After years of promise it really does look like mobile is the next big thing? But what mobile platform will prove to be the most popular? It seems to be a two horse race between iPhone and Android, with Windows Mobile lagging somewhere in the distance – or is it already a non-runner? In any case it’s been delayed until late 2010.
At work the concensus amongst the developers at Caplin seems to be that they like Android as a platform and there’s quite a bit of excitement about the Google Nexus One which will contain the Android 2.1 operating system.
Since I’ve been involved in most of the Microsoft product development here I’m interested to see if there is any chance of Windows Mobile doing anything. I’m excited about the inclusion of Silverlight in Windows Mobile 7, as I blogged about some time back, and have just read a small piece that indicates Microsoft are keen to take gaming mobile with XBox 360 integration.
A while back, just after we’d ported StreamLink.NET to the Silverlight runtime, I took an R&D day to try to port StreamLink.NET to Windows Mobile. I made good progress but left things in a non-compiling state. More recently I had another opportunity to take a day to try and finish the work off. The codebase had moved slightly so I had to do a little more work that I’d planned and now I’m left with a single compilation error based around the .NET Compact Framework not having the WaitHandle.WaitAny method. To resolve this I’m going to have to go native or we may have to consider purchasing the fantastic Smart Device Framework.
If Windows Mobile 7 supports Silverlight then maybe you could argue that my time spent porting StreamLink.NET to Windows Mobile has been wasted? Or, maybe you would argue that any time spent developing for the Windows Mobile platform is a waste of time? Personally, I like Windows Mobile as a platform, I have a Windows Mobile phone and I think the Windows Mobile development experience in Visual Studio is second to none. For these reasons, and because competition can lead to improved products, I hope Windows Mobile 7 makes a challenge in the final furlongs of the mobile platform race.