Home > Marketing, Mobile Phones, The Basics > Microsoft and Mobile – KIN failure

Microsoft and Mobile – KIN failure

Microsoft Windows Mobile

Microsoft Windows Mobile

No doubt you would have heard that Microsoft’s attempt at Mobile Phone manufacturer failed. They have officially stopped the KIN mobile phone line. The question is WHY?

The truth of the real world is that no one can be the best at everything, that’s just a general rules that has been proven time and time again. Companies and people who believe they are the best at everything are just simply fooling themselves. That being said, in the business world companies need to adapt to actually be a challenge to competitors. This adaption sometimes leads to venturing into new markets. We have all become to familar with this concept as it clearly seen in almost everything Google has done. Search Engine, Maps, GPS, Travel, TV, Mobile and the list continues.

The problem Microsoft has is that whenever it takes to venture out into new markets, instead of starting on a clean slate – they use everything they have build up over the year to define the outcome of the new product.

Take windows mobile 5 right up to 6.5, it was built on windows – so instead of realizing that the mobile OS is going to mobile phones, they just basically took a copy of windows, added some icons in make a task bar and drop down menu and shipped it out as an OS for a mobile phone.

Now don’t get me wrong, the concept of WinMo was great and it has all the possibilities of being an awesome business orientated mobile phone OS but it lacks what Apple and Google have done from a user experience point of view.

Microsoft then put there hand to creating the Kin, but at a time when people are more aware of iPhones and Android based devices. That’s the biggest mistake – marketing 1 0 1 – don’t put your crappy product out there when there are better cheaper mobiles that do and offer more than yours.

Come on guys – what makes the KIN line better than a Motorola running Android? I mean Nokia’s dying breed of smartphones with Symbian is still a far better choice than the KIN.

Now the timing of all this is crucial, Microsoft are hoping to come back in the market with Window Mobile 7 or as they call it Windows Phone 7. This is really where they should have started. Before making a crappy product make something you’re actually good at – software.

Some genius at Microsoft forgot this.

I still believe Microsoft has an opportunity to come back provided they get Windows Mobile 7, right the first time. If they screw this up there is no way they can be considered a serious competitor to Android, iOS, Symbia, Maemo, MeeGo and BlackBerry.

They should are look at targeting the right audience – the KIN was aimed at the social savvy younger audience, again some genius at Microsoft should have done more research about what market would be interested in a Microsoft mobile device. That research would have shown them that the market is the business orientated person. That’s who you target Microsoft not the socially savvy, networked younger generation – We’re too clever for your lame concept of what type of mobile we would want.

In all fairness, I think Microsoft is very good at creating awesome software for PC’s I think they have a good model for business orientated mobile devices. Their shortcoming is a failure capitalize on the functionality with good user experience – a PC is not a mobile device. A windows user does not expect a PC experience on a mobile phone.

Steve Ballmer, you should fire your head of user experience for mobile and the marketing person that convinced you that selling to a younger socially savvy audience was the way to go.

PS – If you going to do something – DO IT RIGHT!


  1. 24/07/2010 at 5:03 am

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