Back in February, I made a post titled “Now Hiring at the Microsoft Naming Department,” where I wrote about the inconsistencies in the naming of most of Microsoft’s products, with Windows Mobile 6 (with Classic, Standard, and Pro) being the latest example.
Well, now we have some answers posted over at the WM Team Blog:
The marketers had a tough problem here that they needed to solve. The problem was that we were distinguishing our two products with the names “PocketPC” and “Smartphone,” but the rest of the world was using the term “Smartphone” for things that we were calling “PocketPCs.” We kept having conversations that went like this,
Customer: “I tried to put this Smartphone software on my device and it didn’t work.”
Us: “You have a PocketPC, not a Smartphone. You need to use the PocketPC version of the software.”
Customer: “No I don’t. I have a Smartphone. It even says so on the box.”
It was clear that we had to get rid of the names “PocketPC” and “Smartphone.” But we were facing another problem. Over the last few years we’ve been consistently making PocketPC more and more like Smartphone. We’re going to continue on this path and, eventually, the only difference between them will be that one has a touch screen and the other doesn’t.
Now THAT makes sense, though I wish they hadn’t gone with the term “Standard” because it sounds boring in comparison to “Professional.” Perhaps just WM6 “with” and “without” touchscreen could have done it!
For the full post from the WMTB, click here.