Windows Phone 7 RTMs
In time to be on smart phones by the Christmas season, Windows Phone 7 was released to manufacturing (RTM) today. The product and technology behind it replaces that used by Windows Mobile since version 5.0 in 2005.

Today, mobile devices are the new PCs – with companies like Apple and Google dominating an industry that once pretty much was handed to Microsoft on a silver platter. Today, only dominating the desktop just doesn’t cut it. The question now becomes, will Microsoft MCTS Training gain enough momentum with Windows Phone 7 to become a major player in the smart phone industry?

Looking back at the personal computer industry since the 1980s, over time we saw it consolidating down to just a few major platforms. Back then, there was a wide number of players – including Apple, Atari, Commodore, Sinclair, Texas Instruments, and IBM – offering a vast range of products and operating systems; the majority of them incompatible with each other. As the market for clones that could run IBM/MS-DOS grew, the ability to run Microsoft Flight Simulator and Lotus 1-2-3 became the telling measure of compatibility.

As the industry matured, so did the consolidation in the number of companies offering PC-compatible products. For years, one of Microsoft’s best assets has been their developer network, and that in fact is a major reason why they “won the desktop war.”

A significant question for Microsoft is if there will be parallels between the smart phone and desktop markets. The challenge facing them today is huge, with the Android and iPhone well established. But not all cell phones in use are smart phones (see http://www.networkworld.com/community/node/64790), so there is still an opportunity to make headway. Moreover, Microsoft, besides having a developer network, is above all a marketing company. One of the things they are able to offer and market is device security and management.

Only time will tell whether Santa will be stuffing Microsoft MCITP Certification stockings this Christmas, and if that will be with something other than coal.