Just because they're late to the game doesn't mean they can't pull it together! Admittedly, a cohesive eco system isn't the first thing that pops into mind when thinking of Microsoft, but the few times they've jumped into hardware they have done well. The Xbox, The Xbox 360, and even the surface have all been considered the best in their class by many.
If they can somehow wrangle the divisions together enough to make it actually feel like a vertical system, it could be very good. I suspect they've been thinking of doing this for quite some time as the metro interface is designed to be functional across the entire spectrum of hardware they use.
Microsoft has very high perseverance.. They didnt build the first OS yet they have the most popular OS. They didnt build the first browser yet has the most used browser now. They were very late into gaming consoles, yet beat sony and nintendo and became the leader. Ofcourse that is not the case in Phones yet... but lets wait and see ..
MS can definitely use Nokia's hardware expertise. XBOX 360 had chronic thermal issues resulting in the notorious "red ring of death." And the Sufrace RT debacle is another example of Microsoft's hardware ineptitude.
I'm unfamiliar with the surface RT's hardware issues. I had absolutely zero interest in RT since it wasn't the full operating system so I wasn't following it. From what I understand, the only hardware issue with the Surface Pro is the short battery life.
I would agree with Rick and add that it is a challenge to overcome competitiors and complete ecosystems that already have critical mass and momentum. You have to leapfrag the competition and that is a monumental task in handsets.
eewiz wrote: [Microsoft] didn't build the first browser yet has the most used browser now.
According to Wikipedia, Google Chrome has higher usage than Explorer. Explorer's share will only decrease as desktop PCs are used less. I'll let others compare Windows usage to Android and iOS, but if they haven't already overtaken Windows I suspect it will happen pretty soon. And if "popular" means that people "like the OS" rather than "are required to use the OS", I suspect that others are far more "popular".
Companies reinvent themselves all the time, so there's no reason to think Microsoft can't do the same thing.
Apple was always a closed shop, unlike Microsoft, but so what? Apple went almost extinct, until Steve Jobs reinvented it from a very struggling walled garden PC maker to a fashion-trendy gadget company. It did stay "vertically integrated," but that's hardly enough to guarantee success.
Microsoft was just a software house for IBM. Then it became the premier software house for PCs and servers, becoming bigger than the IBM it was serving before. Weir, right? Now it's getting serious about the hand held gadget market, and by all accounts, making decent products in that field. Including the Surface Pro and Windows phone. But it just got started.
It wasn't long ago that the trade press could only gush about iPhones. Now the trade press has come to realize that Android is also a power to contend with, yet even that is a relatively new phenomenon, let's not forget. All Microsoft has to do is stick with it, and trhe marketplace will see another adjustment.
Bert wrote: Now [Microsoft is] getting serious about the hand held gadget market, and by all accounts, making decent products in that field. Including the Surface Pro and Windows phone. But it just got started.
Microsoft is by no means new to the hand-held gadget market. The Zune portable media player was introduced in 2006 and discontinued in 2011. The Kin phone was introduced in 2010 and discontinued within a year. Microsoft has tried to make in-roads in hand-held devices, but has yet to inspire the marketplace.
That may be true, but perhaps they didn't give those products a chance.
The Surface Pro and the Windows phone appear to be competent products, by all accounts I've read. They need to stick it out. You can't expect a 50 percent market share a year or two after product introduction.