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Cellphones Microsoft

Microsoft Kills the Kin 351

Posted by samzenpus
from the we-hardly-knew-you dept.
adeelarshad82 writes "The Microsoft Kin is dead, or at least it doesn't have a future as a standalone product. Microsoft released a statement suggesting that it's cutting bait on the Windows Phone 7 spinoff and folding the project's staff and technologies into the main body of Windows Phone 7. For now, it seems like Verizon Wireless will continue to sell Kin phones. But with the Kin team essentially disbanded, it's hard to see future updates and support for the line being a priority within Microsoft."
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Microsoft Kills the Kin

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  • Not surprising (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Anonymous Coward on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:29PM (#32751866)

    The Kin can be summed up with the following:

    a.) Name was horrible and made no sense.
    b.) What was the point of the device again?
    c.) Ads were annoying and made no sense

    So in essence this is just another typical Microsoft device. le'sigh.

    • Re:Not surprising (Score:5, Insightful)

      by lgw (121541) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:30PM (#32751870) Journal

      So this was basically the Zune of phones?

      • by LanceUppercut (766964) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:37PM (#32751932)
        Yes. Except that it did not have the huge sales numbers of Zune.
      • As noted last week:

        http://slashdot.org/comments.pl?sid=1692376&cid=32634622&art_pos=7 [slashdot.org]

              Only question - does the Kin come in "Feces Brown"?

      • by Strudelkugel (594414) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:57PM (#32752068)

        YABF - Yet Another Ballmer Flop.

        When is the Microsoft board going to get a clue and send him off to pursue "personal interests"?

        Then his kids will say "Can we get iPhones now?"

        • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

          by binarylarry (1338699)

          Don't worry bro, Ballmer got rid of the real problems in the office.

          Now that it's "all Ballmer, all the time" it's smooth sailing from here on out.

          *sells all Microsoft stock*

          • *sells all Microsoft stock*

            Don't forget to sell your stocks in chair manufacturers, too. He's only going to get to do that once, at home, before his wife rips him a new one.
        • by Joce640k (829181)

          Windows 8 will be centered around the "Windows App Store" - a brilliant innovation I think you'll agree. Microsoft is again leading the world forwards into a new era.

      • Re:Not surprising (Score:4, Insightful)

        by UnknowingFool (672806) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @11:30PM (#32753264)

        From what I know the Kin wasn't a good product missing social features despite being marketed as a social phone.

        • No apps or app store
        • No calendar or way to sync a calendar
        • No IM client even though the ROM supported AOL IM, MS IM, and Yahoo IM
        • No spelling correction or corrective text
        • No expansion slots
        • Only syncs contacts with Facebook and Hotmail directly but not Yahoo. Gmail is through a workaround

        The Zune was a decent player but it was always behind the iPod. The original Zune was on par with the iPod Classic at the time but it didn't really differentiate itself. The only major advantage of the original Zune (squirting) was so crippled as to be useless as a feature. The 2nd gen Zune were much better than the iPod Classic. Unfortunately they were not better than the iPod Touch which released a month before them. With the Zune HD, MS finally has matched the iPod Touch. The problem is that in all the iterations of the Zune, MS never developed the Zune to be more than a media player whereas Apple has designed and marketed the iPod Touch as a media and app platform. Apps give the Touch much more functionality that the Zune can't match and it appears that MS is years away from even starting to match this.

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Anonymous Coward

      Seriously, they expected people to walk into a store and chose this over, say, the Droid/Milestone or the Palm Pre Plus?

    • by Anonymusing (1450747) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:31PM (#32752266)
      If Kin is dead, would Windows Phone 7 be the next of kin?
      • Verizon (Score:2, Insightful)

        by symbolset (646467)
        No doubt Verizon is thrilled about this news and eager to back Microsoft's next effort with lots of co-marketing dollars, shelf space and sales face time after spending many millions up front for an exclusive. Developers must be lining up three deep.
    • Re:Not surprising (Score:5, Insightful)

      by suomynonAyletamitlU (1618513) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:39PM (#32752314)

      d.) The hardware is ugly as sin. What the hell were they thinking?
      e.) Why were they making it a separate OS platform to begin with? Is that just an admission that they couldn't modify any of their existing or in-development mobile platforms enough to accommodate the new features?

