I’d like to present you with two quotes. The first is by Steve Ballmer, on January 17, 2007:
“[Apple’s iPhone] is the most expensive phone in the world and it doesn’t appeal to business customers because it doesn’t have a keyboard which makes it not a very good email machine… So, I, I kinda look at that and I say, well, I like our strategy. I like it a lot.”
This week Windows Mobile 6.5 arrived, which is the result of two and a half years of that strategy. A choice quote from John Herrman writing for Gizmodo:
I’d like to think that 6.5’s stunning failure to innovate is a symptom of a neglected project—maybe Microsoft just needed something, anything to hold people over until the mythical Windows Mobile 7 comes out, whatever it is. But as Steve Ballmer himself has plainly admitted, it’s worse: Microsoft has simply lumbered in the wrong direction for two years, letting everyone, save maybe Nokia, fly right past them.
In that two and a half year period, the smartphone industry has changed a lot; Microsoft’s strategy, however, seems to have been “stick to the status quo”.
Their status quo.
Their embarrassingly bad status quo.
Here’s to the Blackberry, Pre and Android platforms providing some good competition for Apple, because it sure as hell doesn’t seem like it’ll ever come from Microsoft. Ballmer more or less even acknowledged that.