Windows Phone 7 Coming on Fast

IDC last month released a report examining the uptake of Windows Phone 7 mobile devices and application development. According to analyst Al Hilwa, Microsoft has managed to bootstrap an entirely new mobile OS and application ecosystem in about 18 months -- a remarkable feat when you consider how long Windows Mobile 6.x languished on the market.

Microsoft says it has shipped more than 1.5 million Windows Phone 7 units, supported by more than 6,000 published applications. Those are impressive numbers in a short period of time. Hilwa praised Microsoft's strategy in his report.

"If Microsoft executes on its mobile strategy with the same competence and dexterity [with which] it has executed the launch of [Windows Phone 7], IDC believes that it will have a seat at the small table of the top two or three mobile application platform players in the next five years," Hilwa wrote.

Redmond has work to do, according to Hilwa, including adding support for CDMA phones (expected in the first half of this year) and delivering features like multitasking, copy and paste, and rich camera integration. It must also invest in the emerging tablet market space.

"They have a bit of a mythical man-month issue, in that they need to get a large number of rapid improvements to the software of Windows Phone 7, so they may feel that they do not have time to work on a tablet," Hilwa wrote, noting the difficulty of adding developers to speed up a project. "But they should try harder to put a parallel team together and mobilize more quickly on a tablet version by end of year, for example."

Would you develop for a Windows- or Windows Phone-based tablet? E-mail me at [email protected].

About the Author

Michael Desmond is an editor and writer for 1105 Media's Enterprise Computing Group.

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