Adding a bit more excitement to the Surface gadgets, Microsoft showcased two new devices last month. The Surface Laptop and Surface Pro are set arrive mid-June, yet fans are keeping a keen eye on the company’s smartphone endeavors. With the Lumia gadgets clearly on their way out, Microsoft is widely speculated to be working on some kind of Surface smartphone.
The rumors surrounding this Windows gadget seem to have no bounds. A quick news search online offers a host of rumors for hopefuls to indulge in. They certainly lack no variety either, ranging from absolutely plausible to outright mad.
Yet Microsoft has dropped some interesting and subtle hints regarding the future of its phones. When these are coupled with the Lumia smartphones failure, as well as the growing affection for Surface products, the idea of a high-end phone bearing the Surface name no longer seems so far-fetched.
The names “Microsoft” and “Windows” remain synonymous with “computer” for just about anyone who knows what a PC is. Windows has an overwhelming lead as the PC consumer base’s go-to choice. The operating system sees more affection yet with the enhancements on the Windows 10 platform.
Windows is king of the Desktop
Net Market Share is a trusted conveyor of computer-related statistics. The organization reports that more than 75percent of the entire Desktop PC userbase uses either Windows 7 or Windows 10. Windows 8 and Windows 8.1 still hold a hefty 8.33 percent as of May 2017. However, the jump to Windows 10 chips deeply into this version’s usage.
Mac OS X secures the favor of a steady 12 percent of Desktop users. Chrome, Linux and others account for just over 4 percent. Point is, Microsoft’s Windows runs laps around its rival PC operating systems. Yet, is a shame that the love shown for Microsoft software fails to translate into Windows Phones.
Looking at smartphones, Android reigns as the king of this platform with a staggering 72.68 percent. The iPhone is in the hands of 19.32 percent of the smartphone consumer base. Nokia software is still more popular than may people might think. It runs on 1.24 percent of operational smartphones today. That might be a tiny foothold, but its more than Windows can account for. Less than 1 percent of smartphone users use the Windows Phone platform.
Microsoft’s poor presence in the smartphone market doesn’t come from a lack of trying. The company has no real formidable competitor when it comes to operating systems and user interfaces. The Windows platform has been around for much longer than its competitors today. It is mature and trusted with experts claiming that it the most user-friendly on mobile too.
“I have spent a great amount of time with iOS, Android and Windows since my first smartphone,” writes PocNetwork’s James. “The Windows Phone OS is quite possibly one of the best interfaces I have used yet.”
Microsoft could not please smartphone users
There are many others who share this sentiment, as well. Microsoft is the best at offering everything the user needs to know at a glance. The company does this with all its devices too, from desktops to its phones and tablets. Even the Xbox has a widely noted user-friendly UI.
In 2014, Microsoft adopted Nokia’s smartphone business for a while at a price of $7.2 billion. This was widely thought to be the big push the company needed to get to the top of smartphone market. The Windows giant applied a powerful mobile OS to the popular Lumia handsets, but that failed to get people on board too.
Not long after its completion, the Nokia smartphone purchase was officially considered a write-off by Microsoft. The truth is, by the time Microsoft got serious about smartphones, the market had already picked its favorites. Those remain Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android today.
App developers were (and still are) clearly in favor of going where the money is. This results in very little attention being dedicated to Windows from App creators too. Despite the praise given to Windows Phones, buyers proved too few and devs saw a platform too tiny for reasonable exposure. It is hard to score favor when you have to tell your consumers that the phone you’re does not support the Facebook app, WhatsApp and a host other popular applications available on the iPhone and Android devices.
Surface Phone has to be PC powerful
But there is a devices platform that does sees Windows reigning supreme, hence the Surface Phone. The gadget is widely said to be Microsoft’s “PC in your pocket”, all the power of a desktop crammed into a smartphone-like device. If that is true, there is a chance that Microsoft will run a full Windows OS on the allegedly incoming device.
CEO Satya Nadella believes that Microsoft already holds all the elements to create a device that is compact yet effective enough to work just as well as a PC.
“What we are going to do is focus [our] effort on places that have differentiation.” Nadella said. “If you take Windows Phone, where we are differentiated in Windows Phone, its manageability, its security, its Continuum capability, that is the ability to have a phone that, in fact, can even act like a PC.”
Sounds good enough, but where is this promised smartphone? The company did not release a flagship handset last year. The last Lumia gadget was launched in 2015 and Microsoft assures its hardware fans that a plans for formidable smartphones are still on the way. With a 0.92 percent stake on mobile and around 83 percent on desktop, it is clear how the Windows giant has to play its next smartphone card.