When Microsoft launched Windows Phone 7 in North America on Nov. 8, the company had high hopes for its platform. It truly believed that the product it was offering to consumers and enterprise customers was the best option on the market.
Furthermore, Microsoft thought that with the help of its vendor partners, it could reverse the decline of its mobile market share, and start giving Google’s Android platform a major challenger to worry about.
But it’s clear now that Windows Phone 7 might not have what it takes to come close to matching Android. In fact, U.K. retailer MobilesPlease is reporting that Windows Phone 7 accounted for just 3 percent of its smartphone sales and less than 2 percent of all of its sales. It went on to say that Android is outselling Windows Phone 7 by a 15-to-1 margin.
Admittedly, that figure might not be the same everywhere around the world. But it effectively highlights the issues Microsoft is having. It’s also the clearest indication yet that Android is easily besting Microsoft’s counterpart.
1. The phones are better
Although Microsoft might not like to admit it, the devices running Android are far more viable than those running Windows Phone 7. Take the Motorola Droid X, for example. That device includes a 4.3-inch display and outstanding entertainment options, and it runs on Verizon’s network. Granted, the Samsung Focus running Windows Phone 7 has a 4-inch display, but it’s running on AT&T’s network. And it doesn’t have the same look and feel as the Droid X. Simply put, Android devices are more attractive.
2. There are more of them
There are just a handful of Windows Phone 7 devices on store shelves right now. That alone isn’t helping Microsoft to sell more devices. Google’s partners, on the other hand, are offering a slew of devices around the world that give consumers an ample supply of options to choose from. That’s an important distinction, and it’s definitely contributing to strong Android sales.
3. Android 2.2 is more polished
Windows Phone 7 is a fine platform that ditches the traditional gridlike design for a unique layout. But that doesn’t mean it’s better than Android. In fact, the operating system lacks full multitasking, it doesn’t have a store that can compare to the Android Market in terms of app availability, and it’s clear after using it that it’s still a first-gen product. Granted, Windows Phone 7 is a fine product, but it’s still not up to Android 2.2’s level.
4. Google’s Android Market
The Android Market is helping Google and its partners sell more Android-based devices. The store features well over 100,000 applications that range from social-networking programs to entertainment apps. Microsoft has said it plans on quickly catching up with its app marketplace, but it has a long way to go to do so and customers know that all too well.