We don't see these announcements playing out the way they would have in the gogo 90's, but the magnitude of these deals are equal or bigger, and have more meaning in the long term than what we saw in the last tech boom.
even following your logic and supposing that buying MOTO would have helped MSFT achieve these goals - they still haven't paid the billions, or do you suggest that there was a bidding war (and a young cool player just overbid them ? :)
When asked why don't they make their own Windows Phone(with WP7) instead of relying on OEMs for it, their reply was 'Microsoft likes to create platforms'.
This is the reason that they will probably stay away from Nokia.
I think their one exception is consoles, where they went with the industry standard of vertically integrated hardware.
If there's one consistent pattern to OS platforms (MSFT or otherwise) is that you can expect your OEMs to completely manhandle and abuse it.
It happened to Windows, it's happening now to Android, and without Nokia around to whip the other OEMs into line, it will happen with WP7 also.
Is it any surprise that the most sought after phones have all been vertically integrated? There's a level of hardware-software integration and polish possible there that OEM-based platforms have yet to be able to approach.
It's not easy to manhandle and abuse WP7. No one can preinstall running services and non-uninstallable(!) apps like on Android. All OEMS/carriers get is a longer tile on the homescreen that can be removed/uninstalled with a long press. There are strict minimum hardware requirements. I think MS learnt the lesson from the PCs.
>Is it any surprise that the most sought after phones have all been vertically integrated?
Care to back that up? The only recent example is iPhone. RIM and WebOS are either slow or going down. The counter examples are Android which seem to be doing VERY well and displacing iPhone/Symbian/RIM as the top dog.
Which at the end of the day is just a subset of the "gadget/tech enthusiast" community, which is a tiny subset even then of the greater population.
The cachet and demand of the Evo 4G to, say, the iPhone, or BlackBerry during its heyday, are completely different.
The phones you listed have HUGE worldwide demand. While it may not eclipse iPhone because it's one device, they're nothing to sneeze at, and the demand goes way beyond geeks.
Is there some place where you're getting your hard data?
Uhh, Zune? And it's particularly relevant given the ipod/iphone transition path.
EDIT: Some more background here: