The System Snicker of the Day: Nokia Cheats on Microsoft
As a hardware enthusiast, news can have many effects on me. I can get excited, become sad, laugh out loud and other times mildly snicker. This time I mildly snickered as I read that Nokia was releasing new Android phones. It wasn’t too long ago that they decided to go all in with Microsoft and release only Windows Phones, but the excitement of the new relationship has all but worn off, and Nokia found a new partner in Android. [Editor’s Note: For now at least. Android Nokia phones will likely be a short lived venture once Microsoft actually takes the reigns of Nokia later this year.] Today the Mobile World Congress 2014 began and this announcement is just one of many that has the mobile market ecstatic, while leaving system builders in a slight lull.
Don’t get me wrong, phones can be exciting, but this isn’t the huge announcement I’ve been waiting for. While I really could stand to upgrade my old Samsung Galaxy S (yes, the original one), the opportunity I saw in this announcement was a chance to talk about what I would like to see from Windows in the future. Windows 8, while not quite the disaster that was Vista, is still a major disappointment. Microsoft tried to make one OS that could span the bridges from phones, to laptops, to professional environments, and what they ended with was an overall failure in everything except maybe tablets. So what should Microsoft do next? Well, this is just one man’s opinion, but no matter how inconceivable, here is what I would like Windows to become.
I use Windows at work for mostly work. I use it at home for gaming and my home theater system, and I top my technology off with an Android phone. At work, I would love to see Windows work well. By this I mean that most of my issues as a systems admin are revolved on fixing Windows problems. I have a constant flurry of compatibility issues, updates that have to be rolled back, and hot fixes to limp my network security along. I would like a separate version of Windows designed for ultimate IE compatibility with work websites that use lots of Java, simple desktop designs that use minimal resources, easier control of log on accounts and more built in security and encryption that can be easily disabled when it’s not needed. What many companies want in an OS is stability while not needing to change too often. This is so IT professionals can get back to working on all the other systems that don’t work as well or need to be built in their network environment.
At home, I want Windows to be totally different than my work Windows. I don’t mean that I have to learn two OSs, but I do mean that my home environment should be a better reflection of me as a person. I enjoyed Windows 8 for the different look, but I’m still limited to choosing only what 8 allows. Why not add more options? Windows could have tiles, or circles, or ribbons. I even thought it would be cool to have bubble icons that float around on your desktop. Having more options to customize would be great, while still having the option to have a simple old school desktop and start menu for people who like simplicity. Also, don’t make basic system options so hard to find! You know how long it took me to make a desktop icon of My Computer because I couldn’t just right click anymore in Windows 8? And while they were at it, optimizing gaming performance would be a huge plus in my book as well!
After having two OSs designed specifically for work and entertainment, then Microsoft could design a phone that integrates flawlessly with both. When my computer is on, my phone is automatically synced with my personal files at home, not just on Skydrive. Include a code that I can send remotely to turn my computer on and off. Make sure that phones linked to exchange accounts are automatically encrypted for confidential data. Most importantly, open up the app market to make it as easy as possible for developers to get apps on the Windows Phone. I know that was the main deal killer when I was thinking of upgrading to one of the Nokia Windows phones last year. By forsaking the idea that one OS fits all and designing each one to the strengths of the platform it’s on, I think Microsoft would turn around the slump they’ve been in since Windows 8.
So there you have it. I have officially turned phone news into rantings about computers, but that’s why I proudly belong to an overclocking website! Seeing Nokia move to the Android platform is a clear sign that Windows isn’t working as well as they hoped it would. If Microsoft wants to get back on top, there is no doubt that Windows 9 (or whatever they end up calling it) needs to make some huge improvements in order to garner the excitement of the consumers to spend their hard earned dollars. I can only hope that Nokia’s decisions aren’t too little too late, because Samsung and Apple aren’t taking any prisoners.