Yesterday, Microsoft held a press conference and preview event for Windows Phone 8 and dropped a pretty big bomb. With a whole lot of new features, the key feature everyone is talking about is that it will not work with current Windows phones. While current Windows phone owners will get a 7.8 upgrade with a few of the enhancements, it only covers about a third of them. Chris and I had a mini twitter debate on this and we will definitely cover it during the podcast this weekend. This is a pretty big deal and I’ll discuss my thoughts after the break.
As a person who understands technology and how certain things require other things to run, I’m still shocked to see that Microsoft is doing this to current Windows phone customers. When the Nokia Lumia 900 came out a short while ago, Nokia ran a whole slew of commercials touting how all other smart phones were a beta test until now. Windows Phone gained a lot of fans with the Lumia 900, but now the phone is obsolete and it’s still selling for a fresh $199.
There have been people stating that Apple has been doing this for a while and I agree with that to a certain extent. The gap between Apple making huge changes like this was relatively large, where my Titan and newer Lumia owners haven’t even had our phones for a year and we’re now told we’ll get one more update and that’s that.
Now, to the main point of how this might hurt Microsoft. All of my complaints above have merit and I know there are counter arguments. However, Windows Phone has a following of some tech savy folks and a lot of regular consumers. The tech savy folks and uber consumers expect such things, but the regular consumer expects their products to be supported for longer than a few measly months. This massive change opens the door for consumers to ditch windows phone and switch to an iPhone or Android, even at the expense of a fee because they will feel abandoned. For a company who is trying to gain market share but pull such a bold move kind of baffles me. The discussion will carry on into the podcast this weekend, but I needed to vent. What do you think of this decision?