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article imageMicrosoft makes it official: Windows 10 Mobile is as good as dead

By James Walker     Oct 9, 2017 in Technology
Microsoft has confirmed Windows 10 Mobile will not be getting any new features going forward. The company said the lack of apps on the platform has caused its demise. The operating system will still be supported with bug fixes and security updates.
Microsoft's Joe Belfiore, head of the Windows experience team, made the comments in a series of tweets yesterday. The messages come a few days after Microsoft announced it's bringing Microsoft Edge to iOS and Android devices, a decision that led many Windows 10 Mobile users to fear the worst.
Belfiore confirmed the current state of the platform is what most followers have suspected for months. Windows 10 Mobile is still supported and isn't "dead" as such. To most consumers, it is as good as gone though, with no new features or devices on the horizon. The operating system's on life support with Microsoft focused on supporting enterprise users and fans who've invested in existing devices.
Belfiore himself started using an Android device several months ago. Once the face of Windows Phone development, he said he switched for the "app and hardware diversity," advising consumer Windows 10 Mobile users to choose the platform that works best for them. Microsoft no longer minds if people jump ship for iOS or Android, with Belfiore noting that a "huge, huge majority" of Microsoft customers already use devices from multiple ecosystems.
Belfiore also addressed the root cause of Windows 10 Mobile's stagnation. Almost for as long as it's existed, Microsoft's mobile platform has suffered from an "app gap" that's made it unappealing to consumers. The resulting small userbase has made investment in app creation unattractive to developers, perpetuating a bottomless cycle of downward decline.
Microsoft's multiple platform reboots have done little to solve the problem. With consumers and developers alike still unwilling to give Windows Mobile a chance, Microsoft itself has been forced to concede defeat and cease its own investment in the platform. Belfiore noted that the company worked "very hard" to try and get app developers onboard, going so far as to offer to write apps for hesitant companies. Evidently, none of the measures made an impact.
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It's now been almost two years since Windows 10 Mobile launched and Microsoft last unveiled a new first-party device. Going forward, the company will be concentrating its mobile development efforts on iOS and Android.
With no new hardware or features incoming, Windows 10 Mobile will lie dormant alongside, used by a handful of people in primarily enterprise environments. It remains to be seen whether the platform will ever be revived again, although a trickle of leaks in recent months have suggested some mobile development's still ongoing in Microsoft's labs.
More about Microsoft, windows 10, windows 10 mobile, Smartphones, Mobile
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