Log in

View Full Version : Then Why Do You Get to Upgrade?

Kris Kumar
10-25-2005, 12:30 PM
<div class='os_post_top_link'><a href='http://blogs.msdn.com/windowsmobile/archive/2005/10/19/482683.aspx' target='_blank'>http://blogs.msdn.com/windowsmobile/archive/2005/10/19/482683.aspx</a><br /><br /></div><i>"In the recent <a href="http://blogs.msdn.com/windowsmobile/archive/2005/10/06/477999.aspx">Why Can't I Upgrade?</a> entry, I described the economics behind why you usually don't see upgrades from one major Windows Mobile version to the next. But if you go searching around on the net, you're likely to find a few "unofficial" WM5 builds for earlier devices. What are these, where did they come from, and do you want them?"</i><br /><br />Mike Calligaro has published the part two in the <a href="http://blogs.msdn.com/windowsmobile/archive/2005/10/06/477999.aspx"><i>"Why Can't I Upgrade?" </i></a>series. Even though Mike presents some very convincing arguments to support his case, but as a Smartphone lover and <i>I-want-the-latest-tech</i> guy, it is hard to be convinced. :(

Sven Johannsen
10-25-2005, 04:13 PM
Even though Mike presents some very convincing arguments to support his case, ......., it is hard to be convinced. :(

I'm not sure he is presenting arguments to convince anyone. I think he is explaining the realities. You can dislike it, but I'm not sure how you could disagree with it.

The first article talks about the economics of releasing an upgrade and that the OEM makes a determination based on that. You may disagree with their decision, but you can't make it for them. Even if you had all the same info that they have and would make a different decision, that doesn't make their decision wrong.

The second discusses the existance of 'upgrades' that aren't offerred. The basic premise here is that they are not fully baked, and typically illegal. Not much debateable here, unless you believe some OEMs have a fully polished, ready for market upgrade and have chosen to trash it. Could be, but I doubt it. Even if it did exist, we go back to part one, economics.

To be sure, I don't like it either. I would like to have the option of upgrading my Smartphone(s) to WM5, (and my PPCs as well), but I can understand that it likely isn't in the interest of the OEM and carrier to let me, and I certainly wouldn't load a 'beta' OS on my phones. The release versions are shaky enough ;)

Kris Kumar
10-25-2005, 04:51 PM
From the technical and economical stand point - I am convinced.

But from the emotional stand point (I-want-the-latest-tech) I am not convinced. ;-)

Sven Johannsen
10-25-2005, 08:22 PM
Aw darn, I was looking for an argument. :D But that's OK, I've had lunch now and am much mellower. Time for a nap.

Mike Temporale
10-26-2005, 03:48 AM
I understand what Kris is saying. You can tell me all the reasons why it doesn't happen, but that doesn't make me want it any less.

Carriers and Microsoft really need to work together to help reduce the number of barriers in getting updates released to the end consumer.

Sven Johannsen
10-26-2005, 06:32 PM
I actually agree with the sentiments. It irks me that me 3715 isn't in line for an upgrade, though I don't think it will do anything better han it does now with WM5 on it. I'd mostly be interested in the persistant storage.

I try to remember that MS has to be very careful with their OEM partners when it comes to WM devices. They need them to support the platform with hardware. This is not like PCs where everyone and their brother is building hardware and you could go get parts and build it yourself if you wanted to, and then by a copy of Windows to slap on it.

I can imagine it wouldn't be technically all that hard to create a WM OS that pieces could be swapped out without materially effecting the hardware, with sort of a hardware abstraction layer, but the ramafications of that get into the partnership between MS and the device manufacturers.

Would new PPCs sell as well if folks could just update their current ones, or buy old ones off of eBay and update them? Would their be as much impetus for OEMs to add new features to differentiate their new models from others, if folks are just going to upgrade their current models?

I think there could be a fine line between us getting what we want and the OEMs wanting to stay in the game.

Kris Kumar
10-26-2005, 11:50 PM
I think there could be a fine line between us getting what we want and the OEMs wanting to stay in the game.

Good point...

Sven Johannsen
10-27-2005, 03:41 AM
We've done this before, but I don't think we had a really new OS to think about. Let me set the scene. We will narrow this to phones. We all know that predominantly people get phones from carriers, generally with a substantial subsidy. Why do carriers 'give away' phones? Obviously to sell the Contract. They want you locked in for some length of time. They don't care all that much about your phone needs, what they are looking for is a phone with enough geek/sex/cool appeal that you'll sign a Contract to get it.

Now look at upgrades. What does the carrier get out of them? If you get it from MS or the phone OEM, likely you'll now have a phone that you'll be happy with through the term of your contract. That's not what the carrier is looking for. He wants you to want a new phone badly enough to extend that contract. Maybe they could offer upgrades for extensions. So...

How long would you extend your contract for to get that WM5 upgrade on your present phone? 6mo, 1yr?

If at the same time you could get a brand new phone as an upgrade, for say $100 and 1 yr or 2 extension. Which is more attractive?

My gut says that most would opt for the new phone, which means a carrier wouldn't be inclined to push MS or the OEM for an upgrade, even though my gut says that would actually be more advantageous for the carrier. Less outlay to get the contract extension.

What do you think? Which would you do?

P.S. don't just think about yourself, because I expect there are more folks here that will pay full price for an unlocked phone than the average public.

Kris Kumar
10-27-2005, 04:00 AM
I was watching one of the PDC sessions. I will be posting a link to it soon. ;-) The Motorola rep pretty much made it clear that the cellular industry is one of the fastest moving industry. There are tons of cool phones coming out every day. Carriers just can't stay on top of it. They have to test and certify these phones for their networks. So they prefer to devote their time on the ones with the new hardware. Because the hardware is still the most distinguishing aspect.

Kris Kumar
10-27-2005, 04:16 AM
And there are very few who are committed to Windows Mobile. [ When I mean few, I am talking about the overall market, not just the readers on this site. I know the readers on this site are totally committed to Windows Mobile. ;-)] The carriers like to focus on the wider market. The wider market still likes to go after better camera, video, cool looks, size etc. Windows Mobile software is probably last on their list.

And Motorola rep even talked about how the US carriers are focused on the consumers and they are not paying much attention to the enterprise market. Hence Windows Mobile devices are having a tough time. But once the user interface on Windows Mobile gets better (read easier) they will start providing them to the consumers, and that is when it will pick up.

Sven Johannsen
10-27-2005, 05:24 PM
And Motorola rep even talked about how the US carriers are focused on the consumers and they are not paying much attention to the enterprise market.

How ironic with MS beating the enterprise, enterprise, enterprise drum.