Summary: A look at Microsoft’s hopeless attempts to catch up with the Linux-based Android and the E-mail service from Google, which is based on GNU/Linux
AS ARGUED in the previous post, Windows hardly makes any news anymore. Zune is entirely gone from the news (nothing about Zune anymore, at least based on headlines) and the Zune’s successor replaces what we once knew as “Windows Mobile”. It’s just a rebranding strategy with flushing of existing applications. The people behind these colossal mistakes have abandoned Microsoft by now, leaving the once-fearsome monopolist in a very vulnerable position in mobile.
Microsoft is jumping the shark with ugly designs like those of “KIN” phones, which won’t have much to offer compared to Linux phones. Ed Hansberry, mostly a Microsoft booster, admits that it’s a problem and Skype explains its apathy:
After making headlines last week by saying that it would not be creating a VoIP app for the upcoming Windows Phone 7 platform, Skype has commented further on the matter but confirmed little in detail.
“It’s not too shocking that firms which are paid by Microsoft also embellish Microsoft’s position in the mobile market or artificially demote its competition.”Mac sites slam Microsoft partners like NPD and comScore [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, 8, 9, 10] because they make Apple look bad. It’s not too shocking that firms which are paid by Microsoft also embellish Microsoft’s position in the mobile market or artificially demote its competition.
On the face of it, Microsoft is giving some journalists phones to review, only to receive poor scores like 68.5 (out of 100), which are still higher than the rest
Reviews of “KIN” phones are mostly negative [1, 2, 3, 4]. There is Wolverton’s review (also here) which left him underwhelmed, so Microsoft is trying PR instead, aiming for children, as usual. Microsoft is trying a niche-targeted PR campaign [1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 6], but it’s hardly going to work. They are also trying to seed reviews on the face of it. Watch the one comment in there:
Thanks for the great review! I just wanted to stop by and let you and your readers know that you can go to KIN.com to learn more about the KIN and follow along with ‘The Journey’ on our Facebook page to see the KIN in action.
Kin Outreach Team
How pathetic. It smells like another one of those marketing/AstroTurfing campaigns Microsoft is known for. They are using the same response in several reviews, so it’s like a Microsoft suck-up bot. Here at GigaOM/BusinessWeek one can see the writer being pushed for an update by Microsoft. Microsoft agents are trying to track and affect the public image of projects/products, sometimes even taking down other people's negative reviews.
That new example of Microsoft modifying articles about its products actually covered Hotmail, which Microsoft’s PR agencies tried pushing into the headlines because Microsoft made some minor changes to this service which spies on users. Google did not sit idly.
Call it perfect timing. The same day Microsoft unveils a sweeping refresh to its Hotmail email offering, Google Apps hits the market with new gadgets to tweak and customize Gmail.
Hotmail is still not working properly with non-Microsoft computers and Google claims that Microsoft is too late to reach Fog Computing. Servers (in the Web services sense) and devices are Microsoft’s Nemesis. Microsoft is losing billions of dollars there. █