Microsoft has never truly been a company that has mastered messaging. The company has muffled press conferences, confused developers and agitated consumers from time to time when trying to get their messages across. Microsoft as a business tends to get itself stuck between giving too much arbitrary detail about small features, and stonewalling on large consumer facing products. When the Microsoft decides to mitigate their messaging faux pas by taking the silent route, things tend to fare much worse for the company.
Take for instance the messaging app that was in Windows 8. Microsoft threw the new messaging app into the operating system, failed to highlight its presence with marketing, and then pulled it from Windows in the next update without any clear explanation for its removal. Many early adopters of Windows 8 were thrilled to have a unified contacts and messaging app that synced across their desktop and mobile devices. At the time, it a was notion ahead of what Apple’s OSX Yosemite would offer two years later. Once again, Microsoft was unable to communicate its strengths.
While Windows 8 was a quagmire of a situation for Microsoft, it looks like Windows 10 isn’t offering up any pleasant distinctions when it comes to messaging or the messaging app. The messaging app that was presumed to come with the Windows 10 launch looks like it may miss its debut in late summer according to a report from Neowin.
During the Windows 10 event in January, the Windows team talked about a messaging app that looked to have Skype as its underlying framework. Windows 10 users would finally get back the messaging service that was ripped away from them in Windows 8, but with even more features. From the desktop, Windows users would be able to sync their conversations (through Skype presumably), text, send video and picture images and make calls. If you don’t recall any of this information, that’s ok because Microsoft has not referenced it at any conference since January. However, some inside Microsoft are finally speaking out about the app, and the news doesn’t bode well for Windows users who hoped for a messaging app. According to Neowin, who talked to Windows insiders, “they (the Windows team) would be very lucky to have an app in Windows 10 for the upcoming RTM release, while another said they did not foresee SMS coming to the platform in 2015.” The idea is that the Windows team is busy squashing bugs and implementing fixes to reach their late summer deadline for a Windows 10 launch. There just isn’t any time to add a potentially buggy messaging app to the mix.
To add to the mishandling of the messaging app situation is the staggered release of Windows features that appear on Windows Mobile. A new version of Skype messaging (presumably a Universal App from Windows) is expected to hit Windows Mobile. However, if the Windows team isn’t planning to receive a messaging app for the platform until sometime next year, Windows Mobile users can expect to wait even longer than that for the app.
Microsoft hasn’t confirmed or denied any of the claims just yet, and we don’t expect them to until they have a product or an estimated date. Again, Microsoft’s non-message may be just as damning as their early messaging from the January event.Further reading: Messaging, Microsoft, Skype, Windows, Windows 10