Microsoft & Nokia Reach Market Dominance In 2015... Or Not


A few years ago, I was on the bandwagon of belief when all of the tech pundits made bold predictions that Nokia & Microsoft would reach total market dominance over Android & Apple by the year 2015. What happened?

We all bought the story because of the reasoning, that Nokia once dominated the world of feature phones, and that Microsoft dominated the world of operating systems. Windows Mobile plus Nokia hardware was supposed to equal unparalleled success in the smartphone market.

But what happened?

All of the cards foretold of fortunes to be made by these two tech juggernauts, and the planets were supposedly lined up to create the stage for the impending takeover of the smartphone world. But now that we have reached 2015, where is Microsoft and Nokia in the grand scheme of things?

Apple continues to dominate with the new iPhone 6 and 6+, with the new iOS 8 platform. And Samsung continues to squash the Android market with its flagship Galaxy products, powered by Android KitKat. But our "match made in heaven" comprised of Microsoft and Nokia seems to be lagging far behind, as they always have.

I thought Microsoft and Nokia had a great start with the Lumia 920 smartphone, and all of the later versions of their device. The operating system was supposed to be super easy to use, and a much better match for those of us using Windows based PCs. I thought I would be a prime target for converting to Windows on my smartphone, since I use a PC and a laptop every day.

But it never happened. I've tested and tried the Nokia devices using the Windows Phone platform. While I did find it easy to use, I worried about not having the ability to find all of my most favorite apps under their system. When I switched from Apple to Android in 2012, I was able to download about 80% of my most used apps on the Android platform.

I'm hard-pressed to believe that Windows will capture the attention of developers around the world and motivate them to bring all of my favorite apps to the Windows Phone market. It hasn't happened yet, and I don't have much confidence believing it will in the near future.

While the Windows-based Nokia devices are super slick and durable, I have found them to be a total pain-in-the-derrier when it comes to servicing and repairing the hardware. As the owner of a smartphone repair shop, I have learned to send Nokia smartphone owners to my competitors down the street. Cracked screen? Busted LCD panel? Take it somewhere else, because it's not worth the headache.

That might be part of the reason why Nokia failed to dominate the market as predicted. It might just be that Microsoft and Nokia never became "cool". Whether their devices and operating system functionality is great, or a pile of crap, nothing matters until their products become a "thing".

The smartphone market is like the fashion industry. Until Microsoft and Nokia become "cool" in the minds of consumers, they will never hit critical mass and dominate the market. I would love to see a competitor break into the Apple/Android monopoly, but I don't believe we will witness such an even for a few years if anything.

In the meantime, It's Samsung & Android for me on the smartphone front, Apple's iPad for my tablet, and my Windows-based custom PC for my desktop.

What do you think the reasons are behind the failure of Microsoft and Nokia to fulfill the predictions of the past? I'd sure like to hear your opinion!

Carlton Flowers
The Gadget Guru

Shocking Trend For Texting While Driving - Were You Aware Of This?


A recent survey from AT&T exposes a shocking new trend. Texting-while-driving among adult commuters has now surprassed the teenage class.

This is something I would never have predicted to happen, but it makes perfectly good sense when you think about the circumstances that motivate the behavior.

Before we talk about the reasons why I believe this trend exists in the first place, let's look at some of the facts that AT&T uncovered in their research:

  • Nearly half of commuters (49%) admitted to texting while driving, a higher rate than reported by teens (43%)
  • They are doing so more than they used to. Six in 10 commuters said they never texted while driving three years ago.
  • Texting while driving despite knowing the risks. 98% said sending a text or email while driving isn’t safe.
  • For many, it has become a habit. More than 40% of those who admitted to texting while driving called it a habit.

The reasoning smacks right in the face of logic. We as adults know better, but our actions are exactly opposite of our common sense. Is there a reason for this trend? Can we get to the root of the issue? And if so, what is the key to reversing this dangerous behavio?

