Friday, November 7, 2008

Quick Updates on Microsoft Mobility

I've said before, Microsoft has to continue to make a lot of noise even if it doesn't have new products on hand to keep newcomers, iPhone and Android, and new products from old friends, Bold and Storm, from dictating the discussion and occupying the hearts and minds of mobile warriors.

Again, I point to Palm as what may happen.  But that's not likely with Microsoft.  I like Redmond and over the years, they have driven innovation, albeit awkwardly.

So, it's great news to hear that Microsoft is working on Windows 6.5, whatever that is.  I'm just guess here but since no one knows what 6.5 is and what features it will include, it is likely to hold Microsoft loyalists over until WM 7 in late 2009 or 2010.

But this scares me a bit. If 6.5 comes out in the middle of 2009, we're not going to see version 7 until well into 2010.  By then, iPhone 4.0 and Android 3.0 will be around as well.  Let's look down the road, my friends.  I'm guess what Microsoft will eventually go the route Apple did with OS X for the iPhone by stripping out as much as they can for the mobile version.

Then this is this piece of information that I had to read and reread, clear the cache and see if it was still on the web.  What is it?  When pressed, Balmer was very candid about Apple's use of Webkit and "may look at that" while they march onward towards IE 8.

In case you don't already know, Webkit is the Web rendering engine behind Safari and mobile version of Safari on the iPhone.  It is also being used by Nokia and Google's Chrome.

And lastly, a while back, we all learned Verizon Wireless, after going through a few rounds with Google on the 700Mhz spectrum auction and the FCC, has decided to make Google the default search engine on their phones.  I guess that was not 100%.  Oops.

InfoWorld's post was about a WSJ article.   Neither Google, Microsoft, and Verizon Wireless cared to comment on the matter.  So, VW has not made their decision on who to use.  With Microsoft, VW supposedly stands to get more from the deal.  Regardless, I have to agree with Profession Keith Hylton of BU School of law.  This is competition and ultimately, consumers win out.

However, I have to wonder about the motives of the eventual winner.  How much control does VW get as a result as well?  I'm almost certain there will be a provision in the final agreement that will allow VW to define what "open" is and lock consumers out from true competition.

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