Indicative sales numbers from a credible source are difficult to come by, especially on handset sales. But we got twice lucky.
India sales numbers in calendar 2006:
- Number of Windows Mobile smartphones = 50,000
- Number of Blackberry devices = 29,000
This Deccan Hearld article gives the impression that Microsoft wants to take Blackberry head-on and is positioning itself as the leader in that segment.
The article says that “Windows Mobile is the number one player in the smartphone category in India, according to IDC”. Leader or not depends on how you define the smartphone category. Nokia is the undisputed leader in India. I’m sure it is the leader in the smartphone category as well. Just to put things in perspective: Nokia sells 4 lakh phones in a day. The “smartphone” definition taken maybe those phones which are PDA-like in their form-factor with a touch-screen. These kind of phones are not for mass-consumption as they usually require a stylus or two-hand operation. Touch-screen/Stylus operated phone with PDA-like large form-factor and QWERTY keypads are popular only in the enterprise segment.
Microsoft has an advantage over Blackberry due to a large installed base of its Exchange server in enterprises, which can be mobile enabled for Push Mail with just a software update. Which is not the case with Blackberry, were a company has to purchase additional Blackberry server also.
“Since Microsoft provides the exchange server for the push email facility on Windows Mobile, the hansets manufacturers are not required to incur cost on this. This lowers the overall cost of ownership for the handsets