If you’ve been looking at the current onslaught of 5-inch and larger Android devices that are either on the market already or rumored to be in development, you may have wondered where all the 5-inch Windows Phones are. Similarly, if you looked at HTC’s Droid DNA and thought something along the lines of “wow, if only this ran Windows Phone 8…”, here’s some bad news.
HTC won’t be making a large-screened Windows Phone anytime soon. The reason for this? The platform’s limitations. This, in fact, has always been the reason why certain shiny new hardware advancements haven’t made it to the WP camp, or if they have (see HD displays and dual-core processors), they’ve been pretty late compared to the Android competition.
Once again, a hardware feature isn’t supported by Microsoft’s newest mobile operating system. WP8 apparently doesn’t go anywhere past 1280×768, a resolution just slightly higher than ‘plain’ 720p HD. And those 5-inch screens that are so en vogue right now come with Full HD 1080p (1920×1080) resolution.
HTC did consider releasing a WP8 device with a large, 5-inch-ish screen yet with a lower-res display, but decided that such an offering wouldn’t be competitive with its own Android smartphones, or with those put out by Samsung or others. This is according to “a person familiar with the project”.
The project was to bring a 5″+ device with WP8 to market sometime next year, hoping it would help the ailing Taiwanese smartphone manufacturer to regain some lost market share. But such a handset wouldn’t actually be the right move for this goal, the company eventually decided.
Microsoft sure is losing the spec war to Android with its insistence on taking its time until it allows newly developed hardware to get Windows Phone. Of course, the Redmond giant is also losing the market share war to Android, and, perhaps, the high-end mindshare war to Apple and, to some extent, Samsung’s Galaxy series of Androids.
Becoming more flexible with regard to hardware requirements may help Microsoft in the future, but it surely doesn’t look like the company is in a hurry to do anything about… anything. It’s taking its sweet time in between OS releases, bringing just a few new features with each, emulating Apple’s software release model while forgetting about the incredibly big gap between Apple’s market share and its own. When you’re the underdog, you need to innovate, and do it a lot faster than your competitors.
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- Bye bye, Microsoft KIN