Windows Phone was a complete failure

It is almost a tragic story for  Microsoft. As Apple unveiled its latest iteration of iPhone and the brand-new 10th anniversary edition dubbed iPhone X, Microsoft did actually shot its foot despite its multi-year head start in mobile business.

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Traced back in 2000, Microsoft embarrassed the notion of mobility with the introduction of the Windows Mobile for PDA and smartphones. But no one saw Apple coming from the ashes and ate it its market share slowly but surely when it unveiled iPhone in 2007.

It was a real threat. And it was too late.

It was too late for Microsoft for a simple reason. When Windows Phone 7 was revealed in 2010, three years after iPhone, the mobile ecosystem was dominated by Apple and Google. Despite the steady improvements of Windows Phone and the doomed acquisition of Nokia, consumers yawed and were bored by the lack of a rigid ecosystem from Microsoft. Windows Phone Store was a complete disaster. Flagship apps from iOS and Android were not even available on the Windows Phone Store.

Despite Microsoft’s vast resources, they simply couldn’t compete in a mobile oriented market that had quickly pegged them as irrelevant. Indeed, even as Windows Phone launched, many were quick to proclaim that the initiative was doomed from the start.

Another reason is that Microsoft was focused on Windows and Office products, which are simply the company cash-cows. While Apple focused on hardware and Google on the search engines and mobile ecosystem.

The Longhorn project that Microsoft embarked back in early 2000s, was amid the reasons that Microsoft missed the boat to get into the mobile business. By the time Longhorn was completed and renamed as Vista, iPhone in its first iteration hit the shelves. Microsoft needed to refocus on how to correct the Vista mistake. By the time Windows 7 and 8 hit the computer landscape, Apple and Google enjoyed their two house race, as Microsoft was seen from their rear view mirror.

If Microsoft engineers and executives had experienced that same type of urgency, the smartphone market today might very well look a lot different than it does today.

Sofiane MEROUANI

 

So long iPod and thanks for all the tunes!

That’s it. It’s the end. Apple has finally put the final nail to the iPod. The Nano and the Shuffle series won’t be produced. So you would better keep them as a relic of the past. They might cost too much on ebay.com if you want to sell them.

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iPod was released all the way back in 2001, when CD players were in vogue. Steve Jobs took the industry by storm as the iDevice becomes the de-facto of music aficionados. As the times went by,  Apple released a multitude of upgrades for the iPod and hardware revisions. I owned my first iPod Photo all the way back in 2004. Back then I still used my Creative MP3 with only 128 MB of storage. As compared to my iPod Photo that held of 30 GB of data, well the difference was so big!

When iPhone was released, Apple produced a iPod touch, it was basically an iPhone without the cellular capabilities. the Touch version went through many iterations.  Apple kept producing the nano series along the side. The latest one is the iPod Nano 7.

It should be noted that Apple won’t put the touch-version of the iPod on the chopping block, as it continues to manufacture them.

So long iPod.

Sofiane MEROUANI

A look back to the original iPhone Prototypes. Circa 2005/2006

June 29. The 10th anniversary of the iPhone.

June 29 marked the 10th anniversary of the original iPhone. Introduced by Steve Jobs in January 2007, iPhone went on sale and changed the smartphone landscape forever.

While the hype is building up around the upcoming iPhone 8, let’s take a trip  down a memory lane with the original iPhone prototypes. Apple employee Ken Kocienda took to Twitter to offer a look back at the first Apple smartphone, that quite frankly looked like a Palm devices.

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As you can see in the pictures above, the devices are far cry from anything we’d see from the today’s smartphones. It’s a hint that how technology was dancing forward.

That first Apple phone boasted some impressive specs for its time, but today seems almost laughable. A 3.5-inch display at just 320×480, 128 MB of memory, and a 2.0 MP camera — not to mention a default storage size of just 4 GB.

“I kept those devices in my desk drawer for years,” . “When I left Apple, returning this hardware was tough, like saying goodbye to old friends.”

— Ken Kocienda

Kocienda, who just left Apple in early May, was with the company for an impressive 16 years, working on human interface design and (according to his own tweets) was involved in the development of the software keyboard that the iPhone became so well known for.

Sofiane MEROUANI

You can download the iOS 11 Public Beta but at your own risk!

Earlier this month, Apple announced a major revamp of its popular operating system. For the iPhone, it’s the brand new iOS 11. For the Mac, it’s the High Sierra in its 10.13 iteration.

While the focus is not on the Mac as the High Sierra is still listed as “coming soon”, Apple right now begin seeding the next version of iOS 11 in its beta form. Just as a reminder, the beta is at your own risk. You can download it, tinker with it and sends bug reports to Apple.

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Last year, I began moving away from my Android and Windows devices with acquisition of iPod Touch 5th generation (which I bought back in 2016) and a second-hand iPad 2 mini back in March 2017.  Apple has a very bright future and I thought it was a time to move on. (Even Mondi Ess jumped into the Apple bandwagon), so another reason to get an iPhone 6 S as quickly as possible.

iOS 11 is certainly more feature-heavy. It contains an all-new Control Center, notifications work differently, drag and drop, and there’s a new Files app. There are also a number of iPad-specific improvements, such as a new dock that allows you to fit many more apps on it, and a new way of implementing Slideover and Split View. In fact, you can now combine Split View and Slideover to show three apps on the screen at once.

There are also some photo editing improvements. You can now trim live photos, and when you take a screenshot, you’ll be able to tap a thumbnail to go to a screen where you can crop it or write on it.

You can sign up for Apple’s Public Beta Program here, or if it’s still too early for you, you can wait a couple of weeks until the next build is out. The updates will be generally available this fall, likely at the end of September.

Sofiane MEROUANI