Dear Bob ...
I'm not looking for advice, just commentary. Sometimes you bend a bit and comment on industry matters in ways that don't translate to advice. How about a comment on the just-announced alliance between Microsoft and Nokia?
- Just Curious
Dear Curious ...
So long as you understand that I know nothing specific about the situation beyond what I read in the same trade pubs and blogs as you, what the heck -- here's my take.
On the positive side of the ledger, this is probably the best move either company could make. With its failure to include cut-and-paste in the initial version of Windows Phone 7, Microsoft lost whatever credibility it had hoped to re-establish in the smartphone marketplace. It needed to leapfrog its competitors, not land a few jumps behind.
This was stupid enough when Apple neglected to include it in the early iPhones. It's even stupider now, and unlike Apple, the people who buy Microsoft products are customers, not fans, and they're far less forgiving. Meanwhile, Nokia has spent so many years failing to even understand that smartphones are a marketplace that its reputation is thoroughly shredded as well.
It's the best either company could do. Microsoft needed a hardware manufacturer willing to stick its neck out, and no other candidate is likely to invest much time and effort to make their Windows Phone 7 smartphones particularly interesting. Nokia needed something to make its smartphones more interesting than ... whatever it's been up to that nobody has cared about because it really didn't matter.