While Microsoft has mostly focused on Windows 8.1 at it Build developers conference, the company also snuck in a few sessions on Windows Phone along the way. In an interview with The Verge on Wednesday, senior Windows Phone product manager Larry Lieberman shared the company’s perspective on Windows Phone 8’s progression.
“We think we’re solidly the third ecosystem right now,” says Lieberman. “That’s a huge announcement in some respects.” In fact Windows Phone overtook BlackBerry in May, but it’s still very much a two-horse race with Android and iOS dominating.
Lieberman says he isn’t worried about BlackBerry, “I don’t think they can bring to the table some of the things we have,” he says. “The fact like we’re delivering across such a different set of price points to such a large audience.” Low price points have been a big piece of Nokia’s influence on the Windows Phone platform. The pair have teamed to push the OS down to low-cost devices.
Lieberman remarks that Microsoft isn’t comfortable in third place, and he believes that Windows Phone is “growing faster than anyone else right now.”
Windows Phone growth currently seems to be restrained by Microsoft itself, as during this week’s Build event there haven’t been any core platform announcements, or mention of any upcoming new features. Lieberman also wouldn’t comment on a recently leaked handset running an early version of Windows Phone 8.1.
Microsoft still faces the hurdle of getting developers to publish apps for the still fledgling platform. Liberman joked, “it’s chicken and egg, so we need to create the bionic chicken.”
Still, at the end of the day, Microsoft can loudly proclaim: “We’re number three! We’re number three!”