12.22.10

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ARM Noise Amplified While Channel Stuffing Allows Microsoft to Give Fake Phone Numbers to the Press

Posted in Hardware, Microsoft at 7:57 pm by Dr. Roy Schestowitz

Rabbit with Easter egg

Summary: Microsoft moves to ARM-flavoured hype and potentially distracts from the terrible news about its epic failure in the mobile space

Seven seven seven seven. Branding is all that's left at Microsoft and the same old tactics are being used on ARM chips, which are the latest thing to be excessively hyped up in the corporate press. The matter of fact is, Vista 7 is no success story, it’s possibly a marketing success story.

Even Microsoft boosters like Preston Gralla are discouraged enough to admit that ARM won’t save Windows. This whole strategy is doomed to fail because not much is compiled for ARM in the form of .EXE files. Third-party applications are the major selling point of Windows, so what good will ARM be in such a proprietary (strictly precompiled and thus binary-only) universe? The situation is abysmal for Microsoft and accompanying products like Vista Phony 7 [sic] merely continue a tradition of Microsoft failures in mobile. It sure seems like Microsoft tries to bury this bit of news.

Based on this announcement from Microsoft, despite it being Christmas shopping season with a lot of marketing (half a billion dollars allocated to Vista Phony 7 [sic] advertising), only pathetic quantities/unit numbers of phones were shipped to stores (not customers). Be careful of the numbers’ meaning; As Microsoft spinner Bott reluctantly admits, when Microsoft says 1.5 million phones it does not talk about real sales. Pogson puts it like this in reference to the Microsoft boosters from ZDNet:

UPDATE Mary-Jo and Ed Bott report that M$ claims 1.5million WP7 phones have been sold. It may be that the channel partners have swallowed the bait… No word on activations by consumers.

One reader of ours mailed us what he called “Latest Windows Phone 7 news” and it’s this bunch of statistics showing that Vista Phony 7 [sic] is nowhere to be seen and not gaining, either.

Over the past three weeks, for every one Windows Phone 7 impression we see, there are 110 Android impressions and 172 iPhone impressions. That number is remaining relatively stable, with very little significant market share growth in WP7.

ZIff Davis gives “10 Reasons Why … Microsoft Windows Phone 7 Shipments Fail to Impress”, summarising it as follows:

Microsoft mobile device partners shipped 1.5 million Windows Phone 7 units to carriers during the first six weeks of its availability, according to Microsoft officials.

Microsoft is not sharing these numbers out of pride. It just needed to say something before the end of the year. The employees had loose lips, so people already knew that sale numbers sucked. Well, they realised they couldn’t hide it forever, just hype it. Now we have something concrete to play with, but all we know is the number of phones collecting dust on shop shelves or warehouses. It’s not easy to estimate just how many people actually bought Windows phones. All we know is that Microsoft fails in the mobile market and it will try using patents instead, as means of extracting money from phones that are winning, notably those with Linux as their underlying platform.

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A Single Comment

  1. twitter said,

    December 23, 2010 at 1:50 am

    Gravatar

    Vista 7 on ARM won’t perform any better than Vista 7 on netbooks in any way. Technical performance will be dismal and revenue will be even worse. $400 Windows netbooks are not jumping off the shelf the way gnu/linux models did because people know they don’t work well.

    There’s not much room for licensing fees in a $200 ARM device, Microsoft’s goal must be to crush the market so that people don’t realize they can do what they need with gnu/linux. Watch for Microsoft to bully makers of ARM based devices to waste time and resources trying to make Windows work for Microsoft. Watch them also try to bully retailers into carrying nothing but their nasty tablets at $300 to $400, just a little cheaper than iPad. OEMs that don’t play along will be hit with patent lawsuits that prevent import to the US. Given a choice between Windows and nothing, most people will chose nothing and the market will die, the same way the market for netbooks died after Microsoft crushed Asus, OLPC and Palm.

    This won’t really kill ARM so much as it will make the US more of a tech backwater. People outside of the US have long enjoyed a thriving smartphone market and remarkable ARM based devices like the Sharp Zaurus.

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