Windows Phone will snatch biz No 2 spot from Android – analyst

BlackBerry? Who they?

Android for business is under threat from Microsoft, claims CCS Insight. The Chocolate company’s mobile OS will fall out of favour as the top alternative to Apple, says VP of Enterprise research Nick McQuire.

He sees Windows Phone, or Windows 10, as overtaking Android and BlackBerry as the second most popular OS for businesses by end of 2016. “Companies are now starting to look much more holistically,” he told El Reg. “Fast-forward from now and people are starting to look at integration.”

The move is driven by a number of factors, price is a major one with a corporate able to buy eight Windows phones for the price of one iPhone, there is increased packaging by Microsoft and the success of Office 365 are all helping to drive Windows Phone sales.

“As corporates buy apps and devices, there is much more value end-to-end in a Microsoft solution.”

While McQuire is at pains to point out that the Windows success is only for the business to business market he doesn’t just see this as being big corporates. He predicts that Windows Phone will be successful in companies that are smaller than 250 people, maybe so much smaller that they don’t have dedicated IT staff and want to offload as much IT as possible to cloud services.

For bigger companies that are developing native applications for iPhone he sees Windows, and especially Windows 10, as being the next native step, undermining Android and particularly not using web technologies.

With a strengthening Windows Phone OS market, as opposed to Microsoft Phone market, McQuire believes that device manufacturers will return to running the Seattle OS.

He believes that LG, Lenovo and Sony will look to the Windows Phone mobile OS to create differentiation from the dominance of Samsung with its plethora of low-end Android devices.

He sees Lenovo using brands strategically – either bundling Lenovo PCs and phones as a corporate sale or, ironically given the ownership history, using the Motorola brand (depending on territory).

But then Motorola has had Windows mobiles before... and Symbian and various flavours of Linux and Newton OS. Indeed, when it comes to operating systems, Motorola not particularly loyal.

McQuire’s looking two years out and seeing the Microsoft OS on Sony phones implies that there will still be Sony phones in two years’ time, which is a vote of confidence for the company – which makes great phones and greater losses.

McQuire sees Windows 10 as being the key to Dell becoming re-enthused with mobile phones and looking to sell bundles of computers and phones.

The CCS Insight view will be welcomed by Microsoft, which has been touting its "Mobile First, Cloud First" pitch for a couple of years and Windows phone OSesa lot longer. ®

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