Windows Phone, the mobile OS flavor that Microsoft made official in 2010, is becoming increasingly popular among mobile phone users, but still has a lot to catch up when compared to rival solutions.
Users are unaware of the full set of capabilities that this OS has to offer, and that affects sales. Clearly, Microsoft needs to do something in this regard, and needs to do it fast.
It needs to set the marketing machine for Windows Phone in motion to raise awareness on its platform, thus ensuring that new devices powered by it gain more traction among end users.
Recently, Windows Phone was said to be suffering from lack of interest from wireless carriers and mobile phone makers, which translates into little to no marketing for devices powered by it.
That needs to change, and Microsoft appears to be aware of it. Terry Myerson, Microsoft's Corporate Vice President for Windows Phone, said in a recent interview with AllThingsD that the mobile OS does have an awareness problem.
“People just don’t know about Windows Phone and if it could be for them and if they should consider it. When people try it, they generally love it,” he said.
“We know we need to do something new and different,” Myerson said. However, he did not offer specific info on what Microsoft plans on changing.
A better marketing campaign is one solution, and US wireless carrier Sprint tends to agree. The company has Windows Phones in its lineup, but won’t rush to add some more of them anytime soon.
"We have a Windows device in our lineup, but honestly, it hasn't done well enough for us to jump back into the fire. We told Microsoft: You guys have to go build the enthusiasm for the product,” Sprint's VP of Product Realization, David Owens told PCMag.
"We want to participate in the market, but we can't build that brand by ourselves. We're cautiously optimistic, but [Windows Phone] just hasn't taken off,” Sprint Director of Product Development, Lois Fagan added.
Apparently, new Windows Phone devices might arrive on shelves at Sprint sometime in August-September. No details on why that particular timeframe was chosen have emerged so far, but chances are that new, more appealing devices will be launched – maybe dual-core handsets running Windows Phone 8.
At CES 2012, Microsoft unveiled the first LTE-capable Windows Phones, the HTC Titan II and Nokia Lumia 900, both expected to arrive on shelves at AT&T soon.
This marks an important step forward for the platform, especially since the iPhone isn’t there yet. However, the Redmond-based company needs to work closely with partners to launch even more of these, as the industry is moving to the faster connectivity technology.
Along with the new hardware capabilities, new devices will need to benefit from better marketing. Apparently, Microsoft has already made plans for this.
Rumor has it that Microsoft is willing to spend over $100 million in 2012 for the marketing of Nokia Lumia 900, and $100 million more for pushing forth the entire Windows Phone lineup, and that its hardware and carrier partners will be involved as well.