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Too little – Too Late?

Microsoft late to marketThere have been a many recent articles on the launch of Windows 7 mobile.

Most have praised Microsoft for getting it right this time, but as Walt Mossberg puts it in his WSJ column, “My conclusion is that Microsoft has used its years in the smartphone wilderness to come up with a user interface that is novel and attractive, that stands out from the Apple and Google approaches, and that works pretty well.”

Mossberg goes on to explain, “despite having all that time to study its rivals, Microsoft has inexplicably omitted from Windows Phone 7 key features common, or becoming so, on competitive phones.”

Talk about damning with faint praise. Microsoft takes almost four years to respond to the iPhone, and the best they can do is pretty well?

From a new product innovation standpoint, Microsoft absolutely had to reestablish itself in mobile devices – especially as these easier to use operating systems continue to disrupt their core PC business as the iPad grows and a wave of WebOS and Android tablets hits the market.

So the real question is whether it’s just too little, too late. Apple was there nearly 4 years ago, Palm (now HP) and Android followed 2 years later, but when you’re the last to arrive at the party, you better show up with a pretty spectacular hostess gift. Maybe the integration of Microsoft Office, will be enough, but can you imagine how much more powerful that would have been if they’d been there just a year earlier?

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