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RIM has a stranglehold on corporate users and iPhone has made impressive strides into businesses.  Is Windows Phone suitable and ready to get down to business?

RIM just keeps on chugging along despite constant predictions of it’s demise.  Most of this continued growth comes from corporate customers that trust their BlackBerrys to get the job done.  RIM recognizes the importance of the consumer market and is certainly doing what it can to capture more mindshare there, but it’s success comes from a legacy in the business world.  In contrast, the Apple’s iPhone has the legacy of being a great personal device.  I’m convinced it’s popularity in business comes from employees pressuring their bosses and IT staff into getting the iPhone simply because it’s what they wanted.

When Microsoft first started talking about Windows Phone they made a point of saying it’s a consumer-oriented product and that Windows Mobile would continue to be it’s business offering.  I’m not too sure they actually meant that.  Perhaps they did initially think that a possibility but I am sure they changed their minds as they watched interest in Windows Mobile take a nose dive.  The only hold-outs are going to be those that need Windows Mobile because they are running a custom solution that has not been ported to another platform.  Whether by choice or not, Microsoft’s future with business (for mobility) lies with Windows Phone.  Is it a good choice for business though?

 

Business user POV

Let’s start by looking at this from the business users point of view.  Will Windows Phone 7 do what most business users need it to?  Well, that depends.  As I have said in the past, what Windows Phone does well, it does VERY well.  The OS itself is simple to learn and use and applications are very consistent.  Windows Phone is very fluid and core functions load quickly and work well.  Most business users need solid communications, good browsing and fast access in an easy to use phone.  Windows Phone certainly delivers on these. Whether you like the UI itself or not there is no denying its simplicity and speed.

The email client is a joy to use with its quick access to unread, flagged and urgent messages.  Exchange support is excellent and allows for multiple accounts. There is full html support as well as pinch to zoom, a feature you don't see in email often.  Even Office document support (viewing and editing) is fantastic.  Psst, I starting this a Word doc on my laptop.  I emailed it to myself and saved it on my Windows Phone for editing.

This certainly doesn't mean that all corporate users will flock to Windows Phone but if they were handed one they would be able to do all they need.

 

Corporation POV

Its fine that Windows Phone can do what is needed by users but will the corporations they work for feel confident enough to buy them?  Perhaps not, but they really shouldn't shy away. 

Windows Phone is available from a number of manufacturers and carriers.  This is the kind of choice that helps IT departments stick with their current provider and answer the demands of picky users.  Choice is good!

Since Windows Phone is easy to use there will probably be less need for user support.  In the months I have been using mine I haven't had problems in figuring things out and it is just rock solid.  The need for IT support should be fairly low as well, Exchange setup is so simple even I can do it. (gasp!)

Included with Windows Phone is support for Sharepoint, Microsoft's document sharing platform.  I don't use this myself but any corporations that do will have the ability to add their Windows Phones to the server.  OneNote is also built in, something that will appeal to those getting hooked on it.

Developing custom apps for Windows Phone is certainly an easy process but I'm not so sure how easy it is to load them on user devices.  I'm not a developer, so I don't have answers on app distribution but in talking to developers I understand development is pretty easy.  Honestly, most businesses won't need custom development anyway.

 

Conclusion

In saying all of the above I don't mean to suggest Windows Phone is better than other platforms but rather point out that for many it is capable.  If a business needs a mobile platform that does email and browsing well with minimal intervention Windows Phone is a good option.


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"Is Windows Phone ready for business?"


