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10-24-2013 10:07 PM
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  1. chezm's Avatar
    I didn't say everyone did. I just use the xboxone as an example.


    Some do, some don't care at all.


    I agree, but as of today, PS4 is killing xboxone in preorder sales.
    I wasnt harping on your post, its actual a true statement...just expanding on the point made. Yes ps4 is beating out Xbone in places but not everywhere, my local EB was sold out of Xbone preorders a month ago while they still had tons of ps4 available. I'm sure ps4 will sell better than Xbone at launch...but I am more curious to see the 6 month sales figures after launch.
    10-21-2013 11:21 AM
  2. tgp's Avatar
    I'm the UI designer and developer at my company and its the joke of the company there that I like Microsoft and its products. Everyone thinks its so weird that a designer likes Microsoft.

    I just laugh back and make sure I show the weakness Apple and Google have when the discussion comes up. Now that Microsoft is finally making solid good looking UIs the joke is wearing off. And I made sure to point out the copy cat that iOS 7 is when it launched.


    That being said, until recently I've always thought Microsoft products were very uncool and often a nightmare for some of the simplest tasks. I was loyal mostly due to my being raised on Windows since my father is .net enterprise developer. I also knew in the long wrong the company had the power to do great things.

    Once WP came out, I became nearly 100% loyal to Microsoft. I knew they were on to a good thing and have been extremely happy with them continuing to unify their portfolio.

    Companies have reputations. A positive reputation is easy to lose and can happen over night. A negative reputation is damn near impossible to shake and will linger for years.
    I agree with some of your opinions and others I disagree with. I think that the Metro UI is visually appealing, but I find it very inefficient on a small screen. The tiles take up a lot of space. The app drawer, for example, is wasting premium real estate by using the entire width of the screen. On a larger screen like a laptop or even a tablet it's not such a big deal, but on a < 6" screen it is. Having a picture icon plus large font for readability is redundant, and wastes space unnecessarily. Only one or the other is needed, not both.
    10-21-2013 11:58 AM
  3. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    I agree with some of your opinions and others I disagree with. I think that the Metro UI is visually appealing, but I find it very inefficient on a small screen. The tiles take up a lot of space. The app drawer, for example, is wasting premium real estate by using the entire width of the screen. On a larger screen like a laptop or even a tablet it's not such a big deal, but on a < 6" screen it is. Having a picture icon plus large font for readability is redundant, and wastes space unnecessarily. Only one or the other is needed, not both.
    I don't know... IMO being able to pin almost whatever I want to the start screen makes it a lot more efficient than iOS. Android has its widgets that makes it more efficient, but iOS lacks behind. I can't even understand why Apple is so popular.
    10-21-2013 01:47 PM
  4. SwimSwim's Avatar
    I don't know... IMO being able to pin almost whatever I want to the start screen makes it a lot more efficient than iOS. Android has its widgets that makes it more efficient, but iOS lacks behind. I can't even understand why Apple is so popular.
    I agree, sure the apps are large, but you chose what gets displayed and what doesn't, so you can ensure only the stuff you care about the most is on your Start Screen, which I think is awesome.
    10-22-2013 01:26 AM
  5. spaulagain's Avatar
    I agree with some of your opinions and others I disagree with. I think that the Metro UI is visually appealing, but I find it very inefficient on a small screen. The tiles take up a lot of space. The app drawer, for example, is wasting premium real estate by using the entire width of the screen. On a larger screen like a laptop or even a tablet it's not such a big deal, but on a < 6" screen it is. Having a picture icon plus large font for readability is redundant, and wastes space unnecessarily. Only one or the other is needed, not both.
    I don't know what you mean by the image icon and the text. In the app drawer, the text is hidden unless you click the ellipsis icon "drawer pull."

    Metro language is best on a small screen. That "waste of space" you refer to is extremely important in user interface design. Believe it or not, packing a zillion features and elements onto a single screen is far worse than making some elements hidden or accessed through a second interaction.

