Looking Back: Top 10 Software Stories
Oh no, WinMo
In 2009, Microsoft got it right on Windows 7, but truly missed the mark on mobile. The company continued to lose share in the mobile software market, punctuated by Motorola jumping ship to partner with Google on the Droid, which it released last month to mostly positive reviews. Microsoft, who traditionally owned the enterprise mobile OS marketplace, saw enterprise customers selecting RIM BlackBerrys and, in some cases, the iPhone to replace Windows Mobile deployments. Instead of speeding up delivery of Windows Mobile 7, an OS intended to combat Android and iPhone in the consumer mobile wars, the company pushed back the release date, and guarded news about the product tightly even while info continued to leak. Latest rumors place the launch of Windows Mobile 7 at the end of 2010, once again delaying the availability of competitive and cool devices from Microsoft. In a weak attempt to stop the bleeding, Microsoft released a stop-gap WinMo 6.5, along with a limited Windows Marketplace in September. Reviews were poor and disappointed mobile-savvy customers lacked the confidence to purchase Windows Mobile devices that would quickly be leapfrogged by either a WinMo7 version or an Android phone. In 2010, expect Microsoft to clarify both its enterprise and consumer mobile strategy, but anticipate Windows Phones to continue to lose share due to the unavailability of a cutting-edge OS.