updated 11:45 pm EDT, Wed September 14, 2011
Microsoft CEO disappointed with year-one WP7 sales
Microsoft chief Steve Ballmer during the company's Financial Analyst Meeting acknowledged that Windows Phone 7 still wasn't performing well. Treating it as a first-year wrap up, he said Microsoft phone partners hadn't sold "quite as many as I would have liked" between its October release and today. He didn't quantify the numbers, but shipments have been flat and have led to steady losses in market share.
He put most of his faith in the near term on phones running Mango, the first major yearly update to Windows Phone. It adds multitasking, Twitter and IM integration, forward-facing camera support, and a much faster and accurate Internet Explorer browser. Microsoft's current role was not to have usurped Apple or Google but to have created a genuine option for those who didn't want either Android or an iPhone.
"I'm not saying I love where we are, but I am very optimistic on where we can be," he said during the meeting.
Ballmer put Nokia at a privileged level among Windows Phone partners and saw it as a key ingredient to getting Windows Phone into relevance. Unlike HTC, LG, Samsung, and virtually every other partner to date that was making most of its success on Android and treated WP7 as a side project, Nokia consciously chose Microsoft as a way of standing out in the market. Microsoft is also known to have influenced the deal further through billions of dollars in funding through marketing and other resources.
Mango is already on the shipping Toshiba-Fujitsu IS12T in Japan but will reach North America, Europe, and the rest of the world in or near October. [via AllThingsD]