I Am Passionate, But Can’t Use Windows Phone

Two of my friends have faced off recently about Windows Phone with different views so I figured I would chime in as well. Matt Miller, James Kendrick, and I are all friends from the similar background online. We’re all very passionate about mobile, all three of us were Mobius members, we each have a PDA background, and James and I were Microsoft MVPs at one point.

James started off with “Windows Phone: The passionless platform“ and Matt followed up with “I am passionate about Windows Phone, just give it a try“. Before those that don’t know either of them personally, they both give every platform a fair shake and both have spent time with the old Windows Mobile before the iPhone came along. James says that he appreciates and likes Windows Phone but the platform just doesn’t provide him with a level of excitement that he gets from Android and iOS. Matt comes behind him and says that you have to use Windows Phone for more than a couple of weeks to appreciate the platform. He says it doesn’t have the “Mindshare” the others do, but those that have adopted Windows Mobile are passionate.

As the only one of us that spent 6 years as a Windows Mobile/Phone MVP and the only one of us to have run a Windows Mobile focused website, I am in the middle on this discussion. You would think I would lean more towards Windows Phone than Matt even. Truth is, I want Windows Phone to succeed and I do want Microsoft to get back in the race, but there are several things holding them back. I want to get behind Windows Phone, but it’s tough to when I can’t even use a quality Windows Phone with my current carrier. Sure, I could leave Verizon and go back to AT&T, but I already spent $1,000 in early termination and new customer fees moving my family to Verizon in December. I can’t go back now. I know that this is a personal problem, but It shouldn’t be. Verizon and Sprint should have more than 1 token, outdated device in their portfolio. This isn’t my fault.

To the passion part of this. I have the passion. I want to use Windows Phone but I can’t.

  • Android, while very versatile doesn’t excited me.
  • iOS definitely doesn’t excite me.
  • Windows Phone does excite me.

The good things that Microsoft has going for it with Windows Phone are Nokia and a unique OS that looks awesome, is easy to understand, and makes some tasks 10x simplier than the same tasks on the other platforms. If AT&T and Nokia weren’t behind Windows Phone as much as they are, I sincerely believe Microsoft would be in a bad place right now. They aren’t exactly in a happy place yet, but they are moving forward some.

What I don’t like about Windows Phone has nothing to do with the OS itself. It has to do with the specs and the marketing. While Nokia is marketing to what seems to be hip teens overseas, Microsoft is hopping on Oprah and Kelly type shows pushing the OS to “Mommies”. That’s fine, but don’t dumb down the OS down to appeal to soccer moms please. With the recent “Dumbing Down” of the hardware requirements, it’s clear that Microsoft is giving up on the power user in my opinion.

Like Matt and James, I have used pretty much every platform for extended periods of time. I will be honest and say that I have used Windows Phone the least between what I consider the main three. Part of that was during Windows Phone’s 1st year on the block. There were too many little things that were left out that needed to be there for it to be my daily driver. During that year, I used Android and iOS. I used the iPhone 4 for a few months and the Motorola Atrix for the rest of that time. During this time, I had the Samsung Focus and popped the Sim in every once in a while. After Windows Phone 7.5 (Mango) dropped, I gave the HTC Titan a try before returning to Android and ultimately leaving AT&T for Verizon. Now I use the Samsung Galaxy Nexus. I have put my work sim in the Titan on occasion, but I am really waiting for the Nokia Lumia 900 to be released to use with my work sim or possibly get another AT&T line in addition to my Verizon line. The Nokia Lumia 900 is the Windows Phone “Flagship” phone I have been waiting on.

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Unlike James, I have passion for Windows Phone but don’t use it. I think a lot like Matt in regards to Windows Phone.

I will say this again. Verizon and Sprint have to get behind Windows Phone for it to win in the US. I sincerely believe that Windows Phone does not have the power that Apple had to get people to switch carriers to use it. Instead of going backwards in hardware specifications, move forward. While it’s been proven that a phone with a single core processor can run Windows Phone as smoothly as a dual core running Android, why stop at that? Go Big, Go Dual, Go Quad. Give us more internal memory instead of making the carriers happy by pushing cloud storage!

Microsoft – I am passionate, but you guys are making it hard. Heck, I even made an offer to get a Windows Phone Tattoo.

Nokia – Thanks for helping Microsoft. Without you, they’d be in trouble.

Comments

  1. satish_appasani says

    In Asia, Nokia has a very high reputation for quality phones. This is going to help Windows Phone a lot.

    The low spec phones will help gain market share. Nokia 610 at INR 11000/- in India is cheaper than any other dumb Android phone available in the market.

    • Chris Leckness says

      I agree that marketshare can and will be gained with lower end phones. From a business standpoint for Microsoft, this is good. I would hate to see Windows Phone get dubbed as a feature phone platform status as a result. Does that matter to those that like WinPho? No. I just want to see Microsoft get the credit they deserve for creating a unique platform.

