Friday, December 31, 2010
Microsoft has shipped 1.5 million Windows Phone 7
However, the software behemoth hasn't yet said how many sales to end users it has made.
By comparison, it's main rival Apple sold 1.7 million iPhone 4s in June in the first three days the phone was available, and has sold over 31 million iPhones so far in 2010 alone.
For its part, Google says it is currently activating 300,000 Android phones each day of the week.
Nevertheless, analysts are still impressed by what Microsoft has been able to do so far, considering that it was at a near standstill in the mobile segment less than a few months ago.
"But no one expected Windows Phone 7 to take the market by such a big surprise, and over 5,000 mobile apps sold on ten different models and in thirty countries is by no means a small accomplishment," said Al Hilwa, analyst at IDC. "If Microsoft executes on its mobile strategy, it will have a seat at the small table of the top two or three mobile application platform players in the next five years."
Although the iPhone App Store has 300,000 mobile apps and the Android Marketplace now features about 200,000 apps, 5,000 mobile apps in just nine weeks is a nice start for Microsoft. That's already as many apps as HP's 18-month old Palm WebOS platform has, and about 31.2 percent of the 15,000 apps on the BlackBerry App World.
Hilwa expects Windows Phone 7's app count to surpass Research In Motion's Blackberry by the middle of 2011. Almost all of the most-downloaded apps on the iPhone App Store and the Android Marketplace are also available on Windows Phone 7, but there are a few glaring omissions, however. For example, if you want to play a game called 'Angry Birds', you simply won't find it on a Windows Phone.
But surprisingly, Netflix is notably available on Windows Phone 7 but not on Android. According to the streaming video company "The issue has been the complete lack of a generic and full-fledged platform security and content protection mechanism available for Android."
So far, Microsoft's biggest net advantage is its platform's familiarity. Windows Phone 7 apps are written in the .NET language, the same software framework for programs that run on Windows computers and servers.
Windows's .NET framework is very popular, with hundreds of thousands of mobile app developers writing to it.
As popular Android and iOS is, there are still many wireless industry analysts that are saying that Microsoft's .NET language will continue to grow since so many people are already using it in many of their day-to-day chores.
In October, Microsoft released a few launch details for devices powered by its new Windows Phone 7 operating system. The launch will include 9 new devices set to be available in time for the holiday seasonacross Europe, North America and Asia.
Microsoft noted that more than sixty wireless carriers and operators across thirty countries have committed to launching smartphones powered by its new Phone 7 operating system first seen at this year’s Mobile World Congress event in Barcelona.
Across the globe, MID (mobile Internet device) makers that have signed up for the initial launch include Dell, HTC Corp, Samsung and LG Electronics Co.
Wireless carriers that have committed to the launch include America Movil, AT&T Mobility, Deutsche Telekom AG, Movistar, O2, Orange, SFR, SingTel, Telstra, Telus Mobility, T-Mobile USA and Vodafone.
U.S. wireless operators Verizon and Sprint Nextel – both reliant on CDMA-based networks – are expected to unveil their Windows Phone 7 devices early in 2011.
All of the devices will sport Qualcomm’s Snapdragon processor that has become a standard processing source for today’s high-end smartphones.