Profile of Ed Hansberry
News & Commentary Posts: 709
Articles by Ed Hansberry
posted in May 2010
Microsoft certainly isn't planning to slowly gain market share when it launches Windows Phone 7 this fall. At a ReMIX conference in France yesterday a slide was presented that claimed 30 million Windows Phone 7 devices would be sold in 2011 worldwide. That is no small feat.
While the US has a tremendous amount of intellectual capital housed in companies like Dell, Apple, Microsoft and Cisco, few of their hardware products are made here. The vast majority are made in Asia, usually China or Taiwan. Work conditions aren't close to what many in the west are used to and right now, a rash of suicides are plaguing the Foxconn plant where Apples iPhone, iPod and iPad are made.
It is pretty clear that things still aren't going particularly well within Microsoft's entertainment and devices group. This group contains the X-Box, Zune and Windows Phone product groups. While X-Box itself is doing well, retaining a respectable second place in the gaming console wars, Windows Mobile hasn't fared so well and Zune continues to be an afterthought in the portable music player world.
4G networks are just beginning to roll out and hardware is hitting the shelves. Are these devices as fast as advertised, or will we be somewhat under whelmed at their speeds?
The Motorola Droid on Verizon's network has been a very popular device, so much so that in much of the public's eye, the Droid is the Android phone. It is about six months old though which is approaching middle-age for smartphones. Fortunately for us, there are leaks on the next generation Droid from Motorola and it too has Verizon branding.
Windows Phone 7 development is continuing and all indications are it is still on track for a Q4 launch this year as originally promised. We've now got one device, called the LG Panther, and at least one Twitter app is well on its way too.
Either the service has gotten better for iPhone users on the AT&T network or people are tired of complaining about it. I tend to think it the former more so than the latter. The iPad 3G has been out now for nearly three weeks and predictions of doom and gloom for the carrier didn't come to pass.
Microsoft isn't getting great publicity on Windows Phone 7 right now when it comes to developers jumping on board. No doubt there are hundreds, if not thousands, of developers getting their apps ready for the fall launch, but some key players have announced that initially, they won't be supporting the mobile platform.
Apple has been very aggressive with its prosecution of its case against Gizmodo since the tech site outed the next generation iPhone on its site a few weeks ago. New court documents reveal that according to Apple, it is suffering huge losses in sales as people sit on the sidelines waiting for the next round of hardware.
There is no doubt Google's Android had great success in 2009 as it rolled out to a number of devices and carriers and that trend is expected to continue, but news this past week has presented some speed bumps for the mobile platform.
Apple sued HTC back in early March claiming the handset maker infringed on a number of its patents. HTC has now responded in kind, by filing a complaint with the International Trade Commission. HTC has a modest request - that Apple stop selling the iPod, iPhone and iPad.
After the Kin rate plans from Verizon were announced, many of us in the world of mobile devices had to rub our eyes to make sure we were seeing the numbers correctly. This is a phone that seems to be aimed squarely at teens and people right out of college, yet Verizon basically has a $70 per month minimum charge for the device. Now the mobile partners are left to defend the pricing.
Few things can ruin your day like opening your phone bill and seeing that it is for over $1,000, $5,000, or even higher. This happens more often than you might think and now the Federal Communications Commission wants to put a tool into consumers hands that would mitigate this scenario. It is bold, clever and a technological marvel heretofore unconceivable by carriers. They are called - alerts. I know, it is a crazy idea isn't it?
HP just announced its intention to buy Palm on April 28. I am sure both companies are buried in financial due diligence and regulatory approval. That isn't putting the brakes on the rumor mill at all though. Right now the word is a WebOS based tablet is in the works and will be released sometime in the third quarter of this year.
AT&T just cannot catch a break. Despite, or because of, their exclusivity agreement with Apple on the iPhone, AT&T continues to be dogged by technical issues that frustrate its customers. The latest survey on US based wireless carriers puts AT&T at the top of the list when it comes to dropped calls.
The iPad has shaken things up in the market between full blown computers and smartphones. The big loser may be the netbook, the once beloved tiny computing device that saw rapid growth even during the economic downturn. And where are the smartbook devices in all of this?
It has been thought that Windows Phone 7 would be powered by Windows CE 6, which is the latest version of CE available. Windows Mobile 6 is powered by CE 5, so WP7 was going to run on the most current embedded OS Microsoft has to offer for phones. The truth is though, it may run on a hybrid of CE 6 and the next unreleased version.
Microsoft made a bold move by removing third party application multitasking from Windows Phone 7. This was especially surprising since multitasking has always been one of the features that separated it from its competition. Instead, it will rely on push notifications to simulate multitasking for many alerts from network enabled apps, which on a smartphone is just about all of them.
Microsoft has indirectly responded to Steve Job's missive regarding Flash on one of their developer blogs. While they share some concerns with Apple about Flash, Microsoft's position is to continue working with Adobe engineers and support Flash. I take that to mean that Flash for Windows Phone 7 will still be a reality.
Microsoft has released the latest Windows Phone Developer Community Technical Preview (CTP) for Windows 7 and the folks at XDA Developers didn't waste any time unlocking it to see what the ROM includes. Progress has been made, but time is running short for MS to finish it up, get it to manufacturers to get devices to market by the end of this year.