Uncommon Wisdom

Jul 1 2010   11:58AM GMT

RIP for Microsoft Kin; cloud over cloud-to-phone concept

Tom Nolle Tom Nolle Profile: Tom Nolle

Just days after Verizon announced a price reduction on the Kin, Microsoft pulled the plug on the whole concept. We’re not surprised but we’re disappointed.

The concept behind the Kin was, in our view, a potentially strong one. A device and the cloud in partnership. It should have been a no-lose situation, but insipid marketing killed any chance of it catching on. Not only that, it’s made it a lot harder for a successor concept to catch on, unless cloud-to-phone relationships evolve out of current smartphone successes and are kind of kept in the background.

This is going to make it much harder for service providers, and it will also present challenges to Alcatel-Lucent, who hopes that its Open API service will empower operators and developers to create an ecosystem not unlike what Microsoft envisioned with Kin. Most of all, it will make things tough for Microsoft, who will now have to restore mobile operators’ confidence in its voice plans.

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