With Windows Mobile leaving Microsoft with an almighty hangover, Windows Phone 7 already had a steep hill to climb.
However, the assertion by InfoWorld's Galen Gruman that Microsoft should pack up its toys and go home makes a phoenix from the flames comeback appear all the less likely.
After viewing the OS in action at Mobile Beat last week, Gruman has labelled Windows Phone 7 a 'disaster', almost begging Microsoft to pull the platform pre-release and announcing it's leaving the smartphone race for good.
Clunky and old
Gruman claims that, not only does Windows Phone 7's much heralded UI not live up to expectations, but that almost all of the software is built on top of archaic standards.
"Windows Phone 7 is a waste of time and money. It's a platform that no carrier, device maker, developer, or user should bother with," Gruman says on the site.
"Seeing the UI in action across several tasks, not just in a highly controlled presentation, shows how awkward and unsophisticated it is - I had the same feeling you get when you got a movie based on a great trailer, only to discover that all the good stuff was in the trailer and the rest of the movie was a mess. A pig, in fact."
Changing his tune
Gruman also claims a lack of support for HTML5 (Windows Phone 7 used IE7 with added IE8 components, according to his report) and an inability to truly multi-task or copy and paste also put the OS well behind its rivals.
However, all such factors have been known for some time, with Gruman himself having claimed the launch of Windows Phone 7 could be as "significant as Apple's original iPhone" four months ago.
"I don't think for a minute that Windows Phone 7 is an iPhone-killer," he said at the time, "but it's the first new major mobile platform that actually innovates in significant ways from the iPhone."
Back in March, it was the UI's very reliance on decks and tiles a contact and social focus approach as opposed to the now standard app set-up of iPhone and Android that made Windows Phone 7 stand out for Gruman.
Now, it is its downfall, with Gruman stating users will soon find any tiles with multiple apps in too labour intensive to manage.
Of course, Gruman's assertion that Microsoft would be better off pulling out of the smartphone race appears almost entirely consumer focused.
From a business point of view, ignoring the rise of smartphones simply isn't an option Windows itself is increasingly threatened by the functionality of iPhone, Android and BlackBerry.
With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.
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