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Motorola ditching Windows Mobile?

Motorola ditching Windows Mobile?

Motorola's current range of Windows Mobile smartphones may be its last, if rumours of defection to the Android camp are true.

Rumour has it that Motorola is ditching the Windows Mobile platform for its smartphone handsets in favour of Google's new Linux-based Android.

As reported over on BetaNews, the company has announced to the State of Florida that it is to shut down its Windows Mobile development centre in Plantation, Florida – with 77 jobs for the chop as a result, added on to the 4,000 jobs the company has already 'restructured' this month.

With the Windows Mobile development nixed, it's clear the company is hoping to concentrate on another mobile platform. While Motorola has experience with Symbian-based handsets, comments from an executive in the company's Spanish division claimed that Symbian production was to be greatly reduced this year to pave the way for a new handset based on Google's Android platform.

With no completely official announcement forthcoming from the company, it's hard to guess exactly where the future of Motorola smartphones lies – but that isn't stopping industry types speculating that Android will become the company's exclusive platform, with both Symbian and Windows Mobile ousted in favour of the open-source marvel. Whether that's the best move the company could make – especially when its financials are looking a mite peaky – remains to be seen.

With companies like HTC and General Mobile already committed to the platform, it's clear that – despite a somewhat shaky start in the T-Mobile G1 – Google's Linux-based open-source system is making waves in the industry. With Motorola clearly planning to produce Android devices – even if not exclusively – 2009 could well be the year that mobile Linux really starts to make an impact in the mainstream.

Are you hoping to see some impressive Android implementations come out of Motorola in the coming months, or should the company keep concentrating on its Windows Mobile handsets and not take the risk on a new platform? Share your thoughts over in the forums.

12 Comments

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proxess 28th January 2009, 10:46 Quote
Now thats a kick in the nuts for proprietary mobile software, even tho Symbian is going Open-Source. Curious to see how this move goes.
thefriscokid 28th January 2009, 12:16 Quote
Does anybody even buy Motorola mobiles anymore?
Zut 28th January 2009, 12:39 Quote
Meh, I'm too jaded to get excited about mobile operating systems anymore. For the 2% of the time I use my phone for something other than making calls it just isn't worth all this fuss.
perplekks45 28th January 2009, 13:09 Quote
I am not a fan of the one-does-it-all machines phones are nowerdays. I use my phone to call/text people, that's it. For music I have an iPod Touch [I know, it's more than just a MP3 player... :p], for pictures I grab my girlfriend's camera because mine's still in Germany. So basically I am just not part of the target market. Still I think there should be competition in the market and at the moment everybody seems to go Android, just like [almost] everyone went MS before. Let's see what happens.
n3mo 28th January 2009, 19:13 Quote
Windows Mobile is still lightyears behind Symbian. I used several HTC smartphones (Vox is my all-time favourite), but every time WM fails (again) my trustworthy E61i is there to save me. WM is just like any other Windows - looks and feels nice and easy, but when it comes to serious business it simply doesn't work good enough. Symbian is way better. I haven't used Android too much (still waiting for my dev pack to arrive) but it seems more like a multimedia oriented platform (although, being open-source it is very flexible)

And remember, Motorola started making Linux based phones in 2003, and most of their current high models are based on a Linux/Java platform so moving to Android seems like a natural step.
cpu121 28th January 2009, 19:19 Quote
Weren't Microsoft hinting that they wanted to reduce the range of WM models anyway so they could focus on models that could compete with the iPhone etc?
perplekks45 28th January 2009, 19:22 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by
What exactly is Windows, the normal one not Mobile, not good enough for? Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying Windows is flawless or perfect, actually far from it, but I don't see it fall short in day-to-day use in comparison to Linux. At least not for the vast majority.
Horizon 28th January 2009, 20:06 Quote
Dear Motorola,

Please die, you been milking the razer for what seems almost a decade now, every year your phones have been getting cheaper and less intuitive and from the looks it this is just clearly a cost-cutting measure. Usually i wouldn't mind but i can't imagine what piece of crap phone you are going to put android on. Switching to android isn't going to save you.
n3mo 28th January 2009, 21:13 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by perplekks45

What exactly is Windows, the normal one not Mobile, not good enough for? Don't get me wrong, I'm not saying Windows is flawless or perfect, actually far from it, but I don't see it fall short in day-to-day use in comparison to Linux. At least not for the vast majority.

You kidding me? Try running Vista in a multilayer network with more than one domain controller. Or try to control the usage of multiple network connections. Oh, wait, Windows can't do that. Link aggregation? No. QoS? No. Safety? Oh no. Parallel computing? No. load balancing? No. The list goes on and on.

Windows was made for casual, day to day usage and in that it beats any other OS (maybe not for long). Serious stuff? No Win please. Even Windows Update servers run on BSD.

Win Mobile is just like that - good for casual use, but try having a few hundred contacts and you'll see what I'm talking about. (I'm talking about business usage, that's what interests me. Symbian handles everything well, not to mention Blackberry)
Saivert 29th January 2009, 08:49 Quote
Oh and we all know internet is serious business.


(haha couldn't resist!)
perplekks45 29th January 2009, 14:45 Quote
Quote:
Originally Posted by n3mo
You kidding me? Try running Vista in a multilayer network with more than one domain controller. Or try to control the usage of multiple network connections. Oh, wait, Windows can't do that. Link aggregation? No. QoS? No. Safety? Oh no. Parallel computing? No. load balancing? No. The list goes on and on.

Windows was made for casual, day to day usage and in that it beats any other OS (maybe not for long). Serious stuff? No Win please. Even Windows Update servers run on BSD.
That's what I said, isn't it? It's not falling short on a day-to-day usage comparison with any other OS. I do however agree for servers there might be better options in certain/most scenarios. I worked for a company with a network for 2000 employees 100% Windows based. It worked. Maybe not perfect but everything worked exactly as it should.
n3mo 30th January 2009, 00:26 Quote
@perplekks45

I make a living from designing and building corporate networks, and believe me - windows always gives problems. Not a day goes by without some windows-related emergencies. Windows is good for ignorants/people that don't care how everything works and just want to browse their facebook. Windows + business = epic fail.

And yes, the "vast majority" of users fall under the "ignorants" name so windows is perfect for them, I have to agree with that, so for day-to-day usage it's ok.
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