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Lhieve Stampede HTC HD7 wow! they need more improvement and more application right now this present day and the economy is down we need a reliable communication device which is very useful for every day living very simple! HD7 shld have a GPS for free! thats what ppl are looking for all in one! because of the economy!
Tony Ward It would be better if Microsoft teamed up with Google to make dual boot devices, and I predict that in 12 months Nokia will run android and Microsoft will have dual boot devices, ios will still be around but be only as a limited edition type os, if Steve jobs pulls his finger out of his arse and backs Google then all future phones will be made by apple and have a android/ios hybrid operating system, only one will win this war and if Google and apple join sides then there will some fantastic devices made, remember Sega and Nintendo? Click "like" if you agree!
Raj Madan Idiots cannot read. Windows phone not windows mobile. People talking about their HD2 STFU; HTC destroyed that phone with their shitty UI. WP7 is clearly ready for anything. Email and social networking is easy to setup and UI is clean easy to use.
Jay Van de Haar When will the next windows phone 7 update be?
Talon Meyer office mobile. what more do you need?
Eric Kroh depends on company servers..if they are using WM hardware..then a WM device makes more sense..if you have a BB..all they r good for is instant email..keyboards r a bit cramp compared to other qwertboards
Marti Ruiz Blackberry and windows phoner good for business android for entertainment , ios for kids and grandparents
Aaron Eugene Rexwinkle Well said John
John Zanatta Windows Phone 7 is not Windows Mobile! I am a corporate user of Windows Phone and have no complaints. It has met all of me needs and syncs everything that I need. Plus I never have to reboot and don't worry about freezes. I'm looking forward to the first update and what it brings. Windows Phone is Corporate Business.
Ramon Quintero Really the question is windows phone 7 ready for business. Not if Android is better. Wp7 is ready for business. I own one and love it. And seriously how many companies actually use Android for business. I'm guessing not many
Arnold Herrera Android is amazing! Super customizable! Windows has a sick ui and if polished a bit/a lot...it will be a great platform i had it for 28 days(samsung focus) and was really happy with it but decided to return it cuz of hardware issues but blacberry owns with email capabilities and business apps(even tho they are stupid expensive). But over all they are all really different and u have to choose whats ur preference and what will u be needing more. And that includes carrier choice. Whoever provides better service at home and/or work should be your carrier. Eventually they all want only one thing.....YOUR MONEY! Carriers only pretend to be ur friend lol. Remember....they r all businesses! Lol
Don Harris I had the hd2 and tried the hd7.They will develop but right android has them beat.
Justin Duino Android all the way. Micro$oft just sucks all around
Phillip McGriff I believe Windows phone is always prepared 4 business, I've used windows phones for a lot of business activity. The new platform just has too many limitations. With that said, Windows is gonna have too step their game up in order for consumers too gravitate towards the O.S. I owned several windows devices, but the freezing, constant re booting and limited batter life with the stylist becomes aggravating over a period of time... I was anticipating the arrival of the "Arrive" but the specs don't give any other O.S. Great competition. Windows Phones for right now will just be there. sad to say but true :(. Hopefully within the next 6 Months or so Windows will step their game up, apps, features and all! Especially with the consideration of creating 4G compatible devices with video chat front facing cameras...
Brad Freeman It's only good for the select few that actually want/need it.
David Piepho No way! HaHa!
Ahmed Eltawil We've got Windows 7, Windows Phone and soon coming Windows Tablet/Slate. Microsoft will 'eventually' have an ecosystem.
Elizabeth Tripp Tried it for a day and returned it cause I couldn't send video messages via text. Went back to iPhone.
Jubayer Dex Ahmed symbian is way better than windows phone with so much limitation just ignore windows.
Saketh Katragadda Been using it for a few email accounts, syncing with stocks apps and such, no problems whatsoever.
Jasé Phillip no I will give windows a year
Paul Giuoco Have 4 email accounts including exchange for work, Netflix, my Zune pass and music, Xbox live, all running really smoothly...no complaints here...also how many here don't know the difference between windows phone and windows mobile...a lot.
Robert Henderson-Farley Droid is the new tomorrow, today!
Steven Espinoza Hd2 user here rooted it to android though, own a galaxy s 4g now
Dale Rosier Jr. i had the hd2. windows is terrible period..
Cesar Nevarez no they fucking suck ass hole
Esa Edvik give it 2 years.
Ehsan Wedee I guess they are...they're using them here where I work.
Anonymous I used a windows phone for about 2 weeks and went back to blackberry. Nothing but headaches out of the HD7....I am a corporate user




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