Microsoft Leads a Big Day in Tech
Microsoft finally took the official wraps off of the latest version of its Windows Phone OS today revealing features that anyone actually following its development already knew as Microsoft has been teasing us with dribs and drabs of the OS’s new features for months.
The biggest single change is the core of the OS which now shares its code base with the full x86 version of Windows 8 and presumably Windows RT, which is the full Windows 8 kernel recompiled and optimized to run on ARM SoCs.
This release is the climax of a whirlwind week for Microsoft wherein they released new versions of their flagship OS along with supporting hardware like the Surface Tablet.
I see Windows 8 as a very interesting product at this point that has a ton of advantages which will bear themselves out in the marketplace over the course of the next 18 to 24 months. The touch-centric idea of Windows 8 and the full integration of the whole of Microsoft’s software platform, namely Office will create a tremendous amount of value for everyday customers that was really not available at reasonable price points in the past.
All Windows mobile devices will have Office installed along with full access and integration into SkyDrive and their cloud architecture which Microsoft, in a strange twist of the tale, is defying the advertising data whores by being publicly aggressive about protecting user privacy versus the open-closed-reopened world of Apple and Google whose privacy policies care about one thing and one thing alone, driving S&P 500 earnings totals higher.
Microsoft has lost a lot of cache with users over the past 15 years and on this point alone as we move more and more of our data to the cloud could become a real differentiator for them in the marketplace should they stick to their guns on this. If the app and social networking developers want to sell users data that’s fine, but there is really no need for Microsoft, as the platform provider, to do so.