Greg's bite: Vista Mobile 7, Microsoft dud
TweetFollow Us on Twitter

Greg's bite: Vista Mobile 7, Microsoft dud

By Greg Mills

In the extremely high stakes competition in smart phone operating systems, Microsoft's new Mobile OS appears to be a stone loser. This is for a number of indisputable reasons.  

The expensive advertising program (rumored to be half a billion dollars) which will be launched soon, and the efforts of various hardware companies and cell phone carriers rallied to support Vista 7 are likely to be a doomed and completely wasted effort. This will certainly end Microsoft's presence in the mobile market, which includes both smart phones and slate computers.  

The future of computers is the smartphone and slate market, and everyone knows it. I think Microsoft is toast. Goldman Sachs already downgraded Microsoft stock to neutral, saying "the company needed to show some progress on mobile devices such as the smartphone and a device to compete with the iPad." Goldman analyst Sarah Friar wrote in her report, "The company needs an immediately successful Windows Phone 7 launch"  

Sorry, Sarah when the air in the launch party balloons go down, the market will likely severely punish the gang that can't shoot straight ... again. Short Microsoft, go long on Apple. I predict Goldman will downgrade Microsoft to sell, soon.

The street had publicly laid down clear expectations that true innovation will be required for their new Mobile OS to be relevant and, again, Microsoft has failed to preform. Zune, Ken, Vista and now Mobile Vista 7 have all failed to offer anything really new or compelling to excite consumers or investors in Microsoft products or stock. The issue is not as much what the new platform amounts to, but the poor timing and lack of compelling new features.  

Even if it doesn't crash all the time, or have serious worm or virus problems, is there a market for another major mobile OS? Timing is everything. The notion of Cinderella coming to the ball at 11:45 p.m. and winning the heart of the prince before rushing off at midnight is a true fairy tale in the fast developing smartphone and slate computer market. 

Had this new platform been launched shortly after iPhone took off, it would be different. Had this mobile OS been launched about the same time as Google's Android OS, Vista 7 might have found a market. It is just too late for something that is not really compelling. Windows Mobile 6.5 is expected to remain the Microsoft platform for business smart phones while the new Vista 7 will be the consumer smartphone platform. Neither platform is compelling.  

I read a number of breathlessly excited articles about why Apple's iOS is toast and Microsoft is the toaster. Not to worry, Apple. A closer examination and a careful review of the cell phone screen shots under Vista 7 tell another story: that of Microsoft relabeling Apple innovation and calling it their own.  

While they went back to the drawing board, they didn't have any new ideas to embellish their new operating system. A new home screen, a user interface that is more graphical, "tiles" instead of iOS style buttons, interfacing with Xbox live over the Internet, the old Zune interface, social network integration and connection with cloud content such as photo albums and a hardware Bing search button isn't compelling enough to rescue Vista Mobile 7. A lot of the features are likely covered by Apple patents -- and you know Apple will not stand by and see their technology stolen. It would be hard to imagine any warm fuzzy feelings between the companies at this point.

A few years back Microsoft had around a 50% market share in smart phone OS, according to Gartner Research. They now predict that by 2014 Microsoft will be down to a 3.9% market share, which is effectively out of the market. Add the dismal OS share to the lack of a robust app developer base and you spell disaster for Microsoft in the next big thing in computers, where you would have expected them to lead.  

Adding further distress to Microsoft's situation, the new Mobile OS is not up to speed for running slate computers. The Xbox is upside-down to the tune of billions of dollars, so the only thing keeping Microsoft profitable right now is the old Windows OS for the PC franchise, which is also losing market share to Apple's Mac OS.  

Even if the new Vista Mobile 7 OS platform was up to speed with Apple and Google's Mobile OS the "late to the party" contender is woefully short on apps. With roughly 250,000 for Apple, 90,000 for Google's Android, the new wonder Mobile OS from Microsoft weights in at about 2000 apps. Microsoft has worked hard to interest developers in their new platform -- with little success. There are issues with any platform that upsets developers -- and everyone knows what a pain in the rearward parts Microsoft can be.
 