      • by Rinikusu (28164)

        d) I like the simplicity of their hardware. It's no EVO 4g, but it shouldn't have to be for a featurephone.
        e) It's my understanding that, like the Zune, it's basically winmo 6.x with a skin. And winmo 6.x is dead dead dead.

        Kinda like the HTC HD2. Nice hardware, but you know it's a dead-end out of the box. Kinda like some android phones, unfortunately.

  • by Nova Express (100383) <lawrenceperson@noSPaM.gmail.com> on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:30PM (#32751868) Homepage Journal

    What the hell was the Kin? Never heard of it before.

    And let me add insult to injury:

    (Sent from my iPhone.)

    • by GeekZilla (398185)

      Beat me to it. WTF is a Kin?

    • by jaymz2k4 (790806) <jaymzNO@SPAMjaymz.eu> on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:33PM (#32751896) Homepage
      It was microsofts attempt to woo the facebook generation [wired.co.uk]. The fact you have never heard of it probably means the targeted marketing was done competently.
      • The fact you have never heard of it probably means the targeted marketing was done competently.

        Considering Microsoft's marketing strategies for Zune, Windows 7, Windows Vista, Bing it's more likely that the marketing was not done competently.

        It's almost as if Ballmer is employing that failed salesman Gill from the Simpson's to develop their product sale strategies because they all appear desperate, corny, out-dated and un-researched.

        • Not ALL of them. The Xbox 360 is really great.

          • by Sorthum (123064)

            Sure, but look at the platform. It's five years old, and despite its new form factor it hasn't really been updated since release.

            I realize they don't want to change things around on game developers, but I'd like to think that we can get better performance today than we could five years ago...

            • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

              by mattack2 (1165421)

              You're totally missing at least one point of a console - to have a stable (features-wise) platform so that developers can develop for one thing only.. I realize that things like Kinect break down that stability, too.

              • by Sorthum (123064)

                No, I truly get that-- it's not a hard concept.

                My point is that that was their last product "hit." I don't think we can find another viable electronic manufacturer that hasn't come out with something droolworthy in half a decade?

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by sortius_nod (1080919)

        Unfortunately having such a narrow scope you're relying on the whims of a specific subset of society and effectively alienating any possible fringe markets. I doubt this product would have made a dent in any market to be honest, it seems like it was more of an half baked marketing development than anything else. Even if the target market isn't exactly tech savvy, they aren't going to buy into something that's not at the top of it's class. The Kin was far from top of it's class.

        As a comment on Engadget said

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by LWATCDR (28044)

        I would have to disagree. As a member of the C64 generation I knew about it. Maybe it was marketed well. The ads looked good but it was a fail for a lot reasons.
        1. It wasn't really a smart phone no app store or selection of games.
        2. It wasn't a messaging/media phone because you had to have a smart phone data plan.
        So for the cost of a Palm WebOS or android phone you could get a Kin. Teenagers my be foolish, lacking in wisdom, and even unable to understand the consequence of their actions but they are not stu

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by tomhudson (43916)

          The ads looked good

          Both times I saw the Kin ad, I said to myself "you've GOT to be kidding."

          A guy shooting pics of his ex-girlfriend?

          That's just creepy. So you lose the women.

          The message it sends is "guys who have a Kin are losers!" So you also lose the men.

          So who was the target market? Stalkers?

          At least that foolishness never made it to Canada.

      • "the targeted marketing was done competently."

        But, sadly, in vain. I can't help but wonder what the total cost of developing and introducing products like the Kins was. Announcing their demise within the same month as their introduction seems a strange (and unprofitable) way of doing business.

        When the rest of the world is using iPhones and Droids, a "social media-only" phone seemed a strange offering indeed.
      • by sootman (158191)

        > The fact you have never heard of it probably means
        > the targeted marketing was done competently.

        The fact that it was killed just WEEKS after introduction probably means the "targeting" was done more competently than the "marketing" was.

        Remember in science when you learned about the difference between accuracy and precision and how it was possible to have one, the other, neither, or both? I think it's something like that.

    • It's just as well. From the commercials, it looked like it did the same thing as my email spam box.
    • by rolfwind (528248)

      You may never heard of it, but the commercials were noticed:
      http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CakBlWTwJK0 [youtube.com]

      So... Microsoft's latest "Me too!" product goes down the tubes. Seems like it's becoming a pattern, a square company trying too hard to be hip. They're simply not going to out-Apple Apple so why don't they find another angle?

