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Windows Phone 7 Gets $500 Million In Support

After Windows Vista, Microsoft had a bit of a rebirth with Windows 7. That momentum is carrying forward into Windows Phone 7. Microsoft has committed over half a billion dollars to help launch the platform this fall. The funds are spread across marketing, developers, handset makers and likely carriers to ensure the platform gets the largest smartphone platform launch in history. Will that translate into sales for the platform?
After Windows Vista, Microsoft had a bit of a rebirth with Windows 7. That momentum is carrying forward into Windows Phone 7. Microsoft has committed over half a billion dollars to help launch the platform this fall. The funds are spread across marketing, developers, handset makers and likely carriers to ensure the platform gets the largest smartphone platform launch in history. Will that translate into sales for the platform?According to TechCrunch, $400 million alone is going to marketing to support the launch. With that kind of funding, I would expect the airwaves and print media to be flooded. For Microsoft's sake, the message needs to be clear, not strange like some of the Kin ads or the Seinfeld campaign.

The money doesn't stop there though. According to Jonathan Goldberg, an analyst with Deutsche Bank said Microsoft would spend billions in the first year on marketing and development.

This is Microsoft's last chance to get serious about mobile phones. If Windows Phone 7 stumbles out of the gate, there won't be a Windows Phone 8. Microsoft cannot afford to have a launch similar to WebOS either. That platform launched to a lot of hoopla then quickly faded as developers failed to flock to the platform, which led to users having a tentative response to a platform with relatively few applications. Palm's advertising campaign for the Pre was also one of the strangest I've seen. I don't know anyone that wanted to pick up a Pre and be associated with the feeling that ad gave you.

Billions of dollars or not, the platform is going to have to stand on its own. We know there are some pretty big shortcomings out of the gate, like the lack of copy and paste, but the gaming story with XBox Live, browser performance, live tiles and the smooth performance of the user interface have had a pretty good reception in reviews.

We'll know in a few months if everything pays off.



Click to see "Slideshow: Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 Revealed."
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