Maybe both? Anyway, Microsoft unveiled their new phones last week. The Kin One and the Kin Two. I have no idea what they were thinking about with the name, but I am not their target market. Realizing the smart phone market is over-populated (though if Palm goes down, there will be one fewer), Microsoft decided to introduce a highly-focused smart phone.
This is Microsoft’s first foray into phones themselves. Usually they just provide mobile software to phone makers, but they have been losing share with this strategy (13.1% last year, putting them in third place), so they are taking matters into their own hands. In this case they are involved with both the hardware and the software.
If you are a regular reader you know we are big on companies that focus. We think focus is good and we have to commend Microsoft for focusing with this product. It is focused specifically on people whose primary use of their smart phone is to connect via social networks. It has a highly simplified (focused) interface for that usage and does not permit connection to download “apps.” They feel they have built in the apps their users will want.
Their target market is a younger crowd that is focused on social networking. Will it be a hit with them? I have no idea, and time will tell. Though, as with many Microsoft products it may take until version 3 for it to be as good as it needs to be.