CHOICE membership

Microsoft how can we get public debate about them and their products


#1

I have tried Apple and Android tablets, and am almost embarrassed to say I prefer Microsoft’s Windows general way of operating. Basic things like navigation and file management seem to correspond to traditional record keeping, which even with technology we end up having to maintain.

So, I switched back to MS, desktop, tablet and mobile. However, MS have dumped mobile windows, and hence their nokia mobile range. Worse this has virtually killed the windows Apps market.

Even without mobile, Tablets still need Windows apps, so fail to see the logic in dumping mobile apps.

I think the lower take up of Windows apps is largely MS own making. They have done little to help app creators to produce Windows versions of apple and android apps. As a keen sports person and coach, most of the well known sports related software tools, have a desktop admin base, (eg, Training Peaks) but virtually none have a windows app to say collect the raw live data, heart rate, trips, exercise rates, etc.

This dumping of mobile windows has had virtually no airplay in the media, be that conventional or online. MS seemed to have been able to shut that down. But without a public outcry nothing will change. Companies like MS will just get away with what ever they like.

Can you imagine the situation if Apple or Android just decide to shut up shop, and there be no means of it being widely discussed, etc. It isn’t limited to just the large IT internationals. Many companies put a huge effort into locking customers in, but just as easily, as MS has demonstrated, can dump us when it suits them.

MS have a feedback web page, https://microsoftfeedback.com.au/ but its content is closed from public view, no-one else knows what others are concerned about! Is there a well known blog, facebook page, forum, etc, where the public can be more open about such issues?


#2

All one need do is look at the sales figures to understand why windows phones were dropped. Without sales there is no interest from apps vendors, and without apps there are fewer sales, and fewer apps, … , … , …

https://www.recode.net/2017/7/17/15984222/microsoft-windows-phone-mobile-operating-system-android-iphone-ios

Microsoft decides on products based on sales and profit not on polls at the end of the day, and consumers vote with their dollars. In addition Microsoft has a ‘grand plan’ and products that are not central or have low volume have been dropped. One such product for the US market, Money, was excellent with a loyal base, but that market was seen as small and shrinking so they cut it lose.

Yes, companies ‘dump us’ for many reasons, the primary one being capitalism is unforgiving when they get P/L wrong. They also have more research projects than most are aware of playing with technologies and products, so they rightly or wrongly see too much ‘public interaction’ as noise.

One example is the Bay Area Research Center, and Jim Gray,Gordon Bell, and many other distinguished people. Another personality is George Spix, a very old friend and drinking mate from decades ago. The purpose of these references is a taste of what they have behind the curtains.


#3

So, What!

This a Consumers blog! This is place where we stand up for consumers, fellow consumers.

I certainly don’t need people standing up for Microsoft of all companies. Next thing you will be justifying Apple, Samsung, MS, etc, charging more in Australia than overseas, and supporting them stopping Australians buying from overseas online providers.

MS has done very little to help ensure that Windows versions of apps needed by other major companies, as Apple and Android do.

Apps are a complimentary product. Apps market their hardware; hardware markets their apps!

Presumably Windows tablets will be the next to go! Like with the mobile the traditional and online media will say nothing, despite the impact it will have.


#4

I have no idea how you thought @TheBBG was ‘standing up for Microsoft’ let alone how you know what he will be doing next. Are we reading the same post?

As consumers we are at times beneficiaries of the realities of the market, and a times victims. I don’t think any amount of consumer advocacy (something @TheBBG spends a considerable amount of time doing) is going to help when a company driven by shareholders is backing a losing horse. Nay, they just shoot the horse …

For the avoidance of doubt - I’m not a Microsoft fan either.


#5

You can join Windows Insider program and provide feedback through that and comment/uptick other feedback by others. While not quite public it is certainly seen and commented on by other users.

Then as to other more public forums and blogs there are many and all are similar, all are different. By that I mean some are more suited to some while others suit others but when looking try searching for those run by MVP and similar, to see some of these MVP:

https://msdn.microsoft.com/en-us/dd361754.aspx

https://www.mvps.org/links.html

You can also link to Microsoft on Twitter through their hashtag #WindowsCommunity and their tag @windowscommunity and via facebook at https://www.facebook.com/WindowsCommunity. They also have instagram at https://www.instagram.com/windowscommunity/


#6

Thank you.

Had a quick look and many are to the MVPs who provide technical help and ‘How to…’ which is interesting. But not really about online consumer advocacy.

I feel this is just the tip of the iceberg. If Microsoft can do it, any large company can. The Windows mobile users, although as a proportion of the market might be smaller than MS wanted, but in actual numbers is still vast. Yet they can be dumped without a whisper from the media.


#7

As a dumped customer, I haven’t been provided with any path forward. I really don’t know what to do. I don’t know what technology I need to replace, which bits to retain, likewise with software.

My older brother went the Apple route, and found that in practice that meant a total switch over of all his technology, that Apple devices and software don’t integrate with Android and MS well. He regrets that choice.

Android on the other hand doesn’t even operate that way, it isn’t trying to encompass the whole O/S market place.

In following some of Grayroll links it seems that the idea of ‘Universal’ apps is already dead, ie, apps that work on all platforms.


#8

I can still find links in 2016 that noted the death knell for Windows Phones but here is one from Forbes:

https://www.forbes.com/sites/ewanspence/2016/01/30/microsoft-windows-phone-lumia-sales-crash/#3391f4b1ad28

It’s not that it wasn’t reported, it’s more that it was expected and so the ripples were small, many had speculated the demise even in 2015 with the sharply declining sales and massive cuts to the Mobile Business workforce.


#9

Android is the Chrome book, google ‘office’ (equivalents to MS Office), google mail, Chrome browser, and so many others. I am not a fan of ‘we will assimilate you, resistance is futile’ but the Android market is tethered by the phone platform and not only is but probably will grab the consumer OS segment, and eventually on to encroach in the business market. Many businesses already have moved from MS Office to the Google Apps!

Once we ‘more mature sorts’ carried notebooks around but the younger generation and the more savvy older ones do pretty much everything on their phones, whether Android or Apple.


#10

Nor does MS product require a particular OS to work these days. Apps in the Cloud cover their Office, Storage, Messaging, CRM and so if you use Android or Apple you can still use MS Office and so on. This is what they term “Universal Apps”.


#11

Well, good luck editing high definition video video on your phone!


#12

…and your point is? Reality is that a ‘computer’ is used based on its weight, and always has been. A modern smart phone is far more powerful than a supercomputer of only 20-30 years ago albeit not all parts are balanced for computing, per se. Simplistically if the computer is large and heavy and uses lots of power it is generally used for large databases and number crunching. Phones don’t have much nor very fast memory nor much storage. As ‘yesterdays supercomputer’ reduces in size, weight, and power consumption (skipping a few generations, eg workstations, PCs, the like), once it fits into the pocket it would once have become a calculator, but now a phone used for ‘phone things’+++. Today’s supercomputer remains large, power hungry, and does number crunching and huge databases… When today’s supercomputer fits into your pocket and runs on batteries video editing might be possible, but most things will gain in complexity and data intensity, so will require the supercomputer of the day. Re supercomputing, complex problems tend to grow so the most powerful computer can almost solve the problem, and the supercomputer of the day can come close, feeding the need for an ever more powerful generation.

The original premise was presented by D.Nelson and G.Bell “The Evolution of Workstations” IEEE Circuits and Devices, July 1986. Jack Dongarra first introduced me to it and inspired my “Light Talk on a Heavy Topic” at a few conferences some years ago.