How Windows Phone could be salvaged

If there are investors that are not believing their misfortune it must be Research In Motion shareholders. watching your company move from dominating the smartphone market to limping about like an old diseased dog must be absolutely devastating.

Blackberry footsied about ignoring the growing dominance of iOS and Android devices and the rest as they say is history. At some point my adventurous self tried out the Blackberry Storm 2 and I must say save for the awesome camera the rest of the phone was crap. Slow to respond, heavier than a brick with some weird tactile feedback screen and the worst battery life I have ever seen in a new smartphone. Reminded me of pre 2008 laptops.

English: The BlackBerry Storm 9530 smartphone.
English: The BlackBerry Storm 9530 smartphone. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

But the one place Blackberry ruled and is still dominant to date is in the enterprise/corporate world. Suit wearers love the email and security features built into the device and I still see corporate types donning Blackberries albeit less and less.

And this is where the cousin of Blackberry (at least in the insignificant market share family) should be capitalizing and getting a foothold. As far as I can tell the dominant OS on most corporate desktops is still windows. Throw in a well thought out affordable windows tablet that can easily be hooked up to the offices intranet and CEOs will stop buying iPads. Put the same amount of effort if not more into a security and work conscious Windows phone and CEOs and their minions will go the Windows phone way. Make the entire ecosystem so rock solid and seamless that Windows phone becomes the default corporate hardware.

English: Picture from the Samsung Omnia 7 (als...
English: Picture from the Samsung Omnia 7 (also known as Samsung I8700) with Windows Phone 7 Homescreen. Deutsch: Bild des Samsung Omnia 7 (auch bekannt als Samsung I8700) mit Windows Phone 7 Homescreen. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Forget the consumer market for now, you will get them later. Fighting the Samsung galaxy’s and iPhones now is not going to be easy and a lot of marketing dollars will be wasted. Go for the sure budgets and they will soon trickle into the consumer market, just like the Blackberries did. Then take the entire Blackberry model where they have preferential data rates etc. Hell buy Blackberry outright. Why not? They are cheap enough now.

Wasting time fighting with Android gadgets about who is prettiest is only wasting their money flogging a limping horse.

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Orange + iPad

I gotta tell you folks I am pretty convinced that Orange Kenya are the kings and queens of unfinished business.

I first observed this prior to the launch of the iPhone 3G. Here was a multinational with a kick ass brand launching the most superior handset on the planet backed by a company that is literally loved by its fan boys and they didn’t even have a 3G network or even a promise that this was forthcoming. This was moronic in my view but in retrospect it may have been a good move.

As Seth Godin keeps saying, Ship! move whatever crap you have in your warehouse however horrible it is. Criticism and ridicule can only improve you.

Skip to 2011 and a fella called Mwangi needs a microsim to slip into an iPad and rock on the impressive 3G network that is pimped by Orange. Just to make things clear, i have options. Airtel and the Safaricom both have decent 3G offerings so this choice has nothing to do with technology. Just loyalty and after all they do stock iPhones so handling an iPads needs should be painless no?

No.

Its like a psychedelic induced mole believing your behind is its rightful home. The seemingly clueless customer care do not help one bit. Here is a rudimentary checklist.

  1. Do they stock Microsims? = yes
  2. Is the no. on the microsim easily visible? = No
  3. Is it visible at all? = no
  4. Does calling customer care help? = no
  5. can you top up? = yes
  6. is there a confirmation? = no
  7. can you buy a bundle ?= no
  8. Does customer care help? = no
  9. Do you feel like slapping someone ? = YES

With Safaricom on the other hand we have this wonderful site www.safaricom.com/bundles that lets you buy bundles direct from the browser. Doesnt matter your device all you need is airtime on it.

Money and customer loyalty is not rocket science. How do Orange imagine iPad users on their network will top up, buy bundles and happily browse?

SMH.

Update

I have just received a call from orange and they are trying to sort me out. They also say they are in the final stages of creating a web portal to carry out such activities on non USSD compatible gadgets. Thumbs up!

Update 2

They have since launched a web portal through which you can manage any no. that you own or use. Now buying bundles and loading airtime is a breeze. Kudos !! You can find it here http://myaccount.orange.co.ke

Tablet awesomeness

I have recently gotten access to a monster of a machine at least when it comes to its price tag and am impressed so far.

The iPad 2 is a gloriously easy machine to use and much is to be expected with the kinda mulla you will shell out to own one of these babies( come to think of it this is a grown up). Just about everything advertised about it works as well as you expect it to and I now understand why apple fanboys exist. It is sleek, light, and holds charge for longer than it will take kplc to screw you.

I believe the guy who said the apple guys are really obsessed with user experience. It is said android gadget makers are obsessed with the gadget itself what with the manufacturers competing who’s contraption is more complex, has the most rediculously intimidating name and annoying as hell to use with next to no regard to Agatha who just wants to take pretty pictures and put them on Facebook. The apple guys on the other hand don’t bother to include bluetooth file transfer coz lets face it, that protocol is bloody slow and will turn any smile into a scowl. Scowls are not good for business and Apple know that.

It is said that touching the screen reprioritizes the processor to focus on whatever it is your finger wants done. That makes for awesome user experience. Android on the other hand will do no such thing and will proceed with downloading some obscure update that you didn’t want anyway and thus turn your tablet/phone into a sloth.

Just finished updating the pad and can’t say it was a pain but the update download was 750mb. Thank the heavens campus net is on steroids and offline updating is possible.

Mission 2012 is to get a nice ice cream sandwich based tablet.

What’s your plan?