From what I read, the music player portion of Vista Mobile is just a warmed over Zune which has already been panned by the market place. Try offering to buy any kid on the street a Zune or an iPod as a gift and see which they prefer. Most of them wouldn't know what a Zune is, while iPods are stolen at gun point.

The way you open apps or choose major functions in the Vista Mobile OS 7 is by touching "Tiles" instead of buttons. Gee, what is the difference? The size of the button won't make it new technology or compelling enough to matter. Adding information to the button faces sounds like Apple's badges to me. I can see the legal department at Apple warming up the copy machines to file suit for patent infringement.  

One Microsoft supporter mentioned in an article that the tiles amounted to files where more than one app could be accessed while the Apple iOS required you to drag and drop apps into button open files which he called "laborious"? Would you rather let Microsoft presort your apps for you and be stuck with what they defaulted to or be able to customize your files?

With the market share of the game community Xbox has the effect of offering to hook up their smartphones to Xbox Live, which sounds like something only a part of the Xbox community would do, and that won't help much. Live Internet connected games is certainly not an exclusive for Xbox and not something that will drive smart phone sales to a completely new smart phone platform with all the baggage that brings to mind.

Explorer -- or something called Explorer -- is the mobile web browser. Explorer is like most of the Microsoft franchise. It is in decline and is down to about 50% of the market from 90% a few years ago and for good reasons. Other browsers have become preferred over Explorer despite the advantage of coming free with Windows in most any OS package or preloaded on a PC you might buy. No fresh advantage here.

Email is email and advantages or disadvantages of particular programs and are really slight.  Apple is now able to do the secure email tricks enterprise demands that used to be exclusive to Microsoft Office. 

MS Office applications may work better with Vista 7 than previous Microsoft smartphone operating systems, but remember, they expect the new mobile OS to be the consumer version of their product. As Ballmer himself put it, Microsoft missed a generation of smartphone software.  That "missed" opportunity is going to be punished brutally.  

Some people paid as much as $890 for a Windows 6.5 smartphone six months ago that will be an electronic dinosaur tomorrow when Vista 7 is launched. The contract you sign with your carrier is not canceled when the phone you get is discontinued. Ask the people stuck with two-year contracts to operate their Kin phone. There is a serious risk in buying a Vista 7 smartphone, and I think a lot of smart phone buyers are going to hedge their bets and buy Apple or Android phones to avoid Vista 7.  

Stuxnet worm; Iran executes staffers

Intelligence sources report that the Russians who fled Iran had good reason to go home ASAP, as Iran began last week to execute "a number" of nuclear staff members suspected of sabotage using the Windows Stuxnet worm. Some of the executed staff members "have access to information about Iran's plans for foreign purchases and commercial affairs." Meaning, they had information that if leaked to the enemies could have allowed the Stuxnet worm to infect computer systems.  

It is more likely, according to some experts, that USB flash drives, which are very common and cheap, might well have been the easy way for someone to secretly introduce the malware into Windows machines. A handful of free USB drives, handed out to the right people, would have been enough to seed the worm without the staffers ever knowing they infected the systems. The worm spreads wildly, and then the fun and games begins in the control systems.

Iran is now admitting that the new nuclear reactor will not be turn on anytime soon. The damage to the plutonium centrifuges may also be much worse than they have admitted.
With information leaking out of Iran that nuclear experts have been killed (likely not in gentle ways) will tend to make it much harder to hire foreigners and recruit Iranian scientists alike. Being tortured to death for mere suspicion of accidentally introducing a Windows worm to a PC is not your typical work related injury.  

That's Greg's Bite for today

(Greg Mills, is a Faux Artist in Kansas City. Formerly a new product R&D man for the paint sundry market, he holds 11 US patents. He's working on a solar energy startup, www.CottageIndustrySolar.com using a patent pending process of turning waste dual pane glass into thermal solar panels used to heat water. Greg writes for intellectual web sites and Mac related issues. See Greg's art web site at www.gregmills.info ; His email is gregmills@mac.com )

 

Community Search:
MacTech Search:

