By all accounts the NYPD’s adoption of Windows Phones was a blazing success, making the force more effective and responsive.
Like many other companies, councils and institutions who bet on Microsoft however, Microsoft’s abandonment of the mobile device market has forced the police force to make some hard decisions, which in this case means a disruptive switch to iOS a mere two years after starting the project on Windows Phone.
When we last reported on this issue a year ago the NYPD was planning to switch their Lumia 640 XL and Lumia 830 to Windows 10 Mobile, with Jessica Tisch, the department’s deputy commissioner for information technology saying “We’ve spent the past year and a half building out a platform, getting the data in order, and giving out the devices. Now that we have that platform, and it’s 36,000 officers strong, we plan to continue to build on it.”
Clearly, the ever receding market share and reduced OEM support for the OS resulted in a different decision being made, according to the New York Post. The Post notes the Windows Phones are obsolete, can not be upgraded and are no longer supported by Microsoft.
The force now plans to replace their 36,000 Windows Phones with iPhones by the end of the year, and will also need to create a large number of custom applications that interface with their Crime Information Centre and dispatch service, likely at great cost (though it should be noted that the Windows Phone project was funded by confiscated money.)
The Post reports the blame game has already started, with Jessica Tisch the main scapegoat.
“She was in charge. It was her project, no question about that,” a source said.
We do not know what will happen to Tisch yet, but another victim of this fiasco would be any future attempts by Microsoft to re-enter the smartphone market. The death of Windows 10 Mobile would be the 3rd smartphone platform Microsoft has abandoned, and I do not think anyone could in good faith recommend trusting Microsoft a 4th time. Do our readers agree?