"Companies -- lots of them -- are still buying Windows Mobile smart phones, and Microsoft Corp. doesn't want to let iPhone mania make them forget. During Microsoft's most recent fiscal year, 325 enterprises purchased at least 500 Windows Mobile phones, with many buying many more, said Scott Rockfeld, group products manager for the mobile communications business at Microsoft, in a Friday interview. "
With all of the hype surrounding the iPhone 2.0 launch recently, which includes some capabilities to synchronize against some of your Exchange data directly with the server, Microsoft doesn't want IT pros to lose sight of the fact that Windows Mobile is still very big in business, although still behind RIM's popular Blackberry platform. Even at that, there are a lot of companies with RIM's BES server that use Windows Mobile devices, and over 100 are decommissioning their BES server. The article also mentioned one company buying 10,000 Windows Mobile devices but wouldn't give the name of the company, speculating only that it might be Wal-Mart, the world's largest private employer.
It occurs to me that the iPhone's sales tend to seem so impressive largely because there is only one model available. A company like HTC, or Nokia, or Sony Ericsson, will release a whole portfolio of devices with different strengths and weaknesses and greatly outsell the iPhone. If Apple did the same, release several devices at once (e.g. not stopped the first gen iPhone and released an iPhone Nano and iPhone Shuffle with the 3G), then their sales figures would also be split amongst several models and wouldn't give the false impression that the iPhone sales figures have given.
Obviously this gets writ large when OS's on mobiles are compared - with Nokia's Symbian and Windows Mobile far outstripping the iPhone OS. I can see the appeal of the iPhone, but I couldn't live with its limitations myself.
Ok, that aside, I believe the number of people that have bought an iPhone is extremely significant. While there may be some companies that have purchased large quantities of iPhones for their staff, I believe that the majority of the phones have been bought by individuals. Smartphones (including PPC phones) have been, for the most part, targeted for business use rather than personal. As a result, advertising to the public has been no more exciting than a soap commercial. Most of the general public I run into have WinMo devices because of work. However, all of the people I know that have iPhones, bought them by choice. So, to me, this means that the majority of the iPhones sold were bought for want rather than need. Whereas WinMo devices tend to be purchased for the opposite reasons. That is why I think the sales numbers are significant...want vs need. There will always be fans of one platform or another (I am a HUGE fan of WinMo) but there is no denying that the sheer number of iPhones sold in such a short period of time is truly impressive. I think if WinMo wants the public back, they will have to re-work the OS to be more "finger friendly", while maintaining all of the current capabilities, and implementing hardware that would more than satisfy the needs of the "power users". We need to be excited again! What Apple has now is what we had back in 2000 when Windows became "handheld" for the first time. I also believe that Dale Coffing had the right word to describe the single most defining factor that drives people to CHOOSE one product and stay with it for years....Passion. That's what iPhone users have now and WinMo users need rekindled. Please take all of this for what it is...just my humble opinion.
My recent experience may serve to illustrate why (For the USA based International traveler.), iPhone may not be ready for prime time.
I took my iPhone along on a week-long trip to Ecuador. I left on 7/11, so I wasn't able to download the v. 2.0 software to my last generation iPhone. Thus, I also carried my HP iPAQ 6945 with me and put the SIM in it for most of the trip. I was concerned by the huge data bills some were racking up, because of data roaming and its polling function. The iPAQ was much easier to use due to its ability to have the WiFi turned on while the GSM/GPRS radio is off. The iPhone allows you to turn of data roaming too but its still worrisome.
Anyway, I've determined that I'll wait for the Sony Xperia X1 to hit the market, before I jump to but the new iPhone. Personally, I like the iPhone but it's like back when I had a Compaq Aero handheld and found myself envious of folks with Palms. Palm had more software and peripherals available then compared to the early WM devices. Anyone remember when you had to shop for your software based on the processor in your device?
One finger typing is too slow and composing a large email on the tiny iPAQ 6945 screen is a pain. So I carried yet a third device: My Palm TX and its folding keyboard. I think the Xperia X1 could be usable for my travel. Thus, for me, the wait-a-thon continues....
Current: 16GB 3G iPhone. 32GB iPhone 4G Gone: Can't tell ya'... My wife might find out
Apple will not make it into the large company I work for. Here is a response from our IT dept:
The release of Apple’s latest version of their iPhone (PDA) has generated a lot of interest and questions around its readiness for primetime connection to any corporate enterprise network and service.
They (iphone) are not ready to meet the minimum requirements necessary for risk mitigation and compliance with (company name) network security policy.
The iPhone 3G”s use of Microsoft’s ActiveSync capability is not secure enough potentially allowing risk from a compromised mobile device (PDA) where as the Blackberry and Goodlink solutions eliminate this risk outright.
Because of the increased risk associated with Microsoft’s ActiveSync, (company name) will be continuing to limit the options to Blackberry or Goodlink for mobile device (PDA) use.
Does that make since that ActiveSync is a security risk?