Own it! What “failures” Microsoft needs to do a take 2 on and why.

A month or 2 Ago I talked to a Microsoft employee regarding the Kin Phones features. Kin Spot, Kin Loop and Kin Studio. His words were Microsoft is gun shy on the Kin. To date the only things we’ve heard regarding the kin is that the loop is going to make it with mango.

There’s some speculation as to studios future There’s no word on the kin spot. I have a philosophy in life. There are no failures. Only temporary set backs and lessons to learn from. Apple didn’t run away from the Apple t.v (may not be the best example) and there’s a lot that Microsoft could learn from the kin, the Zune device and Encarta

Kin: The hardware wasn’t the best. It was a high end feature phone. Not a smart phone. Verizon killed the beast with a data plan meant for smart phones. But kin spot, studio & loop were amazing. So far the loop is crossing over. But don’t stop there. The spot was a great communications tool. It made the phone truly unique. The windows phone is a great social network phone. Its got the best Facebook experience possible baked into it without having a tacked on app. The twitter integration is going to be great.

Put the icing on the cake. Bring back the spot. Kin studio looked beautiful. Supposedly this is coming back. Please make this happen. Call it MyPhone.Studio.com (windowsphone.live.com doesn’t slide of the tongue). Keep the UI the same as it was in kin studio. Integrate the windowsphone.live.com office & find my phone features.

Zune HD: Popular doesn’t mean better. I’ve have underwear that has survived longer than any iPod I’ve ever owned. By day I’m a dog walker & avid cyclist in Manhattan. The Zune is and has always been a tank. Every Zune I’ve ever owned has retired or left my possession intact.

The iPods I’ve owned have bit the dust. I stopped buying them in 2008. I’ve been gifted them and they’ve all died terrible deaths. I have yet to own a Zune that I can kill. Its earned my respect in a klingon kind of way. But if reports are true. Microsoft is killing the Zune as a device. Don’t do this.

Microsoft has partnered with Nokia. Have them make a Zune HD2. A windows phone with out the phone. A 4 in super amoled screen. Bluetooth, NFC, dlna, a VoIP device. Dual cameras. Pit it against the iPod touch & the PSP. Xbox gamers like me waited years for a portable Xbox to game with on the go.

Yes there’s windows phone now. But kids don’t usually get smartphones. People who don’t want a data plan will love it. It will set the standard of what windows phones should run like. Better known as “if your phone isn’t running right, its not us. Its the carrier or the oem”. The iOS platform has a large presence & equally large app store (I now owe Apple $100 for the use of the term app store) not just because of 1 device. But because you can get it what ever flavor (of vanilla) you prefer. From over sized iPhone to iPhone that also can’t make calls but isn’t saddled with a data plan.

Put Spot technology in it so it has some data coming to it when not on WiFi. The Zune hd is better than the iPod touch in many ways. I prefer it to the windows phone as a media player as it has more features like Zune social. Own this and it will pay you (Microsoft) back in spades.

Encarta: I grew up with this. It was there through Jr. High & High school. It was extensive. It killed Britannica. All of mankind’s, earths and to the best of our abilities, the universes history available offline with the click of a button. It was an amazing wealth of knowledge on a disc. Then came Wikipedia. Or as I like to call it; that doesn’t sound right.

Sometimes, its hard to fight free. Encarta bit the dust along side of Microsoft money. Its now a shadow of its former self. An online dictionary & thesaurus. (Cue the million dollar man theme). We cam rebuild it. Better, faster and stronger than ever. Encarta as a free windows, native windows app that’s an information aggregator. With the power of bing behind it this could be better than Wikipedia. Type is a subject and what it does is it pulls down information from all over the web.

For example: Type in George Washington and not only get Wikipedia information, get news articles, get verified information from college sources and any and all relevant social media information all laid out nicely in a Zune desktop like app. Cross reference and even update databases like Wikipedia.

The original Encarta was killed of because the web supposedly killed it. But if mobile proves anything its that apps can be better than the web. They just have to be compelling. Encarta as a free app that can be a extra compelling reason to get windows. Especially for students if its paired with Microsoft works for writing papers (call it homework and have preset layouts).

Never run away from failure. Because then it becomes a wasted opportunity to learn from and a missed opportunity to become stronger.


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