Following the release of Windows 10, with the promise of cross-device compatibility as well as apps that work on any Windows device (Universal Apps), the Windows 10 Devices event turned very Apple, in that it showcased devices built specifically for that software. At the same time, however, Microsoft is endeavouring to divorce the device from the data, making things as transferrable and flexible as it can.
Satya Nadella has announced that Microsoft will be laying off 7,800 workers in a reshuffle, accompanied by a $7.6 billion write-off related to the acquisition of Nokia. This is despite Lumia sales that have been showing steady increases throughout 2014, although they do not come close to the likes of Samsung, Apple or even LG.
For many years a white-box OEM and network infrastructure player, Chinese smartphone maker Huawei is taking bigger steps towards own-brand smartphone sales in European and North American markets in the coming year. The company is rolling out the new premium-positioned Huawei P8 in concert with a dual-channel strategy (online and MNO-distributed) for Huawei itself and the Honor sub-brand.
As the quarterly financial results from technology companies roll in, we are presented with two similar but contrasting visions of the devices market. One is of an expanding market, of an underdog recovering its strength, while the other is of record-breaking sales and exceeded expectations in some places, while trying to ignore its decline in others.