SOFTWARE COLOSSUS Microsoft's dominance of the IT industry will disappear within five years, as it loses its grip on a facet of the industry where smartphone devices will be king.
This is according to Sven Gossel, speaking at the Infosecurity conference in London and whose company, Charismatics, was responsible for the first identity management application on the IPhone.
Microsoft is just not quick enough, compared to the companies that are pushing swiftly into the smartphone market with Android, and previously Apple with the IPhone.
He said, "At Mobile World Congress in 2009, more than a year ago, Microsoft said that it was going to have the app store in June 2009. Well, it didn't."
"Microsoft now with this Windows Phone Series 7 won't be ready before early 2011. So time is everything in this market. The fact that it delays this will have more impact than it coming up with a new device."
"The reason is simple. If Microsoft is going to win this game, it has to come out with something uniquely different, with a device that it introduces."
He mocked the Vole's text messaging device Kin that Microsoft announced a week ago, calling it a "device for kids", saying there's not enough money to be made from the devices.
Gossel added, "The critical issue is whether it is really able to stretch itself on all these different verticals to be successful. Its current success is based on another strategy, being directly focusing on the corporate market - a different story."
Mobile operating systems are now more important than actual handset devices. In 2007 Apple and RIM had very little market share, but in the space of two years they have both penetrated the market.
Even Nokia has said that smartphones will replace mobile phones, and Gossel agreed, saying that it will happen within five years.
According to Gartner, Microsoft had only an eight per cent market share of smartphones in 2009, and only due to HTC and T-Mobile in Germany where RIM wasn't successful. HTC has now virtually dropped Windows Mobile in favour of Android.
The big problem for Microsoft now is that the emerging markets are going for smartphones rather than laptops and PCs, which the beast of Redmond has such a hold on, as those are generally cheaper.
Gossel said, "Smartphones will dominate the market and take it from Microsoft. That is where the critical point is." µ