Matthew Panzarino’s review of Nokia’s new flagship Windows Phone 7 phone concludes that it’s very good hardware with a promising, original OS. But this promising platform hasn’t sold in anywhere near the volumes that would make many developers care about it, as Matthew finds:
Unfortunately, when I said ‘would’ in the title of this article, I meant it very literally. I would switch from the iPhone to the Lumia 800, if only it wasn’t for the apps.
The sad fact is that Windows Phone 7 will not become a major contender in the OS space until it gains massive developer support.
Nearly every Windows Phone review by iPhone owners has had approximately the same conclusion: this would be a reasonable alternative if I ever had to switch away from my iPhone, but it’s not good enough to make me switch.
Sounds a lot like every webOS-phone review. That didn’t end well.
Developers don’t rush to new platforms without very good reasons. Windows Phone won’t get widespread developer support until it sells well.
Android had a lot of help to get started from external factors: the lack of a Verizon iPhone for so long, heavily incentivized retail salespeople (from carriers freaked out about the iPhone’s dominance), and buy-one-get-one-free deals. All of these helped push Android sales very high before it had much developer support, and then the installed base was big enough that developers started paying attention.
Since there are no other factors helping Windows Phone’s sales at retail, I don’t see how it’s going to move past the state it’s in today: a platform that reviews well but effectively nobody buys.