      To me, MS has been struggling to find an identity outside the OS/Office market the last decade and mostly failed except with the XBox. Reports usually always mention the overwhelming

  • Good (Score:5, Funny)

    by GreatDrok (684119) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:31PM (#32751880) Journal

    It was a 'kin stupid name. I don't know what the 'kin 'ell they were 'kin thinking. 'kin idiots.

  • Well, that was fast (Score:5, Interesting)

    by wandazulu (265281) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:32PM (#32751884)

    I can't think of any other product that Microsoft made that fell out of its graces so quickly. I think even Microsoft Bob got a year in the stores before it was "retired".

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by ColdWetDog (752185)
      Indeed. The quickest "launch to drop" time I'm aware of in the consumer electronics sector was the ill fated Palm Foleo [wikipedia.org]. (May 30, 2007 to September 4,2007). Maybe other slashdotters will recall even less successful products.
      • Okay, I, for all intents and purposes, was living under a rock during this period. Looking back, why wasn't it launched? What was so different about it from the first eee?

        • by Moofie (22272)

          The fact that you had to own a Treo in order to make it work, and it could do basically nothing on its own.

      • by RMingin (985478)

        I dunno, I think the Courier has it beat. Cancelled before it was released... Or even prototyped... Only announced, just in time to FUD away some iPad sales. Thing is, if they'd waited more before announcing Courier was dead, they would have FUDded away still more iPad sales. As it was, I waffled a little, they canned it, and I bought my iPad. Lousy timing.

  • by Daneurysm (732825) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:32PM (#32751888)
    ...it is rather enjoyable to watch Microsoft these days...I understand that the new boss is probably same as the old boss. But, damn, it's down right fascinating to watch it all unfold.
    • Re: (Score:2, Interesting)

      by Microlith (54737)

      Indeed, it is amusing to watch them squirm and flounder in a market they don't have total dominance over. Watching them swing left and right, outright copying their competitors to try and regain a foothold in a market they got pushed out of. Fortunately, they don't have an incompetent competitor in the market like Sony to leave the door wide open.

      I wonder if this is how MS would be if they weren't tops in the OS and Office suite world, would they be lurching left and right trying to find a place?

      • by Daneurysm (732825) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:50PM (#32752016)
        To be honest, if Microsoft didn't exist until recently I bet they'd be a very innovative and nimble company.

        ...so much baggage in that company. Think of all of the windows tablets...it was the general consensus that tablets were an answer searching for a question. Someone else made that happen. Think of how long ago Windows phones started appearing. They tried so hard and perhaps succeeded very successfully to maintain their 'windows experience' across these three 3rd cousins platforms...to no avail.

        Nearly 2 million Iphone4's sold in a few days time, over 100,000 Android activations a day, "blackberry" is now a verb...Hell, even the great-grandchild of the Palm Pilot made a more significant dent in the market years after schooling Microsoft in a different (but related) market years earlier.

        ...such interesting times.
  • I hate to say it, but I'm somewhat superficial with my phones. I don't need them to be "beautiful" or anything, but I don't want it to be ugly. This was definitely an ugly phone. I have the Nokia N900, which won't win any beauty contests, but I think it definitely looks nicer than the Kin. I even had an OpenMoko, although I actually think that's a somewhat elegant looking phone.

    • Re: (Score:3, Funny)

      by bsDaemon (87307)

      wait... the kin was a PHONE?! I thought it was a softball the got the internet.

  • by olsmeister (1488789) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:36PM (#32751916)
    How will I know when ?uestlove is having a free concert in the park?
  • by MrEricSir (398214) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:40PM (#32751948) Homepage

    The real question here isn't so much why did they get rid of it -- that's pretty obvious -- but why they released this product in the first place? Is their management really so out of touch they thought this had potential?

    • by straponego (521991) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:49PM (#32752008)
      They just can't help themselves, especially in mobile. It's like, if they ever stick to a plan for a full year, we'll all know what they're up to! Can't have that. Call it the Sun syndrome...

      But on the bright side, one of their employees has come to the conclusion that, in principle anyway, it would be good if their software worked. And was easy to use.

      http://www.crn.com/software/225701869

      So maybe they'll give that a shot soon.
      • Oh, that link is classic. It's also 100% applicable to the "Linux on the desktop" issue, too.

        • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

          by boxwood (1742976)

          Actually the problem with the linux desktop is lack of hype and the fact that you can easily reconfigure it.

          MacOS has lots of hype and you can reconfigure it very much. This forces people to use MacOS more or less with the default settings. And because of the hype people are willing to use it long enough to get used to it.

          There is no hype for the linux desktop. And since its not what people are used to, they start spending lots of time reconfiguring it to make it more like windows. The end result is that ma

    • by iluvcapra (782887) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @09:26PM (#32752582)

      why they released this product in the first place? Is their management really so out of touch they thought this had potential?

      They paid a small fortune to buy Danger and the Sidekick platform, and couldn't admit that they got taken and bought something that was obsolete, if transiently popular at the time they bought it. Notice that Robbie Bach, MS VP of entertainment and devices, the guy who made the call to buy Danger, was eased out of the company a few weeks ago.

      • by wickerprints (1094741) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @01:59AM (#32753850)

        Danger/Sidekick was a thriving platform long before MS bought it and ran it into the ground. Under the right management, it could have been THE dominant mobile device for the 15-25yo market. Problem is, neither Danger nor MS anticipated the impact of the iPhone. They had a good thing going--the Hiptop has been around since 2002; the platform was innovative and mature. The first iPhone came out, sans 3G, in 2007, and the App Store didn't even exist until mid-2008, a few months after MS acquired Danger. There was PLENTY of time to adapt and compete. And it didn't happen.

        Then MS mismanagement caused the server failure and data loss in late 2009 that basically killed what little was left of the Sidekick. The real story here is not that MS got taken--it's that they not only failed to capitalize on their acquisition, but they actively fucked up what assets they acquired. They basically let the Sidekick wither on the vine by diverting resources to develop "Project Pink," which is--wait for it--the Kin. Worked out really well, didn't it?

        MS *has no mobile strategy.* NONE. They are flailing desperately, and this latest debacle has only proven to the consumer that MS mobile products are NOT to be trusted. As a consumer, what does hearing this news tell you? MS might as well post a gigantic banner saying, "if you buy our phones today, don't count on them being supported tomorrow." Windows Phone is next to die.

        People like to make fun of Steve Jobs and his "reality distortion field." I think the real RDF is around Ballmer, who has surrounded himself with lackeys and yes-men, executives who are in it for the money. There is this pervasive belief that MS can compete in any tech market by way of throwing money at every situation--that they can succeed simply because they are MS. Those tactics may have worked a decade ago, but times have changed.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          by nine-times (778537)

          Problem is, neither Danger nor MS anticipated the impact of the iPhone.

          This is what it comes down to. The Sidekick was a pretty good platform for the pre-iPhone days, as were Windows, Palm, and Blackberry. However, the iPhone pretty well blew everyone out of the water in the consumer market. Blackberry held its own in the enterprise market, but they're faltering. Everyone else realized that they had to revamp to take on the iPhone, which resulted in Android phones.

          Sorry to the Apple haters, but they really did change the mobile landscape. Microsoft hasn't kept up.

    • The real question here isn't so much why did they get rid of it -- that's pretty obvious -- but why they released this product in the first place? Is their management really so out of touch they thought this had potential?

      Actually, I was thinking it might make a decent kids phone. Not that kids would want it mind you, but parents buy the thing and a phone that allows them to do the favorite social networking sites while not free access to the internet might be a nice compromise that both parents and kids co

  • Cutting Bait? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by frostfreek (647009) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:44PM (#32751978)
    I don't understand fishing metaphors! Seriously. What is that supposed to mean?
    • by dangitman (862676) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:01PM (#32752090)

      I don't understand fishing metaphors! Seriously. What is that supposed to mean?

      I think it's when you realize you just slept with an underage girl (jailbait) and knife her to death so she can't tell anyone about it.

