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Windows Phone manager quits, still hopeful

updated 01:45 pm EDT, Mon August 8, 2011

Windows Phone GM Charlie Kindel quits

Microsoft's mobile ambitions took a hit Monday as its Windows Phone group's General Manager revealed he was leaving the company. The 21-year veteran will quit as of September 2 to found a startup focused on a mix of ads, the cloud, mobile, and athletics. He told GeekWire that he had already moved his Windows Phone tasks off to mobile general manager Matt Bencke.

The shift came after he had already been reevaluating where he would go next and got an opportunity to help manage the startup soon after. He didn't say what it would involve as it was still in "stealth" mode while getting ready for its unveiling, but he hinted that any mobile apps would be for WP7 first before tackling Android and iOS.

Kindel stressed that the departure was amicable and that he was very confident the Windows Phone team would do well. In a goodbye e-mail, he thought that Windows Phone was a source of pride for the company, although he hinted he would no longer be tied to the Windows ecosystem.

"To the Windows Phone team: I may stop using some Microsoft products now that I'm out of here," he said. "But not Windows Phone. The BEST product Microsoft has ever built. Do not let up!"

Microsoft's short-term future for WP7 will largely be unaffected by Kindel's exit with Mango finished and the release waiting mostly on devices. The soon to be former executive is confident the group is in "fantastic hands" but will still see it face a change in leadership at a vital point.

Although WP7's share has been stabilizing, it has still been losing ground year-over-year as sales haven't been enough to offset those defecting from Windows Mobile to Android or the iPhone. Most of the blame has been put on the from-scratch remake missing a few key features as well as poor exposure in stores, where staff often actively steer customers away from Windows Phones similar to how electronics shops once steered customers away from Macs.




by MacNN Staff

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Comments

  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +3

    The "BEST"

    ... Windows Phone. The BEST product Microsoft has ever built....

    Very likely. Too bad it isn't selling.

  1. ferdchet

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    Your product for WP7 first?

    Really? Let us know how your investors feel about that, Charlie. You going after Blackberry too? At least they still have some decent share.

  1. SockRolid

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    WP7 is a 1.0 release

    Most of the blame has been put on the from-scratch remake missing a few key features ...

    See what happens when you sit on your butts and milk your installed base? Instead of gradually evolving WinMob and gradually migrating your user base to its new features, Microsoft just killed off WinMob. Too hard to suddenly add all those iPhone features to the existing code base because Microsoft just didn't keep up over the years.

    No WinMob upgrade path to WP7. No WP7 backward compatibility with WinMob. It's like Microsoft *wanted* to get rid of all those WinMob users. Like an asteroid hit the Microsoft Planet and killed off all the dinosaurs overnight.

    Enjoy your mobile Ice Age, Microsoft. Stay cool.

  1. Paul Huang

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +4

    How many products has MSFT ever built?

    Time to jump the sinking ship before it goes to the bottom of the ocean.

  1. Foe Hammer

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +13

    Great Name

    Great name for a Microsoft employee: Kindel.

    Maybe Microsoft will hire Ivan Padd and Anne Durhoid in the near future.

  1. bleee

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +3

    Elop said it best...

    "The man was standing upon a "burning platform," and he needed to make a choice."

    Looks like this guy decided to jump :-P

  1. leamanc

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +3

    Nice outfit

    With that outfit, this guy could only work at Microsoft. Hopefully he's got something else in his closet.

  1. leamanc

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +3

    Photo caption

    "Hi! I'm a d-bag! Wanna buy a phone?"

  1. dwishbone

    Joined: Dec 1969

    +1

    bet that stings

    "...as well as poor exposure in stores, where staff often actively steer customers away from Windows Phones similar to how electronics shops once steered customers away from Macs." bet that stings doesn't it Microsoft.

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