    The more elements on a screen the more your eyes and brain have to work to decipher the content and how to interact with it. Think about it, if you have one button on a screen, its super easy to decide which button to interact with. But if you have 10 buttons, your brain has to review those buttons, what their function is, and then make the decision which button to click.

    Old websites and computer interfaces were all about how much content and features you could pack on the screen. More was better. However, usability studies and psychological analysis has actually shown that too much on the screen or too many choices causes what is called "choice paralysis." Breathing room helps your eye/brain separate chunks of content and make quick decisions when interacting with the content.

    I strongly urge anyone seriously interested in UI design or just curious about the design choices made in Metro, to look up usability studies and choice (decision) paralysis.
    squire777 likes this.
    10-22-2013 06:44 PM
  6. tgp's Avatar
    I completely disagree, Metro language is best on a small screen. That "waste of space" you refer to is extremely important in user interface design. Believe it or not, packing a zillion features and elements onto a single screen is far worse than making some elements hidden or accessed through a second interaction.

    The more elements on a screen the more your eyes and brain have to work to decipher the content and how to interact with it. Think about it, if you have one button on a screen, its super easy to decide which button to interact with. But if you have 10 buttons, your brain has to review those buttons, what their function is, and then make the decision which button to click.

    Old websites and computer interfaces were all about how much content and features you could pack on the screen. More was better. However, usability studies and psychological analysis has actually shown that too much on the screen or too many choices causes what is called "choice paralysis." Breathing room helps your eye/brain separate chunks of content and make quick decisions when interacting with the content.

    I strongly urge anyone seriously interested in UI design or just curious about the design choices made in Metro, to look up usability studies and choice (decision) paralysis.
    Yes spaulagain I fully expected a response from you. I would have been surprised otherwise! You need to realize that not everyone is a Microsoft fanboy that passionately embraces everything they send down the pike. I actually am a Microsoft fan myself in pretty much everything except WP. I make a living working with MS software, and I actually have several MS certifications. I do like WP too. I just feel that it isn't as good as Android or iPhone.

    I spend 5x longer getting to stuff on my WP than I do on my Android. And since my WP is my 2nd device I don't have anywhere near as much stuff on it. For example, the app drawer shows about 6 apps, since half the space is taken up with the letters that are useless. Since I know where everything is on my devices, I have no "choice paralysis." And I would wager that very few users do since they quickly become accustomed to where everything is on their device. Of course, if you grab a friend's Android you are going to face that, but that's because it's unfamiliar. Likewise, if they tried to use your WP, they would face the same issue.

    Your points are valid, at least in theory, and I agree with you. However, I do not feel that in real life it applies so much to a device with which you are intimately familiar. Since I use both Android & WP (& iPhone) side by side, if it were valid in real life on a my cell phone I think I would notice.
    10-22-2013 07:02 PM
  7. Usman Mubashir's Avatar
    Well, you are absolutely right. Here in my college it is norm for someone to have Android device. Some sinister guys have iPhone. But I saw no WP last year when I joined up. I got into the smartphone game and at once chose WP as the best for me. In my social group I have the privilege of being the most tech savy guy, so when someone wants a new phone, he asks me, and without thinking, I tell them to get a Lumia. Those who have some idea argue aggressively but thanks to some help from Nokia and Microsoft, I converted a dozen guys to WP and now see many Lumias in the college.
    Once in a while I get someone who knows pretty much, and argues that Microsoft is dying. My point is always the same: the ecosystem has been growing and growing for the past 2 years. They say there is no comparison in high spec, I tell them iPhone has poor specs but it beats every other smartphone out there and Windows Phone beats iPhone on many fronts (I say "all" if I can ;) ). then there is the app issue; I tell them WP has been growing so fast that it might soon surpass them ( I know thats over exaggerating but thats fair when they say the Galaxy S4 is best :p)
    Its just a matter of how calm i remain when hearing stuff like there is no customization on WP and it lags that I have been able to convert those guys who stuck to android from day one. They were in fact such Android fanboys that naming WP in front of them was turning me into a joke. But now they are waiting for the Lumia 525.

