Feeds

Finger crossing won't lure iPhone coders to Windows Mobile

Microsoft's miscalculation compounded

Secure remote control for conventional and virtual desktops

To attract enough iPhone developers to Windows Mobile to help juice its sagging influence, Microsoft needs not only to give them a better platform to code upon and overcome the lure of other platforms, it needs to insprire confidence that it's a vital, expanding company.

But it isn't.

Microsoft may still be the 800-pound gorilla of what used to be called "personal computing," but its influence is shrinking. Slowly, to be sure, but the trend lines are unmistakeable.

Global PC market share numbers are devilishly difficult to calculate. One moderately well-accepted source, for example, is Net Applications, which bases its calculations on browser usage. But even their numbers are soft, and vary according to the methododolgy they use.

Using their latest methodology, Country Level Weighting, Net Applications shows Windows to be drifting slowly downward, from 94.88 per cent last September to 93.04 this July. Mac OS X, on the other hand, is rising slowly upward, from 3.73 per cent to 4.86. Linux is rising as well, from 0.86 per cent to 1.05.

These numbers, by the way, are heavily influenced by emerging markets such as India, China, and Brazil. Windows has far more - and faster growing - competition in the US, for example.

Imperial destiny

Net Applications' market share numbers for browsers are arguably more reliable. And the news isn't good for Microsoft here, either. Internet Explorer usage has sunk from 74.18 per cent in September of last year to 67.68 this July. During the same period, Firefox rose from 19.07 per cent to 22.47, and Safari from 2.82 per cent to 4.07.

All empires grow, peak, and then decline. Windows 7 or no Windows 7, Microsoft is in phase three.

The days of the desktop are winding down. Content-creation and business productivity are moving to laptops, where Microsoft still retains a significant advantage. But content consumption and business communication are moving to smartphones, where it does not. And smartphones are becoming more powerful computing platforms with each silicon generation.

And Microsoft is behind the curve. How far? Well, last week their big news was that they were going to release an Objective-C wrapper that'd allow developers to easily slip Bing search results into apps. iPhone apps, that is. ®

The essential guide to IT transformation

More from The Register

next story
The Return of BSOD: Does ANYONE trust Microsoft patches?
Sysadmins, you're either fighting fires or seen as incompetents now
Munich considers dumping Linux for ... GULP ... Windows!
Give a penguinista a hug, the Outlook's not good for open source's poster child
Intel's Raspberry Pi rival Galileo can now run Windows
Behold the Internet of Things. Wintel Things
Linux Foundation says many Linux admins and engineers are certifiable
Floats exam program to help IT employers lock up talent
Microsoft cries UNINSTALL in the wake of Blue Screens of Death™
Cache crash causes contained choloric calamity
Eat up Martha! Microsoft slings handwriting recog into OneNote on Android
Freehand input on non-Windows kit for the first time
Linux kernel devs made to finger their dongles before contributing code
Two-factor auth enabled for Kernel.org repositories
prev story

Whitepapers

Implementing global e-invoicing with guaranteed legal certainty
Explaining the role local tax compliance plays in successful supply chain management and e-business and how leading global brands are addressing this.
Top 10 endpoint backup mistakes
Avoid the ten endpoint backup mistakes to ensure that your critical corporate data is protected and end user productivity is improved.
Top 8 considerations to enable and simplify mobility
In this whitepaper learn how to successfully add mobile capabilities simply and cost effectively.
Rethinking backup and recovery in the modern data center
Combining intelligence, operational analytics, and automation to enable efficient, data-driven IT organizations using the HP ABR approach.
Reg Reader Research: SaaS based Email and Office Productivity Tools
Read this Reg reader report which provides advice and guidance for SMBs towards the use of SaaS based email and Office productivity tools.