The two clear and present barriers to Windows Phone adoption

Paul Thurrott wrote a very good piece on his site called “And the Biggest Barrier to Windows Phone Acceptance Is…”.

In that article, he talks about some of the reasons he thinks that the Windows Phone platform is stalled.

His hypothesis is summed up as the following – Windows Phone is never promoted in social ads or any ads as robustly as other platforms.

From the piece:

You see these kinds of app promos in museums, in stores of all kinds, in restaurants, in cabs, in virtually everywhere that you go throughout your day. Whether the apps are in fact useful is irrelevant. They’re there. And they are always available for Android and iOS, and very occasionally for Blackberry. And almost never for Windows Phone.

The cumulative effect of these app promotions for Android and iOS are, I think, Windows Phone’s biggest problem. Because they create an effect in people’s minds where Android and iOS are the only smart phones available that make any sense

I think that Paul is partially correct.

He is spot on in his analysis that when it comes to advertising, Windows Phone hardly ever gets the time of day.

I believe though that the real questions is why is that the case? Why is Windows Phone not really taken seriously as a phone platform?

I have heard the number and quality of apps given as a reason and I don’t think that is the case at all.

I believe there are two answers and they are pretty simple.

The Metro/Modern User Interface approach has not been validated

Windows Phone 8 tiles

The bottom line is, there is still a debate about whether people want to see live tiles on their devices period. This is just clinical analysis – taking no position on it either way.

The refreshing thing about the tile approach is that it is new and it is unique. I have always commended Microsoft on having the balls and gumption to try something new.

When Samsung got into trouble with Apple, Microsoft’s unique approach was somewhat validated.

The problem however is that being new and unique is different from being desirable and accepted.

Do people like or even love the user interface for Windows Phone 8? Some people do sure but it’s pretty clear that at least so far, there is a far larger preference for Android and iOS.

Once again, just looking at the numbers people, don’t hate the messenger.

So the challenge for Microsoft will be to litigate/market/influence this issue and make the case that the Windows Phone 8 UI is worthy of top three status.

Now, the second reason:

Windows Phone hardware has up to this point, been unattractive

Nokia Lumia 920

I don’t like the Nokia Lumia phones. I haven’t been shy about saying that, they just don’t work for me.

The larger problem is, they haven’t worked for a lot of people up to this point and we will have to see if Windows Phone 8 changes any of that.

I wasn’t really a fan of any Windows Phone hardware until I saw the HTC 8x up close.

That one phone really looks and feels great but compared to the iPhone 5 and the 10 million Android alternatives, we can agree that with one or two good phones, Microsoft is behind in the hardware arena.

Microsoft need to build a slew of Microsoft phones.

I once thought that a Microsoft Surface phone was a great idea. I have changed my mind about that. Microsoft need to build 6 or 7 different phones and keep the quality of the builds consistent.

They should build Blackberry type phones, iPhone type phones, Galaxy type phones and give the general public a wide array of choices.

I think that the Microsoft Surface RT proves that Microsoft know how to build hardware. It’s time to back this up with a phone. AND FAST.

The truth is, there is a window (no pun) of time before it becomes too late for Microsoft to ever really compete as a viable mobile phone vendor. Some would even say that the window has closed.

I don’t agree with that but I think the sooner Microsoft acquire RIM and release their own phones the better.

Yeah I said acquire RIM.

I think these are the two main reasons Windows Phone has been stuck in the mud – software and hardware.

Seems obvious to me but hey, maybe I’m wrong here.

What say you?

Why do you think Windows Phone adoption has been so low?

Use the comments below and let me know…

Please Leave Your Comments Below...