The mobile market is no place for wimps; competition is very steep and very fierce, and even giants with deep pockets like Microsoft
can’t seem to compete. According to Forbes, Windows Phones are actually in jeopardy of disappearing in the U.S. and in Europe after sales of Nokia Lumia
phones (essentially the flagship devices for Windows Phone 8
) dropped to half a million units in North America last quarter.
’s iPhone still does brisk business at the high end, and the forthcoming rumored “low cost” iPhone
will no doubt take a bite out of midrange sales. Android
is flourishing thanks in large part to Samsung and its many, many handsets and tablets running the OS at a variety of price points. To date, there’s just not much room for Windows Phone, and a large part of the equation--app development--hasn’t been a strength of the platform. With such low market share, it’s not that appealing for devs to create for Windows Phone.
It’s really too bad, because in general, more options create more competition and better options for consumers, and specifically, Windows Phone 8 is a fine OS. (It’s likely that Windows Phone has suffered a low rate of adoption because it’s big brothers, Windows RT and Windows 8, have done little to interest consumers.)
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Further, Nokia knows how to make excellent handsets, but the company bet big on Windows Phone 8, and it appears that the gamble isn’t going to pay off. It will truly be sad for the mobile industry and consumers if both Windows Phone and Nokia drown in a sea of Android and iOS phones. There’s still time to turn things around, of course, but amid the whole of the ongoing Windows RT and Windows 8 debacles, Microsoft might not be able to pull it off, even with a strong line of handsets from Nokia aiding the effort.