Linked by Thom Holwerda on Fri 15th Aug 2014 11:33 UTC

Speaking of Windows Phone - it seems like it's not happening.

Telecom executives for years have trumpeted the need for a new cellphone platform to provide a counterweight to the dominance of Google's Android and Apple's iOS. Maybe it could be BlackBerry. Or maybe Windows.

Or maybe not. According to the data from IDC, the two top players are only getting stronger, grabbing 96.4% of global smartphone shipments in the second quarter, up from 92.6% a year ago.

Windows Phone’s share of shipments fell to 2.5% of the total from 3.4% a year ago, as shipments dropped by more than 9%. BlackBerry’s share fell to 0.5% from 2.8% - below the market share of the "other" category - amid a total collapse in shipments.

This is a two-horse race, and the rest is fighting over the scraps. Those scraps are enough for newcomers such as Jolla, who don't really need the massive numbers to keep a small company alive, but it's the death knell for platforms from larger, established companies with demanding shareholders.

So far, the whole Windows Phone experiment has been a disaster for Microsoft (and Nokia). They've had to pour so much money into Windows Phone just to keep it alive that it will take them 5-10 years before they will ever make any profit on the platform - and that's assuming it actually takes off. If it continues to muddle as it does now, it will remain a huge money pit - and at some point, shareholders and the new CEO will question its existence.

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Comment by Nelson
by Nelson on Sat 16th Aug 2014 14:31 UTC
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I don't think there is much to excuse this, its a terrible showing by Microsoft. I was naive to think that this transition would go off without having a sales impact.

Then again, I'm not sure I anticipated the regulatory approval dragging on for as long as it did. It is what it is though.

So sales are flat to negative YoY and QoQ. Definitely bad. Also shows that Nokia was growing its volume despite Microsoft, not because of it. Its understated just how much effort they put into the platform. It showed.

Microsoft with many times over the resources hasn't done anything nearly as impressive. Nokia for al its management faults, did execute really well on their strategy.

Now, looking forward. Where does WIndows Phone stand? Will it be killed? Are the vultures circling the dead carcass? Is this mythical angry shareholder strawman going to take your live tiles away?

No. Microsoft wont kill Windows Phone because the platform brings numerous intangible benefits. In my opinion, Satya can understand and appreciate that.

We have some positive catalysts for 2014 like the 15+ OEMs which signed up after Microsoft eliminated licensing fees and opened up hardware specs.

There's also Nokia's product pipeline that will be ramping up towards Q3/Q4 to watch out for. Including the Lumia 530 which seems to be pushing prices even further downwards than the 520. I've seen the devices from the regional OEMs and their low end devices seemed price in that range as well.

Will it lead to a sales rebound? Well, it can't really get worse without turning into a complete disaster -- so in my opinion yes. Will it be dramatic enough to silence the critics/cynics here? Probably not.

I do think its cute when people try to distill complicated product strategy down to a simple P/L statement. Microsoft has retarded amounts of cash, the suggestion that Microsoft might drop the platform is more OSNews red meat than anything.

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