Just thinking about the integration taking place across devices these days and it’s amazing how much more software goes into the OS these days and what this means for devs. I mean, we used to get a phone with a calendar, email, SMS, phone, calculator and a browser and add a few games and we were more than set. Time went on and Windows Mobile and Blackberry got killed for essentially not breaking that mold. And look at where we are now.

I’ll stick with Windows Phone for a second because that’s what I know but Microsoft essentially ended Shazam, removed the need to load any ‘local’ search apps, killed off any need to bring Dragon Speak Easy to the phone, no need for Facebook or Live Chat, or Dropbox…well you get the idea. See lots of developers made massively impressive apps and we used to crave these on our phones and now they’re integrated. And the same could be said of Android and to a lesser degree iPhone (which still embraces more of an ‘app’ model than Android or Windows Phones). It’s a pretty fundamental shift in the way we view our devices too. Now you walk out of the store and the phone does everything. Yeah you still need some games and utilities and there are always some apps that compliment what your phone can already do. But think of all of the apps that you don’t need now on a Windows Phone. I mean, Shazam was a legit company and I presume their downloads on Windows Phones are about to plummet since the built in functions will almost certainly dry up their market. And to developers that make Twitter, Facebook or Skype apps they already know they’re on borrowed time. This forces developers to release even better products because if they merely mimic a function the phone already does they simply won’t sell. But you can take an app like Seesmic and it’s still viable – today at least. Or look at TweetDeck and how they pulled in $40m from Twitter for their desktop client.

It’s an interesting transitional period we’re in now as the giant software makers are getting back to their roots of…well developing software. And at the same time the rest of the developer community has to bring their A-game but if they do, there are huge benefits to reap. I prefer this model over the ‘app for that’ model every time and can’t wait to see what gets integrated next and what must have app comes out next.

10 COMMENTS

  1. Paul thurrot said the same thing at one of his podcast…Windows weekly!!! Its interesting topic!!! I think MSFT thought about this way before, but can’t really do anything about it because of the stupid anti trust case…. Its very obvious what MSFT is trying to do here, just have the phone do everything without downloading apps, well of course some apps will have to be downloaded like for example the BIBLE app or NBA etc…..the shazam is hiding already in the game HUB…. LOL.. I JUST HOPE MSFT WILL BE CAREFUL THIS TIME…
    Imagine what android os and IOS gonna look like after mango??? Right..all I know is this is a very exciting times for MSFT and wp7.. I know MANGO WILL BE SWEET…. WASSUP DOUG WHERE YOU AT???

  2. This has been going on forwever. In the late 70s I remember being at an IBM conference where they destroyed a “partner” by incorporating a (better) release of their sole product in the operating system. The gorilla can always roll over and crush you.

  3. I’ve got to comment on Shazam. I know Microsoft integrated Bing Music into WP7, and I think that’s great. But the thing that killed Shazam on WP7 was the ridiculous price they asked for the new Shazam. In fact, they removed it after the outcry. Not only that, they limited the number of tags to 5 a month in the free version now. All you have to do is find the app in the market place and read the reviews. It used to be very highly rated before they pulled this sleazy business tactic, and charged an insane amount, and then released a gimpy free version.

    Now, I don’t know if the creators of Shazam did this in response to Bing Music. But they essentially killed the app on WP7 by their scummy dealings.

  4. Anyone who thinks that MSFT has eliminated the need for FB on the phone clearly doesn’t use it that much. Even the FB app on WP7 is barely passable for most users. I know “but you can use the full site on your phone” is what people who haven’t tried doing that on the phone always say. MSFT has done some great things with the mobile platform, but lets not get carried away.

  5. The facebook app on wp7sucks…. They need to fix it.. It kills the wp7 experience!!!! Zooming pics on the app itself is terrible…

  6. ok I started this but it’s actually not what I meant. When I wrote “no need for Facebook or Live Chat” I really meant “no need for Facebook CHAT or Live MESSENGER”. Oh well…rant on peeps ;)

  7. Microsoft (and Google) are doing the same thing to their mobile OSes that Microsoft did to windows in the 90s. Except instead of a browser, media player, and email client; this time it’s everything from office productivity to music fingerprinting. That’s bad for developers, but it is good for consumers. It means the same OS has more value for the money, which means you don’t have to buy 100 apps at 99 cents each to get what most people now consider basic functionality. And the integrated apps work together better, and are of higher quality. For example, despite the lack of features, it is clear that the Facebook integration in Windows Phone is much better than the “first-party” app.

    Regardless, in time consumers will expect this of their mobile phones, and the app-centric model will die a slow, but imminent death.

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