Motorola to make Windows Media phones, keep separate iTunes phone line

“Motorola said on Monday it had signed a deal to use Windows Media technology from Microsoft in a new range of music phones that would sell alongside its iTunes phone developed with Apple,” Lucas van Grinsven reports for Reuters. “Motorola Inc., the world’s second biggest mobile phone maker behind Nokia, will launch between one and three Windows Media phones in the second half of 2006, said Chris White, the company’s senior director of global product marketing for music handsets.”

van Grinsven reports, “Motorola, which launched its first iTunes phones last year, will keep Windows Media phones as separate products, he said. ‘The iTunes phones will remain a separate line of products,’ White said at 3GSM, the world’s biggest mobile phone trade fair.”

More in the full article here.
Obviously, Motorola must feel that their phones’ user interfaces are still not yet incomprehensible enough and have wisely decided to turn to Microsoft to help them achieve their goal.

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  1. I have no real need for a mobile phone or desire for one either, however I was considering getting one for absolute emergencies in my car. Accordingly I was also looking into making sure that whatever I got could be synched to OS X, however having looked into them I have come to the conclusion that they’re all crap. My father and brother both have nokias and the buttons/controls are tiny and badly set out and the menus are just over-crowded and complicated. Do the people who work at these companies not use phones themselves? You would have thought they would want to make well designed products.

    Of course this has nothing to do with Windows Media per se but still.

  2. probably got inside knowledge of apple developing there own phone, and are trying to open the market as much as possible before that time.

    cant wait for the apple cell phone. awwww yeaaaaaaaaaaa!!!!!

  3. ie no ones going to buy a motorola to gain iTunes functionality if and when apple release a cell phone.

    sounds like they have knowledge of apple doing this, or are afraid of them doing it.

  4. Agree with you Carlo. In the meantime, a Windows Media phone won’t have the ridiculous restriction of 100 songs. They’d have a serious threat to the iPod franchise If they could get their software act together.

    Good thing for Apple they don’t.

  5. “Obviously, Motorola must feel that their phones’ user interfaces are still not yet incomprehensible enough and have wisely decided to turn to Microsoft to help them achieve their goal.”

    Nice take!

    MS’s innovation department has engineered new earbuds that each contain 137 controls for the phone and MP3 player. Each phone comes with two surgically sharp instruments resembling knitting needles that the user jabs into each ear alternately to program and control the phone. Initiating a call to 911 for example, requires 247 separate “jabs” into the earbuds. The phone also comes with lobe guards, cotton swabs and alcohol wipes based on feedback from beta testers.

  6. I use a motorola phone (V180), I don’t think they are bad. Many work with OS X w/o extra software using iSync to synchronize with the OS X address book. The SLVR and the RAZR are both listed as compatible with this feature.

    Overall the menus and features on the cheap moto make more sense than a more expensive samsung I had recently. Itunes and the new designs just add to what’s already a decent option for mac users.

    “Does anyone have a Motorola phone? Are they really so bad? I actually kindof like the SLVR and am thinking about getting it”

  7. The problem with Motorola phones are that even the ones compatible with iSync still have horrible user interfaces. The address book is a mess because it lists contacts separately based on their contact number instead of grouped together by name. For example, if a contact has 3 different contact numbers (home, work, cell) it will list them 3 separate times in the address book instead of just once.

  8. imax wrote:

    “Can someone on a Windows Media Phone talk to someone on an Apple iTunes Phone?”

    He-he. Nice one.

    They’ll probably have to work out the EFI issues, first.

  9. Norman said: “They’d have a serious threat to the iPod franchise If they could get their software act together.”

    Norman, you get the prize for the biggest IF of the year, and the year has just started. ” width=”19″ height=”19″ alt=”smile” style=”border:0;” />

  10. RC- agree with you the set up is awkward (ex. sparate listing for each number). took some time to set it up so that my phone, powerbook, and online .mac addressbook synchronized to my liking. It works but it aint pretty.

    Which I guess is part of the appeal of apple making its own phone – no doubt it would be a more elegant solution in terms of the hardware and more intuitive software. I’d buy it if they made it.

  11. I just got a Motorola E815 so that I could sync with iTunes via Bluetooth.

    The phone’s user interface is not terrible by any means, though it’s certainly not superb either. It’s fairly straightforward once you learn how to do basic things (for some obscure options like how multiple phone numbers for 1 person appear in your address book, it’s best to consult the manual).

    It’s a definite improvement over my old LG VX10, which had three separate methods of accessing the address book (one to edit, one to lookup people to call, and a very terrible one to pick contacts for SMS that required knowing the contact ID number)

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