Oh Microsoft. Despite creating a stunning new mobile interface which prompted Gizmodo to tweet “Microsoft have just out-Appled Apple”, you had to go and spoil it all by calling it…Windows Phone 7 Series. The Windows Phone would have been fine. Or the 7 phone. Or maybe the Phone…that might finally put an end to every new gadget being prefixed by an ‘i’.
Jokes aside, I did not see this one coming. Microsoft really have created a BANGING phone OS which almost makes the iPhone look dated. Having a plethora of apps now seems messy; Microsoft have instead organised everything into ‘hubs’. Head to ‘People’ and you have your contact book, social networking, etc. ‘Office’ has all work related applications in one place. It’s all very well integrated and has obviously required a degree of lateral thinking.
Another welcome addition is the integration of Xbox Live. Despite only entering the ominously named ‘console wars’ less than a decade ago, Microsoft has really pulled out all the stops, with a huge legion of subscription paying gamers who are fiercely loyal to the 360 brand. It makes sense to utilise this huge market to its full potential by making the Xbox Live Marketplace mobile instead of developing a stand-alone app store to take on the behemoth that is iTunes.
Whether manufactures will produce hardware that is quick enough to handle this new OS is debatable. It will be a disaster for Microsoft if their ‘Windows Phone’ software is bundled on lacklustre handsets which do irreparable damage to their image by not being able to render the ‘hubs’ properly. I must say, I’m considering ditching the ‘iLife’ and going back to Windows…