October is here and with it the impending launch of the Windows 8 Ecosystem; the primary elements of which are Windows 8 OS, The Surface (and other Windows 8 Tablets, RT and Pro) and Windows Phone 8.
Image courtesy of Microsoft Word Clipart Collection
We have already had the teasers from Nokia and HTC with the Lumia 920, 8X and 8S. Samsung is also lurking in the wings with their Ativ.
Photos via the official Nokia and HTC sites
It doesn’t take a visionary to realize that the success of the Windows 8 Phone and the 8 Ecosystem as a whole is enormously dependent on Startups and Individual App Developers fully embracing the Windows Store as a viable option for their Apps; not just the Google and Apple Stores. Windows Phone Apps will make or break this.
Microsoft needs to take a step back just before the launch and seriously analyze their successes and failures with Windows Phone 7 and learn from this.
Israel, The Startup Nation is a giant Petri Dish for App development and yet successes such as Waze apparently see little if no potential ROI in a Windows Phone version.
Alas the rumors were not true of a Waze for Windows Phone App .. my thanks to Waze for their transparency and speedy reply.
To be fair, Waze are not alone in this. Path and several other successful Apps seem to have completely ignored Windows Phone as a platform. Have they just been waiting for Windows 8 Phone to see if the market share changes and makes it worthwhile or is the effort of maintaining versions of their Apps on one more platform just not worth the effort.
Ironically, Microsoft unlike Apple is a highly active participant in both stimulating innovation and providing guidance and support at Startup level with Bizspark and their Accelerator program.
Ultimately, it is insufficient to build and launch Windows Phone 8 unless Microsoft can entice App Developers and Startups to either also or exclusively develop Windows Phone Apps and if they are truly smart they will ensure that these Apps continue to support the existing Windows Phone 7.5 customer base.
Even with 100,000+ Apps already in the Store, Microsoft cannot rely on the adage “If you build it they will come”. In the age of Lean Startups there has to be a strong reason to choose to budget Development for Windows Phone Apps over iOS, Android or (even) Blackberry.
How would you entice and encourage this?