Microsoft seems to have dropped out of the smartphone race, but it still has a chance to get reenergised and even pull ahead of the pack.

When looking at all the competitors for smartphone supremacy, you might say the Windows Mobile is last place in the rankings (although a recent report places it at third place).

Some would even contend that Microsoft would have been better off never entering this race if it weren't going to put up a good fight.

That may shock the 7.2 million users of the Microsoft smartphone OS, especially those in the enterprise who don't see the iPhone as a serious contender at all (due in part to Apple's history of ignoring the needs of the enterprise in favour of the individual user).

Even I, a noted Microsoft loyalist of the highest order, finally chose my first smartphone - and it didn't run Windows Mobile.
The one that excited me, that made me finally make the move? An Android device: Motorola's Droid, known as the Milestone in the UK.

It gave me Exchange connectivity, all the collaboration features I needed (email, internet, news feeds, weather), and thousands of cool apps (mostly free) to download from the Android Market.

But, hey, don't start cursing my name just yet - I wasn't the first person in my position to make the move!

Mark Minasi, a globally famous tech speaker and technical author of over 25 books, held an iPhone high in the air at a Windows conference last year and heaped it with accolades.

He said in WindowsITPro that he had "grown tired of begging Windows Mobile to do the stuff" that he paid for.

Most of my friends use BlackBerrys or iPhones. I thought I was at least being somewhat rebellious and going against the tide to go with the Droid.

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NEXT PAGE: Glimmers of hope for Windows Mobile 6.5

  1. We look at whether Microsoft can re-enter the smartphone race
  2. Glimmers of hope for Windows Mobile 6.5
  3. Bad news/good news for Windows Mobile