Software Updates via MacUpdate

Adobe Premiere Pro CC 2015 9.0.1 - Digit...
Premiere Pro CC 2015 is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $19.99/month (or $9.99/month if you're a previous Premiere Pro customer). Premiere Pro CS6 is still available for... Read more
Adobe After Effects CC 2015 13.5.1 - Cre...
After Effects CC 2015 is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $19.99/month (or $9.99/month if you're a previous After Effects customer). After Effects CS6 is still available... Read more
Adobe Creative Cloud 2.2.0.129 - Access...
Adobe Creative Cloud costs $49.99/month (or less if you're a previous Creative Suite customer). Creative Suite 6 is still available for purchase (without a monthly plan) if you prefer. Introducing... Read more
Tower 2.2.3 - Version control with Git m...
Tower is a powerful Git client for OS X that makes using Git easy and more efficient. Users benefit from its elegant and comprehensive interface and a feature set that lets them enjoy the full power... Read more
Apple Java 2015-001 - For OS X 10.7, 10....
Apple Java for OS X 2015-001 installs the legacy Java 6 runtime for OS X 10.11 El Capitan, OS X 10.10 Yosemite, OS X 10.9 Mavericks, OS X 10.8 Mountain Lion, and OS X 10.7 Lion. This package is... Read more
Adobe Muse CC 2015 2015.0.1 - Design and...
Muse CC 2015 is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $14.99/month (or $9.99/month if you're a previous Muse customer). Muse CS6 is still available for purchase (without a... Read more
Adobe Illustrator CC 2015 19.1.0 - Profe...
Illustrator CC 2015 is available as part of Adobe Creative Cloud for as little as $19.99/month (or $9.99/month if you're a previous Illustrator customer). Illustrator CS6 is still available for... Read more
Corel Painter 14.1.0.1105 - Digital art...
Corel Painter helps you create astonishing art in a variety of media. Paint with vivid oil paints, fluid water colors, and earthy charcoals. Corel Painter flawlessly recreates the tones and textures... Read more
Pacifist 3.5.4 - Install individual file...
Pacifist opens up .pkg installer packages, .dmg disk images, .zip, .tar. tar.gz, .tar.bz2, .pax, and .xar archives and more, and lets you extract or install individual files out of them. This is... Read more
Dropbox 3.8.4 - Cloud backup and synchro...
Dropbox is an application that creates a special Finder folder that automatically syncs online and between your computers. It allows you to both backup files and keep them up-to-date between systems... Read more

Mazes of Karradash (Games)
Mazes of Karradash 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $1.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: The city of Karradash is under attack: the monsters of the Shadow Realms are emerging from the depths.No adventurer is... | Read more »
Battle Golf is the Newest Game from the...
Wrassling was a pretty weird - and equally great - little wressling game. Now the developers, Folmer Kelly and Colin Lane, have turned their attention to a different sport: golfing. This is gonna be weird. [Read more] | Read more »
Qbert Rebooted has the App Store Going...
The weird little orange... whatever... is back, mostly thanks to that movie which shall remain nameless (you know the one). But anyway it's been "rebooted" and now you can play the fancy-looking Qbert Rebooted on iOS devices. [Read more] | Read more »
Giant Monsters Run Amok in The Sandbox...
So The Sandbox has just hit version number 1.99987 (seriously), and it's added a lot more stuff. Just like every other update, really. [Read more] | Read more »
Fish Pond Park (Games)
Fish Pond Park 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $2.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: Nurture an idyllic slice of tourist's heaven into the top nature spot of the nation, furnishing it with a variety of... | Read more »
Look after Baby Buddy on your Apple Watc...
Parigami Gold is the new premium version of the match three puzzler that includes Apple Watch support and all new content. You won't simply be sliding tiles around on your wrist, the Apple Watch companion app is an all new mini-game in itself. You'... | Read more »
Swallow all of your opponents as the big...
Eat all of the opposition and become the largest ball in Battle of Balls now available in the App Store and Google Play. Battle of Balls pits you against other opponents in real time and challenges you to eat more balls and grow larger than all of... | Read more »
PAC-MAN Championship Edition DX (Games)
PAC-MAN Championship Edition DX 1.0.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $4.99, Version: 1.0.0 (iTunes) Description: It’s Your World. EAT IT! Get ready for more ghost chain gobbling and frantic action in PAC-MAN® CE-DX! The... | Read more »
incurve (Games)
incurve 1.0 Device: iOS Universal Category: Games Price: $.99, Version: 1.0 (iTunes) Description: Get ready for 2 different gravities Goal is to hit as many white dots on your way up.When you're touching the screen, the dots have a... | Read more »
Crossy Road has its Own Merch Store Now....
Do you like Crossy Road? I mean do you really like Crossy Road? Well then you're in luck! Hipster Whale has opened up a Crossy Road store, so you can show off your fandom via official T-shirts. [Read more] | Read more »

