As early as Windows 7, Microsoft has dabbled with the possibility of a mobile version of their operating system seeing wide use, with partnerships to manufacture dedicated smartphones for it. The result was Windows Phone, which was introduced in 2010 and ended in July of 2017 with version 8.1 (though its last update was in 2015). Even its successor, Windows 10 Mobile, eventually did not receive much upkeep itself, simply existing while Microsoft realized that they were too weak to become the third contender to the existing iOS-Android duel. The computing giant has begun dialing down its mobile operations but for a time they have kept from saying that the Windows Phone concept was officially dead; at least until now.

Closing time

This official pronouncement of doom upon Microsoft’s venture into mobile phones and operating systems was given by their Corporate Vice President of Operating Systems Group, Joe Belfiore. Belfiore wrote on Twitter that no more new things will be arriving for Windows 10 Mobile, other than upgraded security patches or bug fixes. That pretty much means that, like Windows Phone 8.1 before, the last vestige of mobile Microsoft will be left to wither on the vine.

Another reason that Belfiore cited for the closing up shop of all Windows Phone platforms is the fact that no software companies and independent developers were ever interested in crafting apps for it.

From the viewpoint of these parties, a number of actual users from the first version of Windows 10 Mobile were but a drop in the ocean compared to the user bases of either Apple’s iOS or the open-source Android system. And despite all of Microsoft’s efforts in providing incentives for interested developers, the hoped-for investments never materialized. The 0.1% market share of the hapless MOS as of this year was a damning indicator that Windows Phone is done for.

Dead mobile OS walking

In hindsight, this is hardly a surprise. Already some of Microsoft’s OEM partners have been discontinuing the devices they have been developing to carry Windows 10 Mobile, like Hewlett-Packard and its premium – and wasted – Elite X3 smartphone. The NYPD even switched out their Windows Phone 8.1-using Nokia Lumias for iPhones just this August.

Even the company’s great founder Bill Gates is not shy about admitting that his phone is an Android. So it is painfully clear that the only fate for Windows Phone now is that of the once-dominant Blackberry phones.

Microsoft’s plans for the demise of Windows Phone are seen to mirror that of video game maker Sega after their retirement from console development post-Dreamcast. Now iOS and Android versions of the Microsoft Edge browser will soon debut, following earlier released apps like MS Office and Outlook.