    • Re:Cutting Bait? (Score:5, Informative)

      by Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:11PM (#32752120) Journal
      When you are fishing, sometimes the line gets snagged on a underground log or weeds. You can struggle for a while trying to get it free, but at some point to get on with fishing you have to cut the line and attach a new hook complete with new bait. Or sometimes your bait just isn't working for the conditions for what ever reason, to switch to new bait, you'd have to cut off the old bait. So basically it means one will be trying over again with a new approach by admitting a previous mistake.
      • Re:Cutting Bait? (Score:5, Informative)

        by paiute (550198) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:22PM (#32752210)

        When you are fishing, sometimes the line gets snagged on a underground log or weeds. You can struggle for a while trying to get it free, but at some point to get on with fishing you have to cut the line and attach a new hook complete with new bait. Or sometimes your bait just isn't working for the conditions for what ever reason, to switch to new bait, you'd have to cut off the old bait. So basically it means one will be trying over again with a new approach by admitting a previous mistake.

        I always thought the metaphor of cutting bait was slicing up other fish to use as bait, so cutting bait was preparing to fish as opposed to actually fishing. In that sense, fish or cut bait is a polite equivalent to shit or get off the pot.

    • Allow me to make a car analogy for you. When someone farts, you have to roll down your windshield before you run out of gas. Otherwise, your carburetor get sludged up, but not before your treads are too worn down.

    • I don't understand fishing metaphors! Seriously. What is that supposed to mean?

      I don't know either, perhaps someone can frame it as a car analogy.

  • Next of Kin? (Score:5, Insightful)

    by BearRanger (945122) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:47PM (#32751996)
    That would be Windows Phone 7. Thanks to Android it's likely to meet a similar fate.
    • by mcrbids (148650) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @12:08AM (#32753458) Journal

      Microsoft has a really tough time coming up with anything with a future outside of Windows Desktops. Even that was suspect for a while when Vista sucked so horribly badly for so godawfully long.

      They've had OVER A DECADE to get Windows Mobile "right". I have a Winmo 6.0 phone, and while it's quite capable, it's also clear that a designer never got anywhere NEAR it. Buttons move randomly. It's slow. Some buttons (EG: green "call" button) work the same everywhere except where they do something else - a result that's immensely maddening. I could be looking at a number that I KNOW is a cell phone, but I have no way to simply send a text message to it without exiting everything and go back in through contacts... as one of too many examples to name.

      Future?

      Remember Plays4Sure? [wikipedia.org] It was Microsoft's answer to the iTunes store, and it almost worked. Numerous music manufacturers were beginning to rally behind it, until Microsoft came out with their Zune, which didn't use PlaysForSure at all. Instead, it had its own marketplace!

      How much louder of a vote of "no confidence" could Microsoft give their own product than to refuse to use it in their own development? To this day, you can't buy music with Microsoft's music store and have it work on their own player.

      You can't make up this kind of ineptitude.

  • by fermion (181285) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:49PM (#32752010) Homepage Journal
    When I saw the ads I thought the Kin was something that MS did right. I am surprised that they did not succeed. The massive ad campaign should have been enough to make a dent. What I did no realize is that to use the phone the way it is intended, with unlimited texting and such, the recurring billing from Verizon would be well over $100 a month.

    This is a phone for kids and young adult. How many of these are able to afford more than $100 a month for a phone. My first mobile phone was $50 a month, and that was when I was working at higher than minimum wage. Sure the ads depict kids with unlimited resources who can afford to take cabs around the city and fly all over the country, but that is like a TV where people with no visible means of income can afford spacious NYC apartments. No one takes it seriously, or maybe they did.

    I think this is another case of people worshiping verizon no matter how little sense it makes, thinking that if they can cut a deal they wil automatically become successful. I keep asking if one wants to sell phones to a market that does not already have smart phone saturation, why not go for Cricket or Boost? They could keep the recurring to something a young adult could have a chance of keeping up with.

    • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:33PM (#32752278)
      How are you surprised? What did the Kin do when compared to Android? For about the same price, someone could have gotten an Android phone, lets see here:

      Apps, Android has a lot, Kin had none.

      Flash, depending on the phone Flash could be possible on the Android phone, it was impossible on the Kin

      Browser, I have no doubt that Android's browsers were better than what was on the Kin

      Etc.

      The only thing that would have saved the Kin would be a reduced price data plan which didn't happen. It wasn't Verizon that was the main problem it was a phone that did less than the comparable Android phones for the same required data plan. Yes, Verizon could have easily helped it work, but it was MS that created such a niche-less device in the first place.

