Poll Results

Our poll results show Nokia still riding high

Windows Phone Central conducted a poll over the weekend about which “hero” Windows Phone 8 device readers were yearning to make their own. And although carrier offerings will ultimately affect user choice, word on the street is that a lot of these flagship phones will be widely available on launch in early November.

With this poll, we had the largest turnout of respondents, resulting in some solid data. The question of which is the most desired Windows Phone 8 device is quite stark and will make for some interesting discussion on Windows Phone 8, OEMs and where the market is headed.

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On Friday, we asked our readers what Windows Phone 8 device they were leaning towards for their next purchase. And although HTC has yet to unveil their new phones, it appears that Nokia has by far demonstrated their dominance amongst our readership.

The poll was simple: Choose one of four new Windows Phone 8 devices, including the Nokia Lumia 820, Lumia 920, Samsung ATIV S or the HTC Accord (a device all but officially confirmed at this point for release).

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One of the big news items this week was the announcement that Microsoft has updated their corporate logo for the first time in 25 years. While logo designs are not the most exciting topic we can think of, this change in appearance is also a continuing sign of a shift for the company, including a reimaging of the Microsoft brand.

The new logo (which looks to have ties to the past) fits in with Microsoft’s new Metro/Modern UI that is being rolled out across Windows 8, Windows Phone, Xbox 360, Outllook.com and even SkyDrive. The look is clean, minimalist and the opposite of gaudy. In fact, some have complained that the new logo may be too plain. That’s an odd criticism, especially since one of the top technology companies today, Apple, hardly has the most exciting logo either—yet no one complains.

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We've had front facing cameras on the platform since the unveiling of the HTC Radar and TITAN, but only a handful of Windows Phones actually sport the famous secondary shooter. The front facing camera enables consumers to take self-portrait shots, video conference with contacts, and more. It's pretty useful, should you require it.

Many Lumia 800 owners complained about a number of issues with the Windows Phone when it was released, and one of the more popular complaints was the lack of a front facing camera. So to see the above chart illustrating the results of a Windows Phone Central poll, it's interesting to see who actually makes use of the feature. 

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Certainly the most controversial issue for Microsoft and Windows Phone users right now is the 7.8 update which will bring the new Start screen to current devices. This update is in lieu of getting Windows Phone 8 proper which is reliant on advanced hardware for most of its new features.

Some in the tech media are portraying this as a fiasco though the majority see the light at the end of the tunnel, recognizing that Microsoft had to switch the kernel from CE to NT if it wanted the platform to move forward. Combined with the difficulty in providing direct-upgrades to Windows Phone 8 (it's not a simple "update" but rather requires wiping the device, backing update data and re-writing aspects for current hardware) we can sympathize with Microsoft in not spending invaluable time and resources on making WP8 backwards compatible. 

We put the question to you though to get your feedback. On the original article, you folks left an astounding 500+ comments. On the poll, a massive 6,500+ of you left a response. While the data may not be perfect we do get a rough idea of how you are feeling.

Certainly we can say the results are mixed but a majority of you (54%) are okay with Microsoft choosing this path for current Windows Phone users. The clear "no" category had 19.61%  thinking Microsoft could and should do more while another 20% were on the fence, perhaps waiting to see how it actually looks and feel. A tiny percentage (6%) claimed they are finished with Microsoft and are leaving the platform.

For those 20% who are unsure they may want to see exactly what the update entails. Microsoft has strongly hinted that as of now, it is just the new Start screen. The reason for that is many of the additional new features, like Wallet or voice, requires access to the core of the OS since they use new APIs not available in Windows Phone 7. In other words, if you code an app that uses the WP8 SDK with new WP8 APIs for WinRT/NT it is not clear how that can be back-ported to a CE device.

Of course we have to remember that what Microsoft showed this week technically was not for consumers. The Windows Phone team team will be having more events this summer where they show off new, not-previously mentioned features including some UI changes. In other words, there may yet still be more to Windows Phone 7.8 but Microsoft is waiting to reveal those in tandem with the consumer preview of Apollo.

In fact, Nokia US on Twitter yesterday noted that besides the new Start screen "Other elements aren't being disclosed at this time" which leads us to believe there may be yet more to come for Windows Phone 7.8.

Looks like we'll just have to wait and see but so far, Microsoft may have done enough to ameliorate the issue with users.

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Nearly 60% of those switching to Windows Phone due to the Nokia Lumia 900 or HTC Titan II were former iOS and Android owners. Apple brand-loyalty? We think not.

We ran a poll the other day asking users if they switched to Windows Phone due to the Lumia 900 or Titan II, what OS were they coming from. And although the poll is still technically open, with 3,462 votes tallied so far we can discern a distinct pattern forming from the results.

The majority of users, nearly 60%, are coming from a combo of former Android and iPhone owners with it neatly divided at a close 30% each. Blackberry users are evidently still holding on with just 10% and a nice healthy 14% of adopters were coming from non-smartphones.

While our pals at Crackberry spun it as hope for Blackberry 10 users, we imagine a lot of folks jumped that ship last quarter to either the iPhone or Android, leaving the diehards (or still contract-bound) behind. Personally, we think RIM is DOA and look forward to a Microsoft acquisition at a rock bottom price (insert maniacal laughter).

The Android/iPhone results are interesting only because we're seeing what looks to be equal amount of folks taking up Windows Phone, leaving in the dust the notion that Apple has stronger brand loyalty than any other company.

One could also interpret the results as the Lumia 900 piquing interest from all segments of the smartphone market, represented in a roughly proportional manner. That's good news for Windows Phone as an OS and better news for Nokia who seem more than capable of garnering media attention on a wide scale. That is something the likes of Samsung and HTC have not been able to do in part because of their divided interest between Android and Windows Phone.

With the Lumia 900 seemingly selling very well (and yes, it's still number #1 and #3 on Amazon Wireless) the question now is will it maintain that momentum over the coming weeks?

We think with the glossy-white 900 set for this Sunday, April 22nd it will certainly create even more interest and those rumors of a magenta version for Mother's Day could also do wonders for the brand. We'll revisit this issue next month.

Update: To clarify, we purposefully left off previous Windows Phone users. The reason is because we were interested in only those who switched their OS due to the allure of the Lumia 900 (or Titan II). While we're sure a chunk of you were Windows Phone/Windows Mobile users, we wanted to look at the ratio of those who converted.

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