What's Wrong with Windows Phone 7?

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Tom Keating
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What's Wrong with Windows Phone 7?

windows-phone-7.jpg So everyone is gushing over how sexy the new Windows Phone 7 Series is. Microsoft has done a "reboot" of their mobile operating system and gone to an entirely new operating system. Sorry Windows Mobile fans, your old apps won't work on this new phone.

: "Forget everything you know about Windows Mobile. Seriously, throw the whole OS concept in a garbage bin or incinerator or something. Microsoft has done what would have been unthinkable for the company just a few years ago: started from scratch."

Gizmodo: "It's astounding that until this moment, three years after the iPhone, the biggest software company in the world basically didn't compete in mobile. Windows Phone 7 Series is more than the Microsoft smartphone we've been waiting for. Everything's different now."

So what's wrong with Windows Phone 7, other than the stupid name?

Background app support - Microsoft didn't give a clear answer. That probably means no. At least the iPhone can be jailbroken to run background apps. We'll have to see if Microsoft is as much a control freak as Apple.
VoIP support - Well without Background app support, you'll only be making outbound calls. No work whether VoIP is supported at all, but if I had to guess, I'd say yes. In this day and age, creating a mobile phone with no VoIP support is a non-starter.
Adobe Flash support - No. Currently Windows Phone 7 does not support Flash, but Adobe and Microsoft are working on it. That sucks. That probably means no YouTube support. Sheesh, even the older Windows Mobile 6.5 OS, which Microsoft has now dumped in favor of this Zune-based OS, supported YouTube. Kind of a step backward no? Although, the iPhone is able to play YouTube apps without using a Flash player. I think YouTube agreed to re-encode all of their videos in another format to support the iPhone and their QuickTime player. Though even my iPhone today still can't play some YouTube videos. I think YouTube takes their sweet time converting new videos to iPhone-compatible format. Now this assumes Microsoft can read the iPhone-compatible format.
Windows Mobile legacy app support - No. You have to ditch all the apps you've come to love (& hate) on your Windows Mobile 5/6/6.5 phone.
Speech dialing - I love speech dialing on my iPhone 3GS. It works the majority of the time on the first try. No mention of speech-recognition built into the dialer.
Carrier support - AT&T is their "premiere partner" in the U.S. Doh! That sucks. Ok, they are allowing other carriers, so not to worry. It's not an exclusive deal like AT&T & the Apple iPhone
Update (3/17/10):
Copy paste support: Microsoft said they are not going to include copy/paste functionality. How idiotic!

Windows Phone 7 now has multi-touch capabilities, but I hear the browser isn't much better from prior mobile versions. It's not as fast at rendering Web pages as Safari on the iPhone. Still, there is a lot to like about the Windows Phone 7 and I'm glad to see 2 strong competitors (Microsoft & Google) take on Apple, which will cause a race for more cool features, better performance, and a better user experience. I think Windows Phone 7 could give the iPhone a run for its money. Some might think it's too late to catch-up, but just remember the billion dollars Microsoft invested in the Xbox and everyone thought they couldn't catch Nintendo, Sega, and Sony. Now the Xbox 360 (2nd model) is the leading gaming console. Can Microsoft duplicate their success after this mobile operating system reboot??

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Whats isn't wrong with it, MS is trying way to hard with WP7. The UI is totally Fed up. What can i say Android will rule them all.

Microsoft need to sort out their act with this business of restricting file system access. On my WM 6.5 I have books and comics where I own both the paperback version and the electronic version. I would like to be able to copy these files to my device and read them in a single application without having to re-purchase them.

What about all my mp3's? Will I have to upload them to the internet before being able to download them to my phone again?

What about all my existing photos and videos, how will I be able to copy those up to my phone and view them with whatever app I choose.

As far as I'm concerned, this takes content dictatorship to the next level (Apples level)!

The only people that use phones that are so restricted (like the iPhone) are people like my Granmother who can't be bothered with tweaking her phone, using her phone as a file storage device or having applications that can access the file system.

It is pure evil that Microsoft think they can dictate the content I want to store on my own phone. Yes, by all means keep it simple for the majority of users, but please allow us power users to use the phone the way we choose.

Yes the UI on touch screen mobile devices needs to be simplified a lot from the days of WM, but I want a computer in my pocket that I have full control over. Not some dumbed down device that can only do what Microsoft says it's allowed to do.

If Microsoft are truly worried about security, then just popup a notice before any app can access the file system, warning the user that they allow this at their own risk. This isn't about security, this is about money and greed. Mark my words, watch what will happen to the iPhone as it eventually loses out to Android. Users will eventually realise that they want the freedom to use their phone however they want.

I really hope Microsoft get burned by this. I love developing for Microsoft, but these sorts of limitations are regressive, and really make me angry.

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