Microsoft has for the first time admitted that it completely redesigned its Windows Phone 7 smartphone operating system because of the way Apple had changed the market with the iPhone’s release back in 2007.
Speaking to The New York Times, Microsoft’s Jim Belfiore admitted that Apple “created a sea change” when the iPhone was introduced, and that Microsoft was forced to come up with something unique in order to compete with Apple’s new smartphone.
In December 2008 a team at Microsoft sat down and, after a marathon seven-hour meeting, decided that the only course of action was to complete redesign their mobile OS from the ground up. The result is the Windows Phone 7 we see today…
But even with its newly-created software and critical acclaim for a new approach to the smartphone market, Microsoft has still found it hard going in a world that is dominated by Apple’s iOS and Google’s Android, with Research In Motion picking up the scraps with its BlackBerry handsets.
With Nokia set to bring its Windows Phone 7-powered smartphones to the United States shortly, both parties will be hoping that this is the move which will kickstart an uplift in both of their fortunes.
Microsoft’s biggest problem is innovation. While the company was building a new OS from scratch, Google and Apple were improving on their existing platforms, which has left Windows Phone 7 still playing catchup. The platform is in its strongest position yet, though, with recent updates bringing both copy & paste and multitasking to Windows Phone 7 devices.
We hope Microsoft can make a go of things in the smartphone market. More competition is good for everyone involved, especially us customers!