T-Mobile UK still thinks Windows Phone is Windows Mobile

We’ve all done it, skimped facts, used generalisations as fillers to create the illusion that we had in fact been paying attention, but there’s precious few who can claim such a faux-pas for a corporate giant who has set aside upwards of $400 million to advertise their latest and greatest operating system, struggling against biases from uneducated sales staff and desperate to shake off a less than auspicious legacy.

Nonetheless, T-Mobile’s UK website, despite having had a whole eight months and fourteen days to look at the press release, is still calling Microsoft’s shiny new operating system “Windows Mobile”. While one could forgive the less eagle-eyed web editor referring to the OS as Windows Phone 7 Series at the worst, the description they give informs us (rather dimly, I might add) that the picture we see of a phone clearly running Windows Phone 7 is actually Windows Mobile. “Developed by Microsoft®” it says, not forgetting that ever corporate registered logo, “it’s designed to be like desktop versions of Windows.” Excuse me? “You can also download and buy software from Windows® Marketplace for Mobile.” Er, no thanks.

Seriously, I so wanted not to read into this too much and blame it on an outdated section of the site, since the link they provide correctly directs prospective customers to their Windows Phone section. But why the graphic of Windows Phone 7? Surely in the search for that graphic, some accurate descriptor was offered that involved the number 7? Why tie an outdated (maybe even reviled to some) operating system to a product that has been designed from the ground up to be something unique and groundbreaking and that has tried so hard to break every link to its predecessor? Everything about WP7 screams “don’t call me Windows Mobile”.

In Windows Phone 7, Microsoft has created a product that its customers feel passionate about. We create ads for them, even going as far as setting up websites to let the folks in Redmond know about weaknesses in their sales chain. Telecoms, more than customers, should be ensuring that their clients do well; Orange has, sitting down with Microsoft to give us UK customers more than £70 worth of apps for an entire month free of charge. T-Mobile and Orange share a corporate bed which I assume enables them to be privy to each other’s business deals, or, at the very least, access to their product information.

Microsoft are trying hard to penetrate a market that have been force-fed a poor standard in mobile software. Being the worst mobile provider (in my personal experience) of the Big 3 here in the UK, T-Mobile really needs to get their act together, if not for partner due-diligence, then at least for consumer clarity. Am I making a mountain out of a “Mobile” here? A quick Google/Bing search isn’t asking too much, is it? Let me know what you think in the comments below.