First and foremost, we've all got to start with an admission of guilt. I for one am guilty of texting while driving, and I'm personally working on putting it to a stop altogether. I have backslidden several times, and have become frustrated and disappointed with myself after experiencing near-miss accidents here and therel.

I used to justify the action by thining it was okay for experienced drivers, because the law in Missouri says it is illegal for "novice drivers" (under the age fo 21) to text and drive. It's too bad the law doesn't cover the dense-headed adults like me, so my behavior continued and caused me to have a few potential mishaps.

After chastizing myself with a "what is wrong with you, stupid??? Why do you keep taking chances like this?", I would swear off texting and driving only to start up the behavior again, causing me instances of running over a rumble strip or brushing up against a curb.

The reason that I have not been able to make a once-and-for-all behavioral change is because I have not uncovered the root of the problem. Once I address the root of the problem, a permanent behavioral change can take place.

I firmly believe that I have identified root of the problem why so many commuters admit to texting-while-driving: we are far too busy, stressed out, behind on our schedules, and trying to do two things at once to catch up.

This is what motivates us to fill in the dead time while commuting by answering emails, sending text messages, and trying to "catch up" on these minor things before we arrive at our destination to deal with the stress of work.

The behavioral change that need to take place to prevent a possible fatal or injury accident from fooling with our smartphones is to look at the commuting time as a time to relax, decompress, and take relief from the stress of the day. Too many of us consider commuting as valuable captive time to "catch up" on things since we have no other distractions. But that can change.

Instead of looking at commuting time as "catch up" time for communicating, we need to implement new activities to pass the time while we are stuck in the car. It doesn't even matter how long or short of a commute you have. I only commute for 15 minutes one way each day, and I still use it as a "catch up" time to fool with my phone.

Here are a few ideas that you can use to change the bad habit of being on your smartphone while driving in the car, once and for all. Do this for two weeks straight, and a new habit will be formed. This will lesson the chance for backsliding. Fill that time with something definite, and it will stick. Here are the ideas for spending that "dead tim" in your car:

  • Use commuting time to decompress, de-stress, and relax by listening to soft music, meditiation tracks, a sermon, or self-help CD. View it as your daily scheduled therapeutic session.
  • Turn commuting time into your personal learning time. Get a book-on-CD series and learn about a topic that is important to you, or learn a new language. View your car time as your personal classroom time. Turn off your phone just as you would in a normal classroom.
  • Listen to National Public Radio each and every morning. Get caught up on events around the world, and enjoy all of the interesting cultural stories. Instead of turning on the news at home, save your commute for listening to the news.
  • Turn off EVERYTHING, radio included, and have a 15-minute "time of peace" each day so you can reflect on what you want to accomplish for the day. Use it as a time to clear your mind of clutter and worries, and just enjoy the peace and quiet. You will look forward to this time every day if you try it out.

The bottom line is, you have to create a new habit. Do something for two weeks straight, and you will have a much better chance of eliminating your need to text and drive. Instead of making a pledge to change your behavior every time you scare yourself into a bowel movement, try creating a new habit that has meaning.

Are you truly serious about making a new habit? Do you really want to avoid a potentially hazardous situation from happening when you backslide? Then put the icing on the cake by joining me in making one more change during your two-week habit forming time:


I am going to comit to doing this for a two week period. It's what I need to make sure that my change of habit is permanent. For all of you who know you need to make a change, I challenge you to join me in putting your smartphone junk in your trunk for two weeks in order to insure that your new habit is set in stone.

Place a comment in the Disqus comments section with your personal attestation that you will preserve and protect your two-week habit-forming initiation by putting your phone in the trunk during your commute. Let's see how many people will join.

Spread the word and save a life! Send this article to friends and family that you care about, and ask them to join in.

Big thanks to AT&T St. Louis Senior Public Relations Manager Katie Nagus for bringing this to my attention and encouraging me to spread the word!

Carlton Flowers
Technology-In-Trunk Advocate

For more information and to take the pledge for no texting-while-driving, head on over to the AT&T "It Can Wait" page by clicking the link or the picture below!