As I’ve blogged before, even though you can buy a Windows Phone 7 handset from mobile operators here in the Netherlands, there are at least a couple of things to be aware of:
- The phones do not yet support the Dutch language (only English, French, German, Spanish and Italian are supported) – and you won’t be able to upgrade your WP7 phone to Dutch (or other additional languages) when it becomes available.
- Even though the Zune Marketplace is available here in the Netherlands, it is only for renting videos – you can’t use it to download/buy Apps for your phone.
Since at least January, the WP7 web page at Microsoft Nederland has been saying:
- Nederlandstalige Windows Phone 7 toestellen komen medio 2011 beschikbaar.
(Dutch language Windows Phone 7 handsets will be available mid-2011)
I had also assumed that at that point the Dutch Zune Marketplace would be opened up to WP7 Apps. We had a false alarm last week when the Marketplace suddenly had an Apps placeholder appear for a day or two before it disappeared again.
However, it appears as though “mid-2011” is going to slip until at least the Autumn. Why? Because yesterday at the day 2 Keynote session of MIX11, Joe Belfiore (Microsoft’s Corporate VP, Windows Phone Program Management) stated that both the availability of additional languages (including Dutch) and the addition of WP7 Apps to additional Marketplaces would not occur until the Fall (Autumn), when the “Mango” update would be available. Here’s the language slide he used:
(“Hallo mensen” is Dutch for “Hello, people”)
And here’s the slide for the Marketplace expansion, which here includes the Netherlands:
Both of these items were tied specifically to the availability of the Mango update by Belfiore, and he stated “Fall” as the timeframe.
So, once again, Microsoft seems to be shooting itself in the foot by raising expectations (mid-2011 – Microsoft Nederland) and then not delivering on them (Fall – Belfiore). As I said before, I think I’ll be sticking with my trusty Nokia dumbphone, and at this rate, I think I’ll still be using it a year from now.