There’s been concern for years now that Microsoft, for all its historical success, is having trouble staying competitive in the modern world of smartphone technology. We’re now starting to see confirmation of that. As Tech Times reported this week, Microsoft is taking steps to disable Windows Phone 7.5 and 8.0 devices, including discontinuing push notifications on those operating systems.
This news is part of a distinct long-term trend of Microsoft losing ground in the battle for smartphone supremacy against the real industry titans, Android and iOS. It would appear that Microsoft’s move to stop supporting Windows Phone is a sign of surrender, and users may soon have no choice but to adopt either iPhones or Android devices.
“Windows Phone 7.5 and Windows Phone 8.0 have reached the end of their support dates, and thus services for these versions of Windows will be discontinued over time,” Microsoft said in an official announcement.
For now, the Windows smartphone is only losing certain aspects of its functionality. Notifications will go away, but handset can still be used as intended for calls, texts, web browsing and some mobile games. Other features, such as the “Find My Phone” feature for locating lost or stolen devices, will be gone.
For Microsoft loyalists, the small glimmer of good news is that smartphones with versions 8.1 and 10 of the Windows operating system will continue to function for now. Those who have upgraded their phones since 2014 will likely be able to continue using their devices without any major problems.
As for Microsoft, it’s unclear whether the company will simply fade away, or try to make another foray into the mobile phone industry. One possibility is that Microsoft will put more emphasis on its Surface line of electronic devices—and rumor has it they may even develop a Surface-based mobile phone. For now, that remains to be seen.
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