      As for the $100 statement, when you figure in all the things it can replace its probably cheaper today to get an "everything" plan than a home phone, cable and internet plan, plus, its a lot more convenient.
    • by Rinikusu (28164)

      I like the hardware. I think nVidia's Tegra platform is pretty solid. But, without ability to download/run apps, silly games, and the outragerous freaking plan (seriously, $100/month aimed at tweens/teens? no thanks!), they killed it before it even started. Hey, at $50/month, plus $15/month for Zune Pass? I'd be interested and I'm 37 (and male).

      I'd be much more interested if someone can root the kin and get a fully working version of Android on it. Again, I like the hardware, I'm just not sure they th

    • by Junta (36770)

      I suspect the plan price was enough to kill it off, though I have some shred of hope that humanity saw the ads that did nothing more than say "OMG you can facebook" and collectively shrugged. Of course, the devices looked bad and the interface in the ads looked even worse.

      In terms of Verizon worshipping, the full story sounds more like some MS guy liked Sidekicks (which if they were thinking clearly would be recognized as a stopgap rather than an endgame). Then they acquired danger and decided to do it th

  • by The_mad_linguist (1019680) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @07:54PM (#32752036)

    Well, I suppose we'll be calling Ballmer "Fëanor" now.

  • It was only last week that I read a rumor that only about 500 of these things had been sold. Perhaps the kids they were marketing these to have Macs?

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Darkness404 (1287218)
      Perhaps the kids they were marketing it to realized that if they were going to have to pay a smartphone data plan they might as well just get a smartphone that actually has apps and a future.

      Really, Android phones are cheap these days and even the crappiest of Android phones can do more than Kin can.
  • ... but I've only been seeing ads on TV for the Kin for about 2-3 weeks. And on top of that, only for a Kin on one network. I wouldn't exactly say its been a mass-market item so far; if it appealed to me (which it does not) I would have had to switch networks to use it as I am currently on a GSM network.

    I would say if they are killing it already, it died from bad marketing (and bad corporate decisions) as anything.
    • Bad marketing had nothing to do with it.

      The problem was you were paying for a smartphone data plan and for the phone. For the price you were paying for a Kin why not go with Android or a Blackberry?

      Microsoft tried to tap a non existent niche and failed. Had they struck a deal with Verizon to get a discounted data plan? Sure, it might have survived, but was there a single thing done right with the Kin when compared to an Android or Blackberry device?
    • by Facegarden (967477) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:21PM (#32752204)

      ... but I've only been seeing ads on TV for the Kin for about 2-3 weeks....

      That's the crazy thing... it's only been *on the market* for 2-3 weeks. They basically killed it right away.

      Engadget covered this a bit better, but basically through bad project management, they delayed the whole thing by 18 months, and a LOT has changed in the smartphone space in that time. If they had come out with it 18 months ago, it might have made sense.

      Now even microsoft is coming out with a new mobile OS, it really doesn't make sense to support two, and Verizon was pretty upset that microsoft delayed it so long, so they didn't give microsoft the low plan pricing they originally planned for.

      All in all, it never made sense to anyone, and now its gone. Its like the palm Foleo all over again.

      -Taylor

  • by RazorSharp (1418697) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:09PM (#32752112)

    until something sticks. That seems to be their current strategy with cell phones, and unfortunately, despite this individual failure, with their money and resources, I have a feeling something will stick eventually. For every Clippy and Bob and ME and Vista there is an XP and 7. Hrmm, okay, no alternative to Clippy and Bob ever took off. But hell, Office is still raking in dough.

    • by Darkness404 (1287218) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:24PM (#32752226)
      Microsoft seems to be willingly blind to what their users want and what is out there though. It seems to take a financial failure before they will wake up. Simply doing a crap job copying an existing product isn't going to earn you any customers, you have to be better and that is where Microsoft's things fail in most cases. And yes, Office is making MS quite a bit of money, but once word gets out about Google Docs and OOo, the case to use Office keeps on becoming less and less for most users.

      I don't see Microsoft making a decent phone anytime soon because it keeps trying to emulate BlackBerry, the iPhone, Android and WebOS and failing at all of them. Microsoft will never get the reliability of BlackBerry OS, Microsoft can never reach the cult-like status of Apple, it can't just decide not to include a major feature like Flash, Multitasking, copy/paste, etc. until a future software update and expect people to buy it, Microsoft can never reach the level of appeal of the Google cloud services nor the openness of a Linux-based OS, and Microsoft will try, but fail to reach the level of ease of use of WebOS just like they tried to copy OS X and failed.
      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by Tom (822)

        And yes, Office is making MS quite a bit of money, but once word gets out about Google Docs and OOo, the case to use Office keeps on becoming less and less for most users.