    I say, keep calm, and do all we can to convince others to just change their perspective about Microsoft, Nokia and Windows Phone. I am sure WP will over shadow both Android and iOS.
    10-22-2013 07:56 PM
  8. spaulagain's Avatar
    Yes spaulagain I fully expected a response from you. I would have been surprised otherwise! You need to realize that not everyone is a Microsoft fanboy that passionately embraces everything they send down the pike. I actually am a Microsoft fan myself in pretty much everything except WP. I make a living working with MS software, and I actually have several MS certifications. I do like WP too. I just feel that it isn't as good as Android or iPhone.

    I spend 5x longer getting to stuff on my WP than I do on my Android. And since my WP is my 2nd device I don't have anywhere near as much stuff on it. For example, the app drawer shows about 6 apps, since half the space is taken up with the letters that are useless. Since I know where everything is on my devices, I have no "choice paralysis." And I would wager that very few users do since they quickly become accustomed to where everything is on their device. Of course, if you grab a friend's Android you are going to face that, but that's because it's unfamiliar. Likewise, if they tried to use your WP, they would face the same issue.

    Your points are valid, at least in theory, and I agree with you. However, I do not feel that in real life it applies so much to a device with which you are intimately familiar. Since I use both Android & WP (& iPhone) side by side, if it were valid in real life on a my cell phone I think I would notice.
    huh? My response had nothing to do with being an MS fanboy. It refers to interfaces outside that of Microsoft products as well. Clean, Swiss Design inspired, user interfaces existed before Microsoft introduced Metro.

    Now that you describe it, I realize you are talking about the app list when you swipe from the home screen. From what you describe, you wouldn't see the alphabet jump links if you only have 6 apps. They don't show up until you have more than 40-45 apps.

    Also, if you only have 6 apps and don't like their names listed to the right, why don't you just pin them all to the start/home screen so you don't have to go to the list menu.

    I personally think the alphabetized list is a huge selling point for WP. I hate that on Android and iPhone you have to keep shuffling to find an app lost in the see of icons. With WP I just go to the list, hit the alphabetized link and jump to letter where the app is. Its much quicker than trying to find apps on my iPhone, especially when I have over as hundred apps installed.

    If you don't like the name written out to the right, how would you have them done? Tiled, just like the start/jome screen is? That seems redundant.
    SwimSwim likes this.
    10-22-2013 10:11 PM
  9. SwimSwim's Avatar
    huh? My response had nothing to do with being an MS fanboy. It refers to interfaces outside that of Microsoft products as well. Clean, Swiss Design inspired, user interfaces existed before Microsoft introduced Metro.

    Now that you describe it, I realize you are talking about the app list when you swipe from the home screen. From what you describe, you wouldn't see the alphabet jump links if you only have 6 apps. They don't show up until you have more than 40-45 apps.

    Also, if you only have 6 apps and don't like their names listed to the right, why don't you just pin them all to the start/home screen so you don't have to go to the list menu.

    I personally think the alphabetized list is a huge selling point for WP. I hate that on Android and iPhone you have to keep shuffling to find an app lost in the see of icons. With WP I just go to the list, hit the alphabetized link and jump to letter where the app is. Its much quicker than trying to find apps on my iPhone, especially when I have over as hundred apps installed.

    If you don't like the name written out to the right, how would you have them done? Tiled, just like the start/jome screen is? That seems redundant.
    Yeah, absolutely love the alphabetized list on Windows Phone, makes all your apps so easy to find and quickly jump to, even if they aren't pinned to your Start Screen! Just swipe right, bring up the alphabet menu, tap and letter and BAM! The app if right there. One last tap and it's opening up. It's the little things that really can make something stand out, this is one of those things.
    Laura Knotek likes this.
    10-22-2013 11:06 PM
  10. tgp's Avatar
    I'm basing my views on my personal experience. I didn't mean to say that I have only 6 apps. I have at least 45, since that's the magic number that enables the letters. What I meant was that I have a few apps that are the only one that start with a certain letter, or one of two. So displayed in the app drawer is the letter, the app, next letter, next app, next letter, next app, and so on. Only 6 apps are displayed in the screen at a time.

