2013-07-26 12:33 (#44392607) Homepage Don't let MS buy them.

Companies hate it when you anthropomorphize them. Smart people often sell companies to Microsoft. If they're heading into a new area, you can be assimilated or destroyed. Most people prefer to not lose everything.

gee.... (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392637)

"it needs Microsoft to step up and begin innovating" ...I really hope they are not holding their breath.....

yeah you liked that short term cash you got (2)

postmortem (906676) | about a year ago | (#44392653)

with the "Deal"
now we are on long term consequences, and everybody told you it is not a good idea to stick with !Win phone and nothing else.

"Apps" are for kids and geeks (0)

DogDude (805747) | about a year ago | (#44392687)

"Apps" blah blah blah blah. I've got a couple of Windows Phones, and I really don't care about "apps". I use it to get stuff done, and it's much easier to get stuff done than people who have to go through their laundry list of "apps" on the other two devices. Windows Phones will become more popular once the "app" fad is over, and people (growups who aren't geeks), as a whole, decide that they're tired of dicking around with their phones all the time.

Re:"Apps" are for kids and geeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392817)

Odd that you took so much space to passive-aggressively state how "immature" not-Windows users are, given (whether you believe it or not) one of the major reasons for the staying power of Windows in the consumer arena is the wildly immature, escapism-laden video games it can play...

Re:"Apps" are for kids and geeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393021)

Odd that you took so much space to passive-aggressively state how "immature" not-Windows users are, given (whether you believe it or not) one of the major reasons for the staying power of Windows in the consumer arena is the wildly immature, escapism-laden video games it can play...

Which I find very odd. Windows Phone platform would definitely need that escapist magic from Microsoft Studios to obtain exclusive software portfolio for the kid in all of us.

Re:"Apps" are for kids and geeks (1)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year ago | (#44392869)

why didn't you buy some 50-80 bucks S40's? what stuff is it exactly that you use the phone to get done, facebook chatting? Nokias non "smartphone"(though still app capable) have done okay.

you don't exactly have to dick around with apps on android either if you don't want - most have stuff like quick access to wifi sharing without "apps"(3rd partly loaded content).

yeah, windows phone is ok if you never wanted a "smartphone" to begin with but then it is utterly pointless.

Re:"Apps" are for kids and geeks (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392905)

a terminal emulator is an app, a vnc session is an app, spreadsheets are an app. File browsers are an app. Barcode scanners are an app. Navigation Systems are an app.

microsoft makes this stuff as difficult as possible on their platform. Can you even map shares on a Win Phone? Can you use bluetooth data implements with winphone (none support it BTW, they support android and IOS great though)? Can you get raw GPS data on win phone?

apps are just a symptom that microsoft was so interested on the lifestyle market, that they forgo about those who use their phones and other mobile devices for work.

Oh god... and HERE is the disconnect people (1)

SmallFurryCreature (593017) | about a year ago | (#44393087)

The MS Phone fanboy is an amazing critter, he can come up with a new excuse at the drop of hat.

  • The NEXT version will fix everything
  • Nobody copy pastes anyway
  • The NEXT phone with stats of last generation phones of the competition will BLOW the competition away, when it launches in a years time
  • Once the phones start to sell, the apps will come
    • And now the king of the crazies. People will stop wanting apps and entertainment on their phones any day now so then Windows Phone will sell because their old smartphone more then capable of NOT being used for apps and entertainment and just making calls will need to be replaced...

      What?

      If people get tired of their smartphone... why would they buy another one? Oh I get it, they are tired of having a choice of apps to install and instead want a store that has a more limited selection... yeah... that happens. I do it all the time, I am at my local supermarket and think "screw this choice, I am off to the little convenience store at the train station".

      Fanboys in general tend to be a bit blind but MS Phone fanboys like the parent are insane. And for that matter childish. Basically a guy with the nick "DogDude" posting on a geek/nerd site is complaing about people not being grownup and/or being to nerdy/geeky.

      It reminds me a bit of the Windows fanboys complaining Slashdot is to Linux friendly. Well piss of then to your own website... oh wait, there isn't one that is any fun. DogDude must hate this place filled with people who laugh at his phone but he has nowhere else to go because his mom won't take him across state to the other guy who bought a MS phone.

      Sucks to be you DogDuge but don't worry, one day you will have bought the hip phone that makes you the envy of all... well not really but keep the dream alive, you and Ballmer and Elop, the true believers!

