Tomi Ahonen, mobile guru extraordinaire, gives it to Steven Ballmer in an open letter to Microsoft (a bit long, but worth reading). Ballmer is clearly off the mark and mostly deserves what he is getting from Tomi. This is not the first time a Microsoft exec has been misguided on mobile, when claiming that Apple had a first mover advantage in App Stores.
In their defense though, I happen to be a big fan of Windows Mobile. And here are some reasons why:
* I have tried Palm OS and Symbian, and although older version of WM could not match them, starting from v6.0 and forward, the WM OS is stable, fast, and as usual incredibly well integrated with your PC. You also have easy implementation of various UIs – and building touch screen functionality is easy (which HTC has done well)
* My WM phone is substantially(!) faster than any BlackBerry I have seen with similar amount of load (2000+ contacts etc). Of course, this is as much of a hardware issue than OS, but still
* There are tons of Apps available (much more paid than free though). The main problem is accessibility. You need to know where to look – but if you are a Smartphone owner, you are likely to know this (which may become less true since Smartphones are becoming mainstream).
I have also tried the iPhone for 12+ months, and have to say if you set up your WM phone right, it is 10.000 times faster. Yes, the iPhone has an amazing app selection, but read stats on app usage and you know most apps are only used for a short time. So generally, you only care about quick access to the main apps (calendar, contacts, sms + perhaps a few more) which with any WM phone can be mapped easily to various keys. I cannot say how strange I find the iPhone enthusiasts’ excitement about getting video on the iPhone, when that has been available on most smartphones for 6-10 years. Even the availability of Skype on iPhone generated such a buzz, yet WM users have had Skype for over 2 years. We all can learn from the Apple marketing team for sure…