Windows Phone 7 is Almost Here
By David Dorf on Oct 13, 2010
Windows Phone 7 was launched this week and will be available on mobile phones starting November 8th. Microsoft has been largely absent from the mobile phone revolution that Apple began with the iPhone. Blackberry has been evolving its phones, and Android has had the fastest growth in the market. So should retailers starting porting their applications to the WP7 platform?I've discussed the marketshare statistics previously, but the net is that the worldwide marketshare for Windows mobile is around 4% and falling. So I've told retailers they should release on iOS first, then Android. That's sufficient for most, but some will want to eventually support Blackberry and Web-based (for feature phones). I've never recommended supporting Windows Mobile.
Microsoft has featured Tesco's and eBay's applications during the WP7 launch and both look great. Obviously it will take a while to build up applications in the WP7 store, but rest assured the apps are coming.
From what I've read, the interface appears to be very easy to use, possibly on par with the iPhone. And Microsoft is trying to avoid some of Android's issues, namely, lack of quality control, consistency across handsets, and complexity. With an easy-to-use interface, support for multiple handsets, and rigorous quality control, Microsoft has a winning formula. But the general consensus on the internet seems to be that WP7 will not threaten the iPhone, although it could slow Android's growth. It may just be too late.
So at least for now, I still recommend retailers wait on developing WP7 applications.