[This Q&A is running in the print edition of The Seattle Times on Oct. 30, 2012.]
SAN FRANCISCO — After leading the engineering team that developed earlier versions of the Windows Phone platform, Terry Myerson was named to head the entire phone division a year ago.
As corporate vice president for Windows Phone, the Microsoft veteran is now responsible for development, marketing and other business functions of the platform.
He sat down for an interview Monday with The Seattle Times at the company’s launch event.
Q: Analysts say the key thing Microsoft needs to do with Windows Phone 8 is to emphasize not just how it’s different but also how it’s better. How is it better than the latest top-of-the-line Android phones and iPhone?
A: It really gets back to the three things we talked about in the event: Windows Phone really does bring you closer to the people and interests in your life.
It works best with your Windows devices and your Xbox — much better than other devices on the market.
And there’s killer hardware now — beautiful, thin elegant devices with amazing cameras and amazing sound.
Q: How do you measure success for Windows Phone? Is it by market share? Reviews? How will we know when the Windows Phone platform has arrived?
A: We know when people use Windows Phone, they love Windows Phone. Our goal is to get out there, tell our story and get Windows Phones into more hands and grow our user base.
Q: You once sent out a memo that noted that Windows Phones were among the best reviewed on Amazon.com but were not the best-sellers, saying: “We have an awareness problem.”
It seems that awareness problem hasn’t been solved yet. How do you plan to raise awareness for Windows Phone 8?
A: It all starts with the product and having this product that genuinely brings people closer to the people in their lives and the interests in their lives. Having killer hardware. Having Windows 8 out there with the same user experience and real scenarios where Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 work well together.
These things all come together now. You put all that together with us out there telling our story directly to consumers. I believe now is a time when people will learn about Windows Phone as a great option for them — as the best option for them.
[Continue reading the interview here.]