Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Windows Phone 7

Over lunch I've watched the keynote for Windows Phone 7 and some other review videos. I have to say it looks nice but I dont think it's for me. Now my opinion is flawed because it is formed without actually using a phone so I could be wrong but I have to say the videos make it look a bit busy and I'm not 100% fond of the tiles design.

The tiles are an interesting idea but watching the demos there were animated icons with pictures changing as the presenter discussed the screen. Too many things moving and catching the eye. Also the screen is big yet there seemed to be lots of empty space, why not use smaller tiles and fit more on the screen? Part of the UI design is to cut off headers, so on one screen"games" has half its 's' cut off and as you scroll across the 'g' goes off the screen to the left. Why? Also is the font meant to be that big? It uses up a chunk of screen that could be used for other information. It is highly possible those are default settings that could be changed by the user. I'll have to look at more reviews tonight and see what other people say.

I do like the design of Outlook and other built in apps which look clear, easy to use and nicely integrated but I'm not really keen on the idea that that thirdparty apps use the standard look and feel. I like the fact that on my iPhone my facebook app looks like facebook and my twitter app looks like twitter. If all the apps looked the same it'd get boring. I wonder if that is also something that can be changed? If I install an app would I be allowed to select the theme to use?

Funnily enough they didnt implement copy & paste yet, same as Apple when they first launched the iPhone and Apple got lots of grief for that. I guess that is a difficult enough problem to solve properly.

All that aside it's a great addition to the market. Succeed or fail it's good to see Microsoft at least trying to do something in the market and it's not just another clone of the Apple interface. Choice is good and some people will love it. If nothing else it might push Apple to innovate a bit more on their interface.

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