| | 09-24-2012, 12:07 PM #1
I've been using WP7 for about a year now and while there are certain things that I absolutely love about this platform, sometimes the Apple-like control and limitations kill me.
The SDK leaks have had some nice features for sure, but nothing in there wow-ed me so far.
I was hanging out with my friend who has a 2 year old crappy droid (Samsung infuse? Didn't even have ICS) the other day, and I wanted this hour-long mp3 file he had on his phone.
I booted up my laptop and he opened his file explorer on his phone, connected via bluetooth to my laptop and transferred the file over. It was awesome. No wires, no syncing, no BS. That thing is basically a mini computer. And it is a POS phone.
It would have been nicer if he could have bluetoothed it to my cell phone directly so I wouldn't even have to sync it with my laptop, but of course, no BT file transfer on Windows phone 7.
I moved away from Apple because of their restrictiveness on matters such as the above. I want my phone to act as a mini-computer (within reason) with as little restrictions as possible.
As of now WP7 is not even close to that. And really if they want WP as a whole to be successful they are going to have to step up their game in "what you can do with your phone" because none of the major players are developing apps for the platform, and will not until we hit 10% market share or more.
In fact, with WP offering such nice Office solutions it would be an absolute shame if the thing didn't function closer to an actual computer. Rather than just an Apple "controlled environment" device.
I want to see the following in WP8
-A file explorer that will allow us to bulk transfer our photos, music, videos, documents, or anything else to anyone else over any means. This includes transferring over bluetooth and/or NFC. This includes creating file folders with directories. Moving files from one directory to another. Etc. If they are going to force us into "Apple" mode where we can't manipulate anything, that = fail. My 4 year old BlackBerry Bold had a file explorer and that thing was basically a calculator.
-When I plug my phone into my computer I want it to be able to act as a USB mass storage drive. Zune is not the solution here going forward. Can't tell you how frustrated I was when I had some videos on my phone, connected to my computer and Zune automatically deleted them because they weren't present in my "My Videos" folder. I was travelling and needed these videos for the plane. And yeah it was only after that happened that I found the setting buried in Zune to not "automatically sync My Pictures/My Music/My Videos to your phone upon plugin". As far as I'm concerned Zune is a nice looking POS software that needs to be replaced ASAP.
-"Manly" looking tiles. My phone is not a toy, it's a tool to get sh*t done. **** the phone has the best mobile MS Office on it baked into the OS. I'm also a guy, not a chick. And therefore "baby blue" and other flourescent colors being the only option is just not appropriate. Grey, Black, White, and otherwise darker colored themes need to be offered, period. There's no excuse for that. And if someone like Joe Belfiore with his questionable sense of style is making these color decisions then he needs to be canned. Give me a break, this OS is way too good to be ruined by ugly colors.
-Folders for apps. The App list on the "second home screen" is decent but is tiresome after a while. Just allow us to create folders i.e. "Photo", "News", "Finance", where we can put similarily purposed apps inside as to reduce the amount of clutter in the App list. I mean there is already a folder/hub for "Games", why not let us expand that to everything else.
-A "notification" center is not really necessary but instead the "Me" tile should be repurposed for this. In fact, the whole name "Me" tile is generally dumb. I do not pin the "Me" tile to the home screen as it looks narcisistic to have a huge picture of yourself that says "Me" on your home screen. In fact, what is the point of the "Me" tile? To get notifications, check in, and post messages to FB/twitter. So perhaps the nomenclature is appropriate but I do not want my profile picture displayed on my home screen. Regardless this tile already fetches Facebook, twitter, and other notifications, and should be expanded to include all applications. I'm sure this is not the direction they are going to take, but really it should be.
So to summarize, in order for WP to succeed it really needs to strike a better balance between the "Apple" model (closed) and the "Droid" model (open). As of right now the restrictiveness is too much. It will be hard for me to consider WP, let alone recommend it to others, if I can't accomplish basic tasks that are well within the ability of a modern smartphone. These are powerful devices and should not be dumbed down ala Apple for the masses. There are intelligent people out there who want an alternative to Droid and Apple and who want a powerful device that will serve their basic computing needs on the go. People will buy WP8 if they can add features that make them truly powerful devices out of the box, and as a result App makers will start to pay attention and we'll finally start seeing some quality big-name apps here on WP.
Otherwise, I'm getting the next Nexus or praying Nokia adopts Android.