My flight from Alaska back to Washington was delayed last night due to a problem with the wing and my first thought went to the Twilight Zone episode where the monster was tearing apart the wing as they flew. I then boarded another plane, fell asleep, and eventually made it home. When I landed I saw all of the Microsoft Nokia news and thought I might really be in a Twilight Zone show or I was still dreaming, but after jumping on Twitter I realized that my ultimate smartphone dream had come true.
I just posted my initial thoughts on the Nokia – Microsoft partnership on my ZDNet site and won’t repeat everything I wrote over there. As you know I am obviously a fan of Nokia smartphones and have been for years. You might also have picked up in my writing here that I am a Windows Phone 7 fan. I am probably one of the very few people in the world that have a love of both platforms and also quite a bit of usage of both under my belt. Needless to say, I am quite ecstatic about the news and think it will result in the best of both resulting in a product that easily competes and in many respects blows away the iOS and Android competition.
There is a great post on the Nokia Conversations site where Steve Ballmer and Stephen Elop provide so strong words to support this partnership, including the following:
Together, we have some of the world’s most admired brands, including Windows, Office, Bing, Xbox Live, NAVTEQ and Nokia. We also have a shared understanding of what it takes to build and sustain a mobile ecosystem, which includes the entire experience from the device to the software to the applications, services and the marketplace.
Today, the battle is moving from one of mobile devices to one of mobile ecosystems, and our strengths here are complementary. Ecosystems thrive when they reach scale, when they are fueled by energy and innovation and when they provide benefits and value to each person or company who participates. This is what we are creating; this is our vision; this is the work we are driving from this day forward.
There are other mobile ecosystems. We will disrupt them.
There will be challenges. We will overcome them.
Success requires speed. We will be swift.
Together, we see the opportunity, and we have the will, the resources and the drive to succeed.
I LOVE everything they are saying here and like the specifically stated they do indeed need to be swift and get something out this year.
I wrote the following points as I see them from a user perspective:
- All cameras in Microsoft’s smartphones have sucked, but Nokia rules the world with Carl Zeiss optics and imaging technology that rivals high end dedicated cameras
- Nokia has the ONLY penta-band smartphones so it doesn’t matter who your GSM carrier is you can get 3G data support (this includes T-Mobile’s special 1700 MHz band)
- Nokia brings hardware with aluminum colored bodies, Gorilla Glass, HDMI out, USB on-the-go, amazing RF reception and call quality, long battery life, and more
- Windows Phone 7 is amazingly fast and responsive while also being unique
- Windows Phone 7 is rock solid stable and after using it since July 2010 I can confirm it is the MOST stable mobile operating system I have ever used
- Windows Phone 7 gaming rocks, Zune is fantastic, multiple Exchange support is solid, Office integration is great, and developers are building apps
- Email on Symbian blows, but on Windows Phone 7 it absolutely rocks and I prefer to use my WP7 smartphone for email handling over even my Outlook desktop client
I know that die hard Nokia fans will likely react negatively to such a deal with Microsoft, but is that due to some kind of unfounded hatred for the Microsoft name? If you try Windows Phone 7 then you may change your mind. I know that Microsoft has stumbled in the past, as has Nokia. However, there are brilliant people at both companies and the potential for amazing success is there and can be realized through this partnership.
Is anyone else excited about this partnership like I am? Stay tuned for MUCH more of my writing here as I will have a platform that I am very excited about along with hardware that I love. We’ll see how it works out with WPCentral, but since there will still be other Windows Phone 7 makers and Nokia will still make non-WP7 devices we might see both sites remain as they are too.