Microsoft was on something of a high early last week, the announcement of the new Surface tablet had got them plenty of column inches and it had a big Windows Phone announcement to make, as it looked functionally leapfrog Google and Apple with its refresh of Windows Phone 7.5.
Having made the announcement Microsoft will probably reviewing possibly its worst PR disaster ever, whilst its principle partner Nokia its possibly facing bankruptcy in the face as a result.
And it was all going so well.
Where did it go wrong? Right about the time that Microsoft announced that WP8 would not run on any existing hardware. The rest of the announcement was drowned out by the sound of investors racing to dump Nokia stock.
Microsoft promised that WP7 devices would get the fancy new start screen of WP8 in an upgrade pack. That announcement right there gave all the Microsoft naysayers all the ammunition they needed to back up their claims that Microsoft would screw ita customers over.
There haven't been any official announcement about what else might be in 7.8, but the media have focused very much on the 'current handsets will not get an upgrade' message. New Lumia 900 buyers will be delighted to see that message all over their daily papers I'm sure. Even on Twitter WP7.8 massively out-trended WP8 as the multitudes of Apple and Android fans retweeted the bad news.
The message that Microsoft should have made central to the whole show was that current phones would get as many features of WP8 as allowed by the hardware. I'm assuming that this will be the case because otherwise Microsoft will have taken every single one of its platform's early adopters and made their phones obsolete. That just can't be the case.
Since the announcement Nokia's conversations blog has suggested that WP7.8 will carry more than just the Start screen update. Nokia has also promised I going and continuous updates for its phones, contrary to the message picked up by moat of the media.
Against the flow of the internet that's a lone voice that's going to be completely lost.
Microsoft needs to put this right with strong messages straight away, or risk killing ita mobile platform dead, just as its starting to signs of life.