Re:"Apps" are for kids and geeks (2)

DMUTPeregrine (612791) | about a year ago | (#44393795)

A computer without programs to run on it is pretty useless. Some come built in, some are added after the fact, but they're all just computer programs. "Apps" are the entire point of having a smartphone. Having a good set of them available, both by default and as additional downloads one of the main reasons computer platforms succeed. People use Windows on desktops because it runs their programs. Macs and Linux are less popular, because the same programs aren't all available. People buy game consoles that have games, and don't buy the ones that don't have games available. People buy phones with a good set of usable apps, and don't buy the ones without. Calling them "apps" or "applications" or "programs" is just semantics.

Hmmm (1)

AdmV0rl0n (98366) | about a year ago | (#44392719)

Nokia had the opportunity to examine the OS up close I am sure before putting all their eggs in the basket. Saying now that the OS isn't what they wanted is different from Symbian how?

And they dumped Symbian.

Nokia isn't very innovative. I have hosts of their phones. And I have their earlier tablets. Molasses moves faster, and any development or updating was based around an old school of update slow, if at all, and avoid anything dramatic. Riddled by 'buy the next handset' if you want more - no company wrote off their newer stuff faster.

The N900 (with an updated screen) could have been the basis for an ongoing linux based phone - but not at molassess snail rate development. Nokia understand how to make hardware. The part they have utterly failed to grasp is that in the end, its the software that runs on the tin that actually ends up mattering much more than they believed it did.

Android and Iphone have brutally changed the old landscape. The older school mentality has no place left, and they will be evolved out. Throwing huge gasps of air (41MP cameras) grafted onto Phones with systems people don't want won't stop the drowning end.

Nokie still ship a lot of low end phones - That in the end might be there best market placement

I only know 2 people who bought windows phones (4, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392777)

One is a guy who used to teach MCSE classes. The other a grandma out at the community garden.

The MCSE guy won't say anything bad about MS, but he did ditch the windows phone and get an android one.

The grandma didn't know what she was purchasing, and is very disappointed that none of the things her daughter can do with her phone (iphone) can run on the windows phone.

Tiny sample size, but that is about all there is. Looking at the logs for the captive portal at work (10,000 students), windows phone doesn't even make up 1% of logins.

Its dead MS. Give it up.

As for Nokia, they are moribund too. Terrible management. Not sure anything can prevent Nokia from becoming a zombie patent troll now.

Summary: Microsoft is holding us back (5, Insightful)

randallman (605329) | about a year ago | (#44392779)

So the gist of this article is that Nokia is doing fantastic things with hardware, but Microsoft isn't keeping up and holding Nokia back. If Nokia had control of the OS, they'd be in much better shape. They would have this freedom with Android AND instant access to its software market. And Maemo/Meego was a fine OS (I owned the n800 and n900), which shipped with Android app compatibility. It's clear that Windows Phone was a horrible choice. How could they not see this coming when everyone was yelling at them telling them they were making a mistake?

Re:Summary: Microsoft is holding us back (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393019)

> How could they not see this coming when everyone was yelling at them telling them they were making a mistake?

Because Elop believed in his company. And I'm not talking about Nokia.

Re:Summary: Microsoft is holding us back (1)

randallman (605329) | about a year ago | (#44393071)

Correction: Android compatibility never happened. I thought it shipped on the n9 with MeeGo "Harmattan" (which I did not own), but it did not. Apologies.

Re:Summary: Microsoft is holding us back (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393353)

Only sensible reason I can think of is that the biggest shareholders of Nokia told the executives to take the deal with Microsoft. They might own Microsoft stock as well, so they wouldn't mind destroying Nokia to make Microsoft succeed in mobile world.

Re:Summary: Microsoft is holding us back (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393579)

How could they not see this coming when everyone was yelling at them telling them they were making a mistake?

Because psychopaths like Elop are very manipulative and charming.

Re:Summary: Microsoft is holding us back (1)

evilviper (135110) | about a year ago | (#44393729)

It's clear that Windows Phone was a horrible choice. How could they not see this coming when everyone was yelling at them telling them they were making a mistake?

They might have been blinded by the billions of dollars Microsoft gave them, right when Nokia was in serious trouble and desperate for cash...

Nokia was making bad decisions for YEARS at that point, which got them into the trouble they were facing. Is it any wonder they would make yet another bad decision? Particularly when things had gotten so bad that there was no easy out, and Microsoft offered a magical fantasy-land answer that solved all their problems and brought them back to their previous dominant position.

Just pretend Nokia went bankrupt shortly before Elop took over, and move on with your life. They're just an animated corpse.