        Unfortunately not. Their main game - lock in - is still working splendid. So much that my girlfriend is thinking about buying a windos netbook. She'll have Ubuntu on it for (her words!) when she wants to get some real work done, but the main reason is that she needs MS Office. None of the alternatives work well enough with their proprietary, fucked-up, pushed-through-ISO-and-then-implemented-differently formats and her new job requires her to be able to work with those documents.

    • by rolfwind (528248)

      People really look at XP with rose-colored glasses. It was still a security nightmare. The reason XP did so well was because it was backwards compatible to previous Windows programs and really, what else are people going to buy? Get a new computer, Windows is on there in 99% of cases. Such are the benefits of a monopoly. Vista, otoh, often broke things that previously ran and was slightly too fat for the hardware at the outset although, predictably, hardware got faster. Windows 7 is OKAY, but I can't

  • by liber9 (1480479) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @08:32PM (#32752276)
    Slashdot, how could you miss the chance for the headline, "Microsoft kills it's Kin"?
  • Dear Mr Cardholder,
    the project kin dies in a accident, that leaved no survivors,
    he leaved 3000000 of Australian dollars in Nigerian bank,
    to get this we need you to be claimed next of kin. ....

  • FUD (Score:2, Insightful)

    by BlueBoxSW.com (745855)

    Isn't it great that MS is creating their OWN FUD these days?

    They need a serious shakeup over there.

    Attempt at taking over the web with .Net: FAIL

    Attempt at killing Flash with Silverlight: FAIL

    Attempt at killing the iPod with Zune: FAIL

    Attempt at Killing the iPhone with Windows7/Kin: FAIL

    I hope IE9 takes HTML5 seriously, because people are no longer afraid to install their own browser. Their assumed dominance could turn into another big FAIL.

    At least Active Directory and SQL Server still hold a pretty solid

    • Attempt at taking over the web with .Net: FAIL

      I'm not sure .NET was ever supposed to be what you seem to be saying, but there's certainly no small amount of .NET development being done even today.

  • by RevWaldo (1186281) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @09:16PM (#32752536)
    Withe pretty much any other thing you can name, I can own more than one, even if they do the same thing but slightly differently.

    Two cars if I can afford it? One's a pickup and the other's a Mini? Can do.
    Hi-tops, oxfords, and sandals? A big TV and a little TV? No problem.
    But for just personal use I can only really have one mobile phone. If I want two phones I'd have to pay an additional fee and have an extra phone number that I don't need.
    If I was heavily into social networking, having a phone designed from the ground up just for that could be handy. But I'd still want a "real" smart phone that's good at everything else. If I have to choose between one or the other, I'd take the smart phone that's just OK at social networking.

    If they want things like the Kin to work, they need to let users have more than one phone on the same number. Only then will people other than tween girls buy a "fun" phone along with a "real" phone.

    .
  • by OgGreeb (35588) <og@digimark.net> on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @09:24PM (#32752578) Homepage

    IMO Microsoft just made their mobile platform problems worse. They spent all that time, money and effort to roll Kin out,
    made deals with other companies, blew out a huge advertising campaign, and then waited all of about a nanosecond to
    kill it.

    Every Kin cell phone buyer is now locked into a (usually) 2 year contract to use and pay for a phone with no future. Didn't
    they do the same thing with OEMs and end-users of their DRM'ed PlaysForSure music?

    Why in the world would anyone be stupid enough to skip over all that and buy into Windows 7 Phones? -- Because *this*
    time they'll get it right and not drop the tech at the first sign of turbulence?

  • by Gerald (9696) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @10:02PM (#32752812) Homepage

    Baby. Wooooooooo.

  • by NotSoHeavyD3 (1400425) on Wednesday June 30, 2010 @10:26PM (#32752930)
    the guy was kind of stalking his ex-girlfriend or something? Wow, who'd imagine that would fail?
  • by jonwil (467024) on Thursday July 01, 2010 @12:20AM (#32753504)

    The moment Verizon decided that they would require a $30 per month data plan for the Kin, it was dead in the water.

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