Bye Cortana

After supporting Microsoft Windows Phone for several years on a Nokia 930 and then a Nokia 950, I have to say the last month was hard.  Microsoft released a couple of bad phone updates?  Which crushed my phone.  Then last month they announced they are exiting phones and abandoning those who own one (did they destroy the users phones that bad…better to pack it in then fix it??).  Or at least that is how it appears as there is no longer updates, fixes, or new products coming (unless you count the ongoing rumours of a Surface Phone, which likely will go the same way as the Windows Phone unless Microsoft changes their attitude).

A quick summary of the key things that all happened in October 2017 after the last insider update:

  1. Windows Live account used to activate the phone and not changeable after activating the phone and my Office 365 account using same email resulted in a conflict (which did not exist before).  My Office 365 account got dropped off the phone, and bringing it online again as an Exchange account was not possible – on going errors about “Account already exists”.  Not only did I lose Exchange features, I lost my calendar and ability to view and edit it.  I had to add my email back in using SMTP settings.
  2. Text messages started doubling up on wrong identities.  Had to close out the text app and re-open it to see new messages.
  3. One Drive suddenly doubled up the synced folders (that’s a lot of data)
  4. Notifications failed to appear.  That’s gggrreeeeaatttttt.
  5. Outlook tiles linked to email accounts started cross linking  (and even after fixing it, they would cross link randomly again).  Had to manually switch between my 7 email accounts from different companies.
  6. Camera suddenly taking blurry pictures and failing to always focus.  it ran perfect until the update.

Needless to say, I was inoperative and this is my main business tool.  It is my assistant, my manager, my organizer, my billing tool, my communication device, and with a schedule running two companies almost 16 hours a day, 7 days a week…being without critical features and reliable data was not an option.  I will miss you Cortana, you were the best assistant ever (digitally anyways) for the last few years.  May you find happiness back in your gaming realm.  I will now refer to you as my “ex” and you will get all the love one would expect after leaving me high and dry.

Now, on to my new fling Siri.  This iPhone X is crazy similar (hooray!!)  being the same size, same thickness, and functions almost the same.  Wireless charging, no home button, swipe options, tab at top, high end cameras, etc.  Love it.  What do I draw from this?  Apple recognized that the Nokia 950 was simply amazing, and decided to run with it.  Microsoft had a winner, they just didn’t give it enough time and budget to catch on.  This seems to be a pattern sometimes at Microsoft lately, abandoning good things too quickly or when the going gets a little tough (Access web apps anyone?).

Summary:  I think I can adopt and love this iPhone even as a serious evangelist for Microsoft.  Don’t get me wrong, I love Microsoft products and won’t abandon them just because they totally dropped a great product at the wrong time…but that’s my position.  I hear much different attitudes in the public space where they are not so quick to stay supportive and have moved over totally.  This is costing me many hours to transition my data and work space away from a Microsoft mobile device to Apple.  That has significant cost to me.  However I believe that the device does not decide the platform loyalty.  My laptop still stays Microsoft.  Till death do us part on that one.

Off to figure out how to move my music into my iTunes account.  and my contacts.  and my emails.  and one drive.  and Outlook.  and OneNote.  hmmm…..going to be a long week.

@Apple, if you are reading this:  please add a TILES for email option.  Microsoft nailed that one.



Jeff Shirley

Jeff Shirley

Founder & CEO
Jeff brings over 27 years of experience to the table, along with numerous awards, certifications, and real-world implementations.  His database solutions are currently running in industries including government, mining, agriculture, finance, education, science, research, non-profits, and healthcare businesses around North America and serve thousands of users day to day.  Jeff is a five-time MVP Award recipient for Microsoft Access, acknowledging contributions to community projects, evangelism, and educational outreach on Microsoft technologies.  Today there are less than 50 Access MVP’s worldwide. While Jeff focuses day to day on business management, IoT development, IT integrations and design, database architecture or other typical complex tasks, he also is a co-owner of Blue Heron Gardens, a commercial apiary running over 200 beehives.  Fresh honey is a small perk for many of our clients!

Mitch Redekopp

Mitch works with our clients day to day ensuring web development and IT projects are done to exceed customer expectations.  His background includes formal training in IT, Microsoft and CompTIA certifications, real-world business experience, and a true dedication to ensuring clients receive timely and professional support on their projects with Rivercity Technology Services.  Given the most difficult requests for IT solutions, Mitchell can assist our clients in finding a path to the best options which deliver results for our clients.  Mitchell is an avid soccer player and Manchester City fan, be sure to talk soccer with him when you can.