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Microsoft Kin (wikipedia.org)
25 points by thunderbong 86 days ago | hide | past | favorite | 10 comments

I love this form factor of phones. It's a shame that no-one else does. I still miss my Motorola DROID 4, it was a great phone with a slide-out hard keyboard, but couldn't keep up with the demands of Android and newer apps.

Since the DROID, I've had several 'normal' Android phones, and I still miss that hard keyboard; I'm awful at typing on a on-screen keyboard even now.

The only hard keyboard phone I know of, that can still run modern Android is the Blackberry Key2. They are still very expensive on eBay, so I know I'm not alone in this desire to have a proper keyboard.

Unihertz is shipping a new one in September [0]. I'm on the Jelly 2 right now and happy with the quality but, the on-screen keyboard is pretty hard to use so I decided to give the new one a shot.

[0] https://www.kickstarter.com/projects/jellyphone/titan-pocket...

I had one too, having a real keyboard was awesome. I put off upgrading phones for as long as a could. I rooted it and installed CyanogenMod and got a better aftermarket battery but eventually it was just to slow to run the newer versions of Android and apps.

I remember the modest hype around these devices. The hardware was made by an acquired company called Danger, who previously made the very popular Sidekick phone that had a keyboard and was popular towards the end of the era before real smartphones (I mean before iPhone 1). It was dead on arrival in part because it used a custom OS based on windows CE, since this preceded Windows Phone. This, and the prolonged death of Windows Mobile ultimately distracted from and undermined Windows Phone, which was actually legitimately impressive. It’s a shame we didn’t get a third OS competitor in the mobile ecosystem.

Danger was great, right up until the moment they got bought by Microsoft.

Then they were pretty much completely and totally dead.

They weren’t the first acquisition that Microsoft effectively killed, and I’m sure they won’t be the last.

I remember seeing so many commercials for this thing, how could it have possibly sold so badly? I was even considering getting one.

2010 was when affordable Android handsets flooded the market in my area. I think KIN OS simply stood no chance against what was by that time de facto mobile ecosystem for that segment. Even Windows Phone wouldn't make a dent in Android's market share until Microsoft came up with the super-cheap Lumia 520.

But to sell under 1000 with Microsoft’s name attached? It still seems crazy to me. But I suppose you’re right I wound up going with an Android phone myself that year.

Holy crap, I had no idea the number was that low!

A lot of Danger people went on to make Android, so we have Microsoft's acquisition to thank for that.

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