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Prime Day 2018
  1. renjith p george's Avatar
    At some point or the other we would like to customize our start screen in a brighter fashion. As of now WP users can customize the start screen by adding different colours to the tiles, rearrange the size and also add an image in the background.

    Should there be some other innovative ideas to enhance the start screen experience ?

    Why cant we have the background option like in desktop start screen? Like, tiles above the wallpaper without breaking the images by the tiles.

    Also the action centre seems to be pretty basic. Anyway it is inspired from other ecosystems. Then why cant Microsoft incorporate more features to the action centre? We can add a swipable actions in the top of the action centre so that more actions can be viewed.
    10-15-2014 04:18 AM
  2. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    Maybe W10 will offer better flexibility. We don't know fully what's coming.

    Nothing wrong with speculating but everyone wants to keep turning WP into some form of Android phone. No one seems to appreciate it for what it is.

    Kind of sad.
    S640 and raycpl like this.
    10-15-2014 04:29 AM
  3. pmhgeneral's Avatar
    Using clear transparent tiles you can have different backgrounds
    10-15-2014 04:30 AM
  4. a5cent's Avatar
    We've had this discussion about backgrounds many times before. I'm not sure what your take on the issue is, but IMHO it's firmly established that trying to shoehorn an Android/iOS approach to backgrounds onto WP is a bad idea for various reasons, which I don't want to rehash here. For WP this idea is classic "form over function", the opposite of good UI design.


    Your larger point I agree with however. More UI personalization options are very much desired... as long as they don't negatively impact usability!


    I'm not a huge start screen folders fan. I'd like them more if we had the option to keep them open, as I find the folder header would make for a nice visual grouping mechanism.


    I'd also like the OS to force app developers to give us more app icon and colour options. For example, I think the ability to choose a monochrome icon with a transparent live tile should be mandatory for every WP app. I'd also like the ability to turn any transparent live tile into an opaque live tile using any accent color.


    Alternatively or additionally, WP might allow users to replace any app icon with a custom monochrome icon of their own choosing. Combine that with the ability for the community to upload icon packs onto MS servers, from where users could browse and mix & match the icons they'd like to have their apps use, and I think we'd have gone a long way towards engaging the community in WP's start screen design and allowed for more personalization.


    In general, I think the look of our start screens are still (even with transparent tiles), to much under the control of app developers. The varying icon styles and color schemes make many start screens look like nervous app advert billboards, rather than a UI with a homogenous and cohesive design of our own creation.
    Last edited by a5cent; 10-15-2014 at 05:48 AM.
    10-15-2014 05:25 AM
  5. N_LaRUE's Avatar
    I think people are obsessed with having total control of what their phone should look like.

    I don't mind the options being there but I agree with a5cent that there should be a usability factor. I'm not a fan of the folders, I'm not into putting every app on my start screen like some people and I think the implantation is a bit yuck.

    I think having the ability to have a consistent colour for all tiles would be nice but I'm not against having app specific colours either. Options are fine. :)

    As for the notification center, it is only at it's preliminary stage. We don't know what's coming fully.
    a5cent likes this.
    10-15-2014 05:39 AM
  6. renjith p george's Avatar
    If I decide to keep only phone, messaging and IE tiles in medium size on start screen, the rest of the screen space remains black / white (depends on the theme). Cant this be avoided by letting the background be a an image instead of white or black theme?
    The wallpaper we add bis only for the tiles. Just like a5cent said it doesn't look good wen half of the tiles don't have transparency and others are transparent.
    os built in apps tiles can be enhanced. Like an ability to control the music track withing the Xbox music tile will be good. As in in a larger size tile of Xbox music, the tile should be interactive with pause/play, next/previous on tile buttons.

    Criticisms are welcomed :)
    10-15-2014 06:14 AM
  7. a5cent's Avatar
    I'm not a fan of the folders, I'm not into putting every app on my start screen like some people and I think the implantation is a bit yuck.

    Yeah. It's a bit "yuck".

    I also don't understand why some people insist on pinning every app to the start screen. It's far more usable if you pin only those 10% of apps you use 90% of the time. IMHO MS would have done better if they had instead provided filtering (show only what is not pinned) sorting and folder/grouping features for the apps list rather than start screen folders, thereby streamlining the 10% scenario where you want to launch a rarely used and unpinned app.

    I'd also have appreciated if each entry in the apps list included visual queues, signaling for each app if it:
    -is already pinned
    -supports notifications
    -supports dynamic or static live tile content

    I think that would have been more in the spirit of WP rather than the iOS/Android inspired folder solution we got, through which the live tile functionality of contained apps is lost. The folders themselves also don't look very pretty, particularly if they contain icons using unmatched/conflicting colour schemes. Still, I think MS did as good as can be expected with such a uservoice feature request. If we must cater to iOS' and Android's way of doing things, I can't think of anything better.

    One last thing. I think it's fine for people to "obsess" over the look of their start screens. These are very personal devices after all. Some say they are extensions/expressions of ourselves. I think the start screen should be seen as a slate that is very functional, but also lets people express their own creativity and esthetical style to a far greater degree than it currently does.
    10-15-2014 06:49 AM
  8. a5cent's Avatar
    .
    OS built in apps tiles can be enhanced. Like an ability to control the music track withing the Xbox music tile will be good. As in in a larger size tile of Xbox music, the tile should be interactive with pause/play, next/previous on tile buttons.

    I think MS agrees with you on this. I hear they are already working on this ability, wich will be something any app can do, not just built-in apps.

    I agree with your other points too, except I don't think the start screen you described is realistic. I've seen hundreds of start screens, and none of them use only three apps. Most use at least a few dozen. I think designing features for such an unlikely scenario would do little but waste MS' time.
    10-15-2014 06:59 AM
  9. renjith p george's Avatar
    I was just giving an example to explain the black or white coloured empty space when less tiles are there in start screen.

    Lets wait for wp10 and see how much we can get excited :)
    10-15-2014 08:28 AM

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