Nokia went in with eyes open (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44392781)

Nokia went in with eyes open. They took money from m$ft and partnered. microsoft is the new corporate master, Nokia the slave. Zune tanked. So what. Surface tanked. So what. Phone7 is tanking. So what. So long as Windows and office keep selling, m$ft has nothing to worry about. Even if phone7 dies, at least they took Nokia out of the Android ecosystem. Google can't buy Nokia if Nokia is already thrall to m$ft. And now Nokia is telling m$ft "we can't sell any phones because your product is crap". And m$ft is looking at Nokia and going "what? We paid you money, we have an agreement. If you can't sell any phones, that's your problem." I have no doubts that someone at Nokia took the money with every expectation that the $1Billion would spell the end of the company; they took the money, got a massive bonus and retirement package, then left the company, and don't care.

What MS must do is become less PROPRIETARY (2, Interesting)

argoff (142580) | about a year ago | (#44392983)

All Microsoft problems really indirectly boil down to one problem. They try to be a licensing company, rather than a technology solution company.
This is why google nailed them in both search and phone and now tablet. Even IBM got the message, and moved toward a Linux datacenter strategy.

I just amazes me to see all their "reforms" all their "restructuring" all their products that have been doomed to fail, and they still don't get it.

= Nokia: Windows Phone Is a Failure (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393011)

Thanks for saying it out loud, Nokia.

I can dream ... (1)

Frag-A-Muffin (5490) | about a year ago | (#44393053)

I wish Nokia would just use/buy up Jolla (Sailfish OS).

Beautiful hardware meets beautiful software. They'd make lovely babies. Babies that'd I'd buy in a heartbeat.

Just dreaming out loud.

Logical fallacy (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393127)

Microsoft's priorities are Windows, Office, Xbox, and Surface. Windows Phone is no where near the top and that is the main reason why it has failed to make the impact many hoped for in the three years it has been around.

Were it in the top it would still not do well. Like the submitter said, Windows is in the top, but MS is still screwing it up. Same with Xbox and Surface.

Microsoft (3, Insightful)

BlindRobin (768267) | about a year ago | (#44393163)

No one consciously chooses a Microsoft [product|platform|environment] on it's merits alone. If it is chosen it is largely, if not entirely, because of external factors ,the dominant of which is market dominance. Microsoft have had a terrible history of being slow on the pivot with regard to changing markets. They are in actual peril and in fear of being bypassed by more agile competitors even those with their own problems of inertia.

Need to crawl under a rock and die. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year ago | (#44393403)

Microsoft needs to get out of the hardware market. The only successful hardware platform they have, (as much as I loathe it), is Xbox, and they lose money on the consoles, (so does Sony, they make it up on game sales). I probably can't mention the name Zune here without causing hysterical laughter, the surface isn't selling at half-price. Whenever I get a work phone with windows on it, I have to stop myself from throwing it out of a window.

Just give up and go back to making an OS that was at least better then your current models.

nokia innovation (2)

Joseph Dickinson (2998183) | about a year ago | (#44393485)

I think Nokia needs to create programs that will make the windows phone attractive to buyers. The phone is truly amazing, but the price tag is high. Maybe Nokia can make a cheaper smartphone with more memory etc, and stop wasting it's time blaming others for it's own short sightedness.

Correction (1)

Azure Flash (2440904) | about a year ago | (#44393539)

Headline should be "Microsoft Must Evolve To Make a Success"

Microsoft is missing a key ingredient. (3, Interesting)

intermodal (534361) | about a year ago | (#44393797)

Apple and the Android groups have one major advantage over Windows Phone: Each has a stunning amount of control over what they are releasing. HTC, Samsung, et al don't care what the market share of Android itself is so long as people want their phone. Not their OS, their device.

At the same time, the iOS and Android devices pay nothing per unit for the privelege of running their device on that platform. To develop your own flavor of android for your device is cheap and attainable. Drivers may be proprietary, but the chipmakers have nothing to lose by letting you use them. Even for iOS, Apple owns it and can install it as many times as they like without incurring additional cost. Microsoft, you can be sure, takes a different view. In fact, as of March, Nokia disclosed that for the remaining life of their existing Windows Phone contract, they have to pay Microsoft â500 million.I've got to admit that odds are, they'll come out in the black on this proposition in the end. But certainly with their pockets â500 million lighter than if they'd sold the same number of Android phones at the same price point. At â10 a license, that's 50 million units, and at â20 a license, that's 25 million units. If they sell only 10 million units, that's â50 per unit.

You don't get deep pockets by giving away unnecessary slices of your pie.

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