You can trust Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer to have an opinion on everything tech. A few years ago, he was (in)famously involved in a diatribe against the just announced first generation iPhone. He was made to eat his words as Apple went on to make history with the iPhone. For the next few years, as Apple stomped on the smartphone sector with authority, Microsoft was turned into a mere spectator. Finally, they came up with a brilliant (but commercially unsuccessful so far) product with Windows Phone 7. However, Microsoft seems all set for round 2 of the smartphones war with its newest version of Windows Phone – released a few days ago. And as usual, Steve Ballmer is here with his opinion on both these platforms.
In a recent interview with LinkedIn co-founder Reid Hoffman Steve Ballmer was at his best trying to pitch his company’s Windows Phone 8 platform as a viable alternative to the current kings of the ring – Android and iOS. He was quite vocal about what he thinks ails Android and iOS both.
According to him the Android platform is “wild” and “uncontrolled” – thanks to the lack of effective policing by Google on the kind of applications that make it to the Google Play Store. This according to him makes Android users susceptible to malware. Ballmer’s assertion does have some truth as there have been many recent security concerns regarding susceptibility of Android devices to malware. Also, the fact that it is now the worlds most widely used smartphone platform makes it that much more attractive for hackers and unscrupulous elements.
As for Apple’s iOS, Steve was unhappy to see the kind of control that Apple exerts over developers and for applications wishing to be on the App Store. He also termed iOS devices expensive – and that’s quite true considering the fact that the iPhone and almost all of the other iDevices are prohibitively expensive in many countries across the globe where they are not subsidized.
All this brings us to Windows Phone 8 – which according to him is the most viable option for consumers here. With handsets like the Lumia 920 and the HTC 8X being just made available, it would be interesting to see if people would really flock towards Windows Phone 8 in large numbers.