Windows phone 10, the demise or something better on the horizon?

Having used Windows phone(s) for a good few years, it’s sad to see that Microsoft appear to have abandoned Windows Phone. WP is basically dead in the water (apparently) but will continue to be supported for another year or so. My Lumia 735 is still working fine and runs the Windows 10 Insider builds. A few days ago it updated to build 10.0.15063.850 and seems rock solid. It’s rumored that only security updates will now be offered but maybe a few more tweaks too! I think Microsoft have something up their sleeve but are giving confusing messages about Windows Phone!

Although I’m sad about the future demise of Windows Phones, I’m basically excited (even at my age) about the “PC in your Pocket”, this will mean your phone won’t be a phone – smart or otherwise; It will literally be a “powerful” device with the size scaled down to a “phone size”. It will basically be your “Main PC / computing device” that you carry about. If you’re on the move, you will use it like you use a “smartphone” but back home or in the office, it will connect automatically to your big screen and keyboard. Basically, you won’t need any other “computing device”! From what I understand, it will make great use of “The Cloud/always connected” and will provide a robust backup facility of your data. This is not a “concept idea”, it is already available; for those with a bit of cash!

On the downside, only having one device is a little unsettling! I’m used to having my toys, a Mobile phone and Laptop and Desktop and even an iPad, along with ‘Droid and Linux devices; hopping on to whatever is to hand. Anything serious, I do using the laptop or desktop with a proper keyboard and mouse and very big widescreen display (or two!) I even use a KVM to swap between a couple or more PCs and make use of RDP to access other devices on the LAN. Having only one device to play with would be like going cold turkey πŸ™‚

What will happen if my “main computing device” gets lost/breaks etc, will I need to buy 2 “PC in your pocket” devices and have one as a cloned backup? My current “main computing device” is my desktop and it’s connected to the LAN, does all the backups to my CentOS server and I can access it remotely if needed. When I’m out and about, all I really need do is pickup email and / or messages so thinking about it; a powerful “PC in my pocket” would be a bit of an overkill!

In the meantime, until WP is killed completely, Microsoft are trying to nudge people over to Android and use MS Apps! If you’re going over to Android, why bother with MS apps? IMO Android is “pants”, it’s basically a APP store and advertising whore but it’s free; why else would it be the most popular OS! The only other choice is an iPhone and it seems that Android do a lot of things a lot better! So it’s between a rock and a hard place then πŸ™ I don’t think it is likely that MS will release WP as Open Source to compete with the Free Android.

The real downside to Android is the “confusion”, lots of different devices and lots of different versions of the OS. Some have the latest most up-to-date (and hopefully most secure) version and a lot / most on various older versions where the device manufacturers have no intention of “updating” because they want you to buy a new phone!

It would seem that MS are basically out of the “phone” market; they have never had a huge market share and have only had a relative few ardent fans like me. The purchase of Nokia seemed to suggest that MS were indeed “in the phone / mobile market” but as Android is free; the only way to compete is to offer something free but better. It’s the “Betamax / VHS” situation, in this case VHS is Android and it seems to be the winner. Why did MS purchase Nokia? Nokia are now back making phones, so what did MS gain from the deal!

You can’t really blame MS for jumping ship, why flog a dead horse? They probably know the “mass market” for “phones” is Android and is unlikely to change but there is always room for “niche markets”.

Microsofts plans to have a “common OS” across all platforms was / is exciting and seems to be going well; when the transition is completed, it means that Windows looks and feels the same on Desktops, laptops, tablets and erm mobile phones! If they are now out of the “mobile phone” market, it would seem to be a bit of ofΒ  faux pas but maybe, just maybe, the “PC in your pocket” idea will potentially make “mobile phones” redundant; I wouldn’t hold my breath on that though!

IMO, the “PC in your Pocket” is /will be aimed at business users and it should be a brilliant solution for “Road Warriors” but maybe not so much for permanent office based users!

I think the general public will still prefer a low (ish) cost mobile phone, with the option of also having a desktop/ laptop/ tablet and most people don’t even know or care what an Operating System is!

Maybe MS really ought to have an “Open Source” version of Windows Phone, running on native Linux instead of trying to piggyback on to Android (heavily customised Linux) ! Maybe it’s too late, Android has a head start but I remember Novell; the leaders in Ethernet and all networking devices “had to be” Novell compatible!

Googles Pixel phone is an awesome device but it isn’t aimed at the general Joe public. It’s Android on steroids and has a price tag to match πŸ™ It’s downside is Android πŸ™‚

It’s not over “until the fat lady sings” (apparently) but TBH; I can’t see how Microsoft can get back into the “mobile phone market”; unless the OS is free for device manufacturers and it can offer a similar amount of “apps” that Android does! Maybe “Windows phone” running as an “app” on Android is the way forward!

If you’re going to use Android on your phone, why not use Android on your Desktop / laptop / tablet ?

Windows 10 is the best thing that has come out of Redmond and it just gets better and more secure but having a desktop (or main computing device) running Windows 10 and then having to use an Android or iPhone “Mobile phone/ device” is a backward step; its like having a hotdog with no onions and/or mustard, it’s like crackers with no cheese, its like apple pie without custard!

Windows phone (as we know it) maybe dead but I’m fairly confident that Microsoft will have a game changer up their sleeve, based on the “PC in your Pocket” idea. Microsofts “Andromeda” and “Surface devices”, along with developments with Cortana; indicate “Mobile Phones” are yesterday!

I’m pretty sure we are a very long way off “Beam me up Scotty” but “Tea, Earl Grey, Hot” might just be round the corner! “Communication devices” (that make “Mobile Phones” redundant) maybe just a small step away! This can be evidenced by the growth in devices worn on the wrist e.g. Apple Watch and other similar devices. We are not that far away from “Wearable computers”. Cortana, Siri, Google Talk etc are making inroads in the way people are using computers. I’m not yet “comfortable” about talking to my computer but most of the younger generation (that I come across) seem quite happy with the concept. This suggests that the “Mobile Phone” is becoming redundant and the “Comms badge” (Star Trek style) is now within sight. Maybe people will start talking to each other instead of texting, there’s a thoughtΒ  πŸ™‚

Whatever the future, I’m pretty sure Microsoft will still be part of the “mobile device” providers but the “Mobile Phone” market will still be Android! Something better is on the horizon!

The future is bright and exciting but its not Orange πŸ™‚