Price Scanner via MacPrices.net

Sale! 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air for $1099,...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 1.6GHz/256GB MacBook Air on sale for $1099 including free shipping plus NY tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model. Read more
iPad mini 4 To Be Upgraded To iPad Air 2 Spec...
There’s a certain inevitability about making Apple product predictions this time of year. Come September, we can pretty reliably count on the release of refreshed iPhones, along with the iOS 9... Read more
Apple restocks refurbished Mac minis for up t...
The Apple Store has restocked Apple Certified Refurbished 2014 Mac minis, with models available starting at $419. Apple’s one-year warranty is included with each mini, and shipping is free: - 1.4GHz... Read more
13-inch 2.5GHz MacBook Pro on sale for $899,...
Best Buy has the 13″ 2.5GHz MacBook Pro available for $899.99 on their online store. Choose free shipping or free instant local store pickup (if available). Their price is $200 off MSRP. Price is... Read more
21-inch 2.9GHz iMac on sale for $1299, save $...
Best Buy has the 21″ 2.9GHz iMac on sale today for $1299.99 on their online store. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Their price is $200 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest... Read more
Free Image Sizer 1.3 for iOS Offers Photo Edi...
Xi’An, China based G-Power has announced the release of Image Sizer 1.3 for the iPhone, iPad, and iPod touch, an important update to their free photo editing app. Image Sizer’s collection of easy to... Read more
Sale! 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air for $899,...
B&H Photo has the 13″ 1.6GHz/128GB MacBook Air on sale for $899 including free shipping plus NY tax only. Their price is $100 off MSRP, and it’s the lowest price available for this model. Read more
13-inch Retina MacBook Pros on sale for $100...
Best Buy has 13-inch Retina MacBook Pros on sale for $100 off MSRP on their online store. Choose free shipping or free local store pickup (if available). Prices are for online orders only, in-store... Read more
Will BMW’s i3 Electric Vehicle Be The Automo...
The German-language business journal Manager Magazin’s Michael Freitag reports that Apple and the German performance/luxury automaker Bayerishe Motoren Werke (BMW) are back at far-reaching... Read more
Sale! $250 off 15-inch Retina MacBook Pro, $2...
B&H Photo has lowered their price for the 15″ 2.2GHz Retina MacBook Pro to $1749, or $250 off MSRP. Shipping is free, and B&H charges NY sales tax only. They have the 27″ 3.3GHz 5K iMac on... Read more

Jobs Board

*Apple* Customer Experience (ACE) Leader - A...
…management to deliver on business objectives Training partner store staff on Apple products, services, and merchandising guidelines Coaching partner store staff on Read more
Project Manager - *Apple* Pay Security - Ap...
**Job Summary** The Apple Pay Security team is seeking a highly organized, results-driven Project Manager to drive the development of Apple Pay Security. If you are Read more
*Apple* TV Product Design Internship (Spring...
…the mechanical design effort associated with creating world-class products with the Apple TV PD Group. Responsibilities will include working closely with manufacturing, Read more
*Apple* Watch SW Application Project Manager...
**Job Summary** The Apple Watch software team is looking for an Application Engineering Project Manager to work on new projects for Apple . The successful candidate Read more
*Apple* Retail - Multiple Positions (US) - A...
Sales Specialist - Retail Customer Service and Sales Transform Apple Store visitors into loyal Apple customers. When customers enter the store, you're also the Read more
All contents are Copyright 1984-2011 by Xplain Corporation. All rights reserved. Theme designed by Icreon.