06.05.10

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Microsoft is Seven-Washing Its Lousy Platform for ARM

Posted in GNU/Linux, Hardware, Microsoft, Windows at 3:08 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Laundrette

Summary: Microsoft is renaming yet another product, adding the magic number “7″ as though brands alone will bring about success

AS Linux becomes dominant in mobile devices and all that Microsoft has is this thing called “CE” (which is regarded as somewhat of a joke), Microsoft is “Seven-washing” it — a term that we coined some weeks ago. It simply means adding the number “7″ to platforms, hoping that the platforms will be associated with Vista 7, which is more of a marketing/AstroTurf success than a technical success.

“It means that the product is doing so badly that unless it changes identity, no second chances will be given to it by the market.”It’s a tad amusing to see Microsoft Seven-washing just about any product it has. The reputation of many of its products is so low that it needs to borrow a boost from another branding campaign. The latest example is “Windows Embedded Compact 7″ [1, 2, 3]. Microsoft renames this platform almost every year, just as it does with its search and mobile products (Microsoft leaves “Windows Mobile” behind). It means that the product is doing so badly that unless it changes identity, no second chances will be given to it by the market.

Tim has noticed that Microsoft’s joke of a competition called “KIN” is doing pretty badly [1, 2, 3, 4]. He asks in his headline: “Only a month on and the Kin is discounted?”

Microsoft’s Kin phone which hit the news almost immediately, with some people taking exception to its advert where Microsoft was accused of promoting “sexting”.

After promptly removing the section they were then accused by some of overacting.

A few years back I remember entering a discussion on Microsoft Watch, where users were reporting that the Microsoft Zune was to be found in the bargain bin of stores (around the Xmas period) Could the Kin be destined for the “bargain bin” too?

Our guess is that “KIN” and “Zune” share the same trajectory, not just the same software. The leadership of both products recently left, which tells a bundle. ARM devices will not appeal to Windows programmers (who need to recompile everything), so Microsoft’s “Windows Embedded Compact 7″ is a non-starter without any useful applications. “KIN” has the exact same problem that branding work alone is not going to resolve. Microsoft might as well just give up on this area. Even its MVP Miguel de Icaza does not support their products; instead he targets Apple (not Linux).

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2 Comments

  1. David Gerard said,

    June 5, 2010 at 3:15 pm

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    You realise that no-one is talking about Kin any more except us haters, pointing and laughing …

    Nevertheless, I’m looking forward to my Zune 7. “Squirt” your way to the “social!”

    Dr. Roy Schestowitz Reply:

    “Zune” was mentioned a lot by those who ridiculed it. This did not help it succeed, this merely stigmatised it (along with its buyers).

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