IMHO the main reasons WP isn't doing well, roughly in order:
- Late to the party.
- "Windows"-anything isn't cool. It just isn't. (They had a moment of clarity with "Xbox").
- MS isn't winning any friends with the way Metro has been rammed into the desktop. Not sure why they are trying so hard to kill off their current cash cow. EDIT: The point is they are alienating existing users and devs so less of a halo effect.
- Developers are put off by the lack of roadmap and constant framework abandonment. They also need to drop the "JS is the new de facto language" bullcrap.
- Technical deficiencies in the platform is preventing some types of apps (already mentioned that ad nauseam...).
- To me the UI just doesn't look inviting. It looks unfinished, unpolished and clunky as if everything is a prototype. See this image where I pointed out how ugly and uninviting the typical WP apps are compared to iOS and Android.
1. That's a problem, but not necessarily an insurmountable one. The real problem, IMHO, is that Microsoft is acting like they're not late to the party and are trying to let the OS become successful on its own merits. They need to step it up a couple of notches and deliver way, way more than iOS and Android are delivering. There's time for letting the OS evolve naturally when phones are about the big three rather than the big two.
2. Is Android cool? I doubt the average Joe thinks "man, I'm getting this over an iPhone because damn, Kitkat is where it's at." I don't think "cool" matters as much as tech people think it does.
3. What average Joe even knows about "metro on the desktop"? Even if they're using Windows 8, are they really thinking "This design language and the way I'm forced to use it is terrible, I'm getting an Android phone."?
4. Agreed. Although it's been worse: there used to be a lot of JS-only samples on MSDN and such, but nowadays (and in most Build videos) they're nearly always using C#.
5. Agreed, see point one about kicking it up.
6. Again, does that really matter that much? There are a lot of awful-looking Android and iOS apps out there. I rarely see an app on Android and think "This looks so well-designed!" And yet, here we are with Android's market share.