If you follow mobile, you are quite aware of the recently wrapped Mobile World Congress (MWC) in Barcelona. There were many highlights far from our shores, though not nearly as sexy as in the US. But, remember… this is the “World” Congress after all. None the less, even in the announcing of devices like the Samsung Galaxy Beam (easily sharing video via a built-in projector) and the HTC One series phone, Windows was a standout – not unlike they were at CES.
Windows took the spotlight in two ways. First, Microsoft seized the opportunity to showcase the new Windows 8 operating system. Why the Mobile World Congress for this stage? Why not? Windows 8, like iOS, showcases the connected world and the need for fewer differences between mobile and the desktop. Windows’ Metro style interface mimics and integrates with the Windows phone UI. So, why not launch the public beta at a global mobile event?
While still not ready for primetime, many have already noted much improvement in the functionality of Windows 8 since its first developer roll out. Of course, you can find out for yourself by downloading the beta here. I’m told if you can run Windows 7 now, Windows 8 is good to go. Remember: Back up your data!
Additionally, there’s always the need for technology that is “cheaper.” We all want a better deal. Smart devices that all can afford are required for mobile to truly reach its global potential.
This week, Airtel CEO Sunil Bharti Mittal called for more sub-$100 devices at MWC. While phones from ZTE and Huawei fall in this category, Microsoft and Nokia are seeking to satisfy the “middle-class” of smartphone with the introduction of the Lumia 610 (priced at $250).
The Lumia 610 is clearly part of a strategy to help revive Nokia’s sales and to help Microsoft get a quicker foothold in the smartphone arena, where they’ve had a late start. That said, the Windows Phone is gathering support as well as good reviews, and bringing it in at a lower price point is good for us as well. One more thing… Microsoft also announced Skype for the Windows phone.
While I’m an Android mobile user and an Apple laptop user, even I’m intrigued by the new Windows offerings. For business, you owe it to yourself to consider the Windows Phone. Imagine the integration with your current Windows products.