standard Joe Belfiore Talks Windows Phone, Nokia, Whatsapp, iOS, Android and More


Joe Belfiore, head of Windows Phone development at Microsoft and hero to some Windows Phones fans, sat down with BGR India to answer a lot of questions regarding Windows Phone, the competition (iOS and Android) as well as the Apps situation. The questions are pretty detailed and lengthy, so I suggest you check them out at the source link below; but here are some things that caught my eye:

First up was an interesting question about the switch from WP 7.x to 8.X which left a lot of early adopters out in the cold, and leaving what little install base WP had at the time quite disappointed with Microsoft:

With WP8, people who had just a bought WP7 device suddenly realize that they wouldn’t get any more updates. Was that a very tough decision?

It was a very tough decision. We had many difficult and emotionally charged discussions internally and the thing about such large disruptive technology changes is that the sooner you make them, the longer you get the benefit and fewer people are negatively impacted. If we had waited to do that, the install base of people who wouldn’t get the update would have been bigger. So we tried doing it as soon as we reasonably could, once the technology was in place for the Windows kernel to be ported to ARM. It is unfortunate for those customers who got stuck like that, but it is good that a lot of app developers have continued to target them. But we think the overall better thing to do is to ensure that there are great phones at wider range of price points that have a common platform and get the same apps and we are already two years from the day we took that decision.

Next up a question regarding Nokia joining the Microsoft Family:

So what changes now that they are in-house?

We were in a position before where we had a terrific collaborative relationship where we planned our roadmaps together. They were aware of what we were doing on the OS, and we were aware of their phone lineup. We went back and forth on what would be good investments to make and I expect that to continue. We are trying to do that better and better with other hardware manufacturers as well. In the phone space we had similar discussions with companies like HTC, Samsung and LG among others. So I think that kind of engineering collaboration will remain similar to what has been in the past. It is healthy, it is excellent and it has resulted in great hardware like the Lumia 1020 as well as the Lumia 520.

I actually think the more meaningful effect for us will be in how we go to market. Now we are in a position where we can in a very balanced and thoughtful way can describe the benefits of our ecosystem, which helps all our hardware partners. But also not be colliding in how we describe the benefits of the Lumia phones. So what would happen before was, it was difficult to coordinate where our marketing money would go or what our ads would say. Now I think we are getting much better at that. I think our ability to be effective in retail stores with our messaging and advertising and the way we spend money effectively is probably the thing that will most positively change and help us. I say that because our engineering relationship was already very good.

Regarding the recent Whatsapp disappearance from the Store, which came back a while later:

What happened with WhatsApp on Windows Phone?

So what happened is that they discovered on our latest update there is a relatively obscure end user setting where users could restrict background data use in conjunction with Data Sense. What happens is if you enable that, you won’t receive WhatsApp messages and you don’t get notified. So they came to us and said that they want their users to have the awareness of that. So we have been working with them on a fix, and I believe they are already testing the fix on beta and I believe they will be deploying it back into the world soon.

Read the rest of the interview at the link below:

Thanks for the tip Alvester

About the Author

Ali is a dental school graduate currently living in Amman, Jordan; born and raised in the US, a tech lover with a serious addiction to all things sweet. He is the co-founder of GeekOnGadgets, and a senior editor at our Sister site

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