    Like I said, I know in theory at least you are correct, but in real life it doesn't work that way on a small screen. When I first got a WP I immediately loved the UI. But after using it I realized how inefficient it is compared to what I was used to. I still think it's more visually appealing than Android or iOS, but it falls behind in real world use. I get tired of tap, tap, scroll (sometimes multiple "pushes"), tap, tap, just to do the simplest things like toggling WiFi or finding stuff in settings. Settings is a whole issue in itself by the way. I know you can pin shortcuts like WiFi toggle to the Start screen, but then you soon have it full of dead tiles just taking up space where live tiles should be.

    I generally know where everything is on my phone. Yes, I have to look a bit for an app when I get its screen in the app drawer, but on my WP I also have to search for it when scrolling down the list. It's actually harder. Do I give the list a couple "pushes", or do I do a couple extra taps by using the letters? Till it's all said and done it usually takes longer than on my Android. And I have about 1/3 as many apps on my WP as on my Android. I can't imagine how much worse it would be if I had the same number of apps!

    I also question the reason behind lengthy WP animations. On my Nexus 4 I turned off all animations, and apps open instantly. I can be half done with what I'm doing on my Android till the WP animation would be done. Granted, since iOS 7 the iPhone is just as bad. What is the purpose of animations anyway? I thought they were to hide lag, but WP & iOS aren't supposed to have any! So why do they even have animations? They just waste time.

    You know what we should do? We should meet sometime and have a contest. Not one of these staged "Smoked by Windows Phone" deals. I mean real world scenarios where neither has any clue what's coming, and stuff we actually do in day-to-day use. That would be fun!

    Again, I don't want to discredit what you're saying. I know you are a professional graphic designer (I'm doing good to draw a recognizable stick figure!), and I agree with you in theory. But in my experience it doesn't hold out.
    10-22-2013 11:26 PM
  11. squire777's Avatar
    I guess people have different preferences so I should add that personally I find that looking for an app and opening it is a lot easier on WP than it is on Android. Not to mention that once you find your app and tap it to open there is always some lag on Android, even on the beefiest of phones.
    psudotechzealot likes this.
    10-22-2013 11:48 PM
  12. spaulagain's Avatar
    I'm basing my views on my personal experience. I didn't mean to say that I have only 6 apps. I have at least 45, since that's the magic number that enables the letters. What I meant was that I have a few apps that are the only one that start with a certain letter, or one of two. So
    Like I said, I than Android or iOS, but it falls behind in real world use. I get tired of tap, tap, scroll (sometimes multiple "pushes"), tap, tap, just to do the simplest things like toggling WiFi or finding stuff in settings. Settings is a whole issue in itself by the way. I know you can pin shortcuts like WiFi toggle to the Start screen, but then you soon have it full of dead tiles just taking up space where live tiles should be.

    I generally know where everything is on my phone. Yes, I have to look a bit for an app when I get its screen in the app drawer, but on my WP I also have to search for it when scrolling down the list. It's actually harder. Do I give the list a couple "pushes", or do I do a couple extra taps by using the letters? Till it's all said and done it usually takes longer than on my Android. And I have about 1/3 as many apps on my WP as on my Android. I can't imagine how much worse it would be if I had the same number of apps!

    You know what we should do? We should meet sometime and have a contest. Not one of these staged "Smoked by Windows Phone" deals. I mean real world scenarios where neither has any clue what's coming, and stuff we actually do in day-to-day use. That would be fun!
    UIs are always subjective to some degree. After all, some people still prefer the Windows 95 interface. Doesn't mean its better.

    I think WP provides users with both options 1) Tiled app launcher 2) Alphabetized List Launcher. Android and iOS only provide with one. So in this case I think WP wins hands down. If you don't like the list, then pin all your apps to the start screen. Voila, you have something identical to Android. For the rest of us that have more than a few apps, the alphabetized list is extremely powerful and useful.


