In today’s smartphone environment there are actually quite a few platform choices, but it is hard to argue with the fact that Android and iOS dominate the scene.
Despite all of this, Windows Phone has become a very solid choice over the course of the last year or so, and has quickly become an upgrade path for Blackberry users that, for whatever reason, don’t want an iPhone or Android device. With Windows 8 on the horizon there is supposedly going to be some strong ties between that platform, the smartphone, and even Xbox.
This has led to some strong speculation that 2012 might be the year that 2012 sees its largest growth yet.
There has been many rumored catalysts for this rise such as Nokia involvement, the launch of Windows 8, and the arrival of a new version of Windows Phone that may even possibly see a move from CE to NT, though this is a highly debated topic that has no official proof. Unfortunately Nokia hasn’t seemed to do too much for WP growth yet – but what about Windows 8? How can it help Windows Phone grow?
First off, we’ve already seen that many of the early Windows 8 games for METRO are essentially high-quality ports of WP apps. The ease of conversion between the two platforms is a huge key to the growth of both platforms, in my opinion. Early on, Windows 8 will likely rely quite heavily on Windows Phone apps to build up its initial library.
Afterwards? Windows 8 tablets and desktops will start flooding the market and more than likely developers that have had absolutely NO interest in developing for WP will openly embrace Metro/W8 development. If they are already building for Windows 8, why not do the very brief process of converting to Windows Phone as well? This will continue to enforce and strengthen the library of both platforms.
Even without Window 8 though, Microsoft has done a great job in doubling its app library in a little less than six months, which is a good sign for WP users. Okay, so Windows Phone and Windows 8 will have each other’s back, how is that much different than the dynamic between iPad and iPhone? Not much, other than you have desktop support thrown in, too.
Now, does Windows Phone have the ability to bury iOS and Android completely, like some very devoted WP users have said? Honestly, probably not – at least not for many years. Sure, Android has its problems but it’s already commonplace in the market and cemented in user’s heads. Apple fans are quite devote, so good luck there.
That being said? A market of three major competitors isn’t a bad thing. I don’t suspect it will overthrow Google’s Android or iOS, but I do think it could come down to a near-three-way tie in the next few years. So how will you know that Windows Phone is finally closing in on the competition?
The big sign of change will be when certain major software and accessories say “For iOS, Android, and WP”. There was a time when many software and games were “iOS only”, then Android started growing and more and more software was rated for both platforms.
There is no denying that Windows Phone is a great OS, even if a little under-appreciated, now we just need to wait and see whether or not later 2012, and early 2013, will finally be the time for WP.
What do you think? Will Windows 8 make a big difference for Windows Phone?
Will Nokia’s presence finally start to change the tide, even though it has yet to make much difference?
Share your thoughts below.