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Old 08-14-2010, 09:53 PM   #1 (permalink)
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Default Will Windows Phone 7 end BlackBerry's enterprise dominance?

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Microsoft hasn't really jumped back into the smartphone game just yet (they technically never left, but Windows Mobile 6.5 seems ancient by now), and one writer seems to be betting that RIM has something to worry about.

Reggie Middleton, writing for Business Insider, believes that RIM is now a short play after seeing Windows Phone 7. He says, "I believe RIM is coming up short in the consumer space, and is losing technological advantage in the enterprise space."

Is he right? Well maybe, but it's not that easy. First of all Microsoft has missed an entire cycle in the smartphone world so they have some catching up to do. Those companies who already have a large stable of BlackBerry users are not just going to switch over. In an effort to go after Apple and Google Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 offering seems much more consumer driven so it's doubtful it will be competitive in the enterprise space. Microsoft will surely develop more in the enterprise space but that will take another year or two.

Mr. Middleton argues that Microsoft's smartphones will be extensions of Exchange/Sharepoint/Windows/Office servers and that's true. But, other companies including RIM can interact with Exchange so it may not be compelling enough to switch to a Microsoft handset right away.

As time goes on I think Microsoft will start taking their share of the market and five years from now they could be in the lead, but it's just way too early to tell.

Let's check back next spring and see what kind of momentum Microsoft has with Windows Phone 7. We'll have a better feel for things then.

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