  2. guest says

    What do you think of the upgradeability of the current Lumia line-up (including 900) to WP8? If the transition to WP8 means changing the kernel of the OS, the upgrade path is probably far from guaranteed. How many buyers will be willing to lock themselves into a 2Y contract with a device that will be a non-upgradeable lemon by year-end?

    Also – isn’t it slightly worrying that Microsoft’s Windows Phone goes from one to another next big thing, and every time its market share halves (WM6.5 -> WP7 -> NoDo -> Mango -> (Tango ->) Apollo and the platform’s market share goes 20% to 2%…?)

    • Chris Leckness says

      I didn’t realize Windows Phone ever had a 20% market share. 

      As for upgrades to 8, the jury is out but I sincerely believe their will be a upgrade path available.

  3. the person says

    Other than build quality the Lumia won’t really be that great.  You, like every other hack I’ve read an article from, just won’t shit or get off the pot.  You have options on ANY US network, and even though the CDMA phones are on middling hardware, the OS experience is the same…however it’s not going to be exponentially greater with the Nokia.  I’m sure when the Nokia does come out you will hem and haw you like you’ve been doing with the Focus and Titan which are both 2 EXTREMELY nice phones.  If you had this relationship in real life your string of gfs would have kicked you to the curb a long time ago for being non committal…forget any passion.

    • Chris Leckness says

      Other than build quality, what else is there? The OS should be equally as satisfying regardless of the hardware. The Nokia build quality and the sexiness of the Lumia 900 are what’s pulling me in.

  4. Rodney E. Jones says

    I love WP, and fully support it. I do agree that Verizon and Sprint are PERTINENT to WP’s success, at this stage. We have to remember though, Marketing is the root cause of WP’s problems. Marketing will solve any and every issue WP has. Trust me, if you think of a issues you have with WP I can tell you a solution where Marketing can assist in a fix. And , if I can’t find one now WP8 will have one. But, none of this matters if nobody ever hears about WP. I hate to hear people say “knowbody wants WP, the people aren’t buying WP, it has failed” …. The truth is that WP hasn’t entered the race fully, enough people haven’t seen it to turn it down for us to say it has failed. It hasn’t yet given itself the chance to fail, almost like someone who is afraid to take a risk because of the possibility of a negative outcome, but never having the chance to win. For Microsoft that risk, oddly, would be to market the phones properly, and see how the public reacts to them.. Weird right? This shouldn’t be a pain, it’s supposed to be a joy because we all know the product is good, but it’s the best kept secret which is bad…. I guess MS has failed in this aspect, but luckily the WP name is not tarnished. Marketing has been WP’s issue from day one, way back in Nov. 2010. All the talk about WP in every forum, websites, blog, newspaper, book, magazine, is pointlessness if it’s not about how Windows Phone is not being properly marketed. Marketing is the root cause of WP,s market share, and adoption, issues. It’s a great phone and there are Millions who would love to have one… They just don’t know it yet…LOL

  5. Ablonseno says

    AT&T service is awful – it’s why I got rid of my first iphone.  Customer service is horrid too, backed up by surveys, the worst of the top 4 US providers.

    That said, I was interested in Win phone until I messed around with W8CP.  It’s pretty bad and turned me off to tiles and random gestures. 

  6. Christopher Micallef says

    I agree with you for the most part, however I think your confusing something.  Micrsoft is decreasing specs for the international market, not the US.  The Nikia 610 will prbably not see shelf space within the untied staes. 

    Microsft is increasing the specs with the apollo update coming out this fall.

    Oh, and the 900 isn’t going to be a flagship phone.  It still lacks LTE, a duel core, and an HD screen. 

    Just wait untill this fall when LTE is introduces the the platform, then verizon should pick it up ensurng an evern brighter future.

  7. JasonSCarter says

    I am in the same boat.  I have a family plan with Verizon, and I want to get a high end WP7 device, but Verizon isn’t offering any.  It sucks.  And the 900 does have LTE. 

  8. mr_lu says

    the discussion concentrates so much about  specs and functions .. but actually, what every user on every platform needs is not the mostest-core processor or the thinnestest display or pixelstest camera .. this is what marketing departments like to brag about, but it is not what really matters to a user: to make sure, that their data are safe and if the phone gets lost, stolen or bricks or WHATEVER, it is matter of short time to restore everything from somewhere (be it computer, cloud or WHATEVER). i had to re-install apps and data on a SGS II – the phone itself is superb, but the Kies is a proof that Dr. Mengele is not only alive, but actually he is still experimenting with how to inflict the biggest suffering on a human being: i had backups on both Mac and on PC – and my data did not get restored from either of them! so i had to manually restore all my apps one by one, and then all passwords, bookmarks, … one full weekend. so next time i m buying my new phone or tablet, my question will not be abt specs, but abt what happens when i want to move my data around.

    if WP delivers in that regard, then i dont care if i have “nokia” or “Samsung” or “apple” written on my next phone.

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