    There are a bunch of 3rd party apps that open the native settings for various items. And most of them include live tile updates for connectivity etc. I have WiFi, Bluetooth, etc pinned onto my home screen. Its a one click action. Doesn't get any better than that.

    And I don't understand how you complain about having to click more than once to get to WiFi toggle, but then complain because a short cut "wastes a tile."

    Which do you.want? One click or several clicks?
    10-23-2013 02:13 PM
  13. Simon Tupper's Avatar
    I think that people will give it a try sooner or later. If not W8 then W9 since its due for 2015 or something like that.
    10-24-2013 01:31 PM
  14. anony_mouse's Avatar
    Well, you are absolutely right. Here in my college it is norm for someone to have Android device. Some sinister guys have iPhone.
    Sinister? Really? In what way?
    At first sight, that does seem a very 'sinister' comment.
    Last edited by anony_mouse; 10-24-2013 at 05:54 PM.
    10-24-2013 04:56 PM
  15. tgp's Avatar
    For the rest of us that have more than a few apps, the alphabetized list is extremely powerful and useful
    Maybe you aren't aware of this since you have an iPhone, but Android also has an alphabetized app drawer. And about 25 apps are displayed on each page, versus 12 or so at the most on WP. (Both of these numbers vary by screen size.) And again, most users probably aren't spending a lot of time hunting for apps, since we know where they are. The less taps & swipes to get to them, the better.

    There are a bunch of 3rd party apps that open the native settings for various items.
    To quote what I've seen so many times from WP fans, "But that's the beauty of WP vs. iPhone or Android. Everything is built in. We don't need apps to do stuff!" Even so, those "3rd party apps" don't actually toggle; they only open the native setting.

    And I don't understand how you complain about having to click more than once to get to WiFi toggle, but then complain because a short cut "wastes a tile."

    Which do you.want? One click or several clicks?
    Yes I complained about both. That's because both are a poor option. Here's where I'm coming from:

    Windows Phone so far has used Live Tiles in lieu of a notification center. This means that anything that has notifications must have a tile pinned to the start screen. If you have more than a few this soon becomes a problem, especially if you have some full sized tiles. If you make them small they don't show any more than iPhone's badged icons (which is also available on Android, although not natively). Not all the tiles required are visible without scrolling down if you have more than fits on the screen. Therefore, if you miss the toast, which is very likely, you may not see at a glance what just arrived. This is further complicated by placing shortcuts to settings on the desktop, which takes up valuable room. There's a 3rd option: quick toggles such as iOS & Android have. They take up no room on your screen. When you need them, a simple swipe brings them up. And they actually do the toggling, rather than just taking you to the toggle in the Settings menu. Android's actually do either. A tap will open it in the Settings menu, and a long press will toggle.

    But if the rumors are true, Microsoft evidently knows the live tile system needs help since they reportedly are adding a centralized notification center, and possibly with quick toggles. If Microsoft can get WP's beautiful UI equally as functional, I'm all in! For now, I'm happy using it as a toy.
    10-24-2013 08:15 PM
  16. spaulagain's Avatar
    ^I don't think the Live Tile system was ever meant to completely replace a notification center. That's why MS is working on it apparently.

    I agree that WP is missing some features that are on other platforms. But those features are not a failure of the Metro design philosophy on any screen size. They are simply missing features.

    WP users are fans because to them the very different and fresh user experience that WP offers is worth the lack of a few modern features.

    I know Android offers every feature under the sun, but the few times I've used it, I've found the experience very inconsistent and usually laggy. To me, no feature is worth that shotty experience.
    tgp likes this.
    10-24-2013 09:23 PM
  17. tgp's Avatar
    ^WP users are fans because to them the very different and fresh user experience that WP offers is worth the lack of a few modern features.
    Yeah I have no problem with that opinion! It's only that, an opinion. I like the different and fresh user experience too, but to me it's not worth what I would be giving up as far as features. Plus for the way I use a smartphone it's less efficient. The biggest drawback to me of Android is the battery life. That's one thing in which I wish my Android could match WP or iPhone.

    I know Android offers every feature under the sun, but the few times I've used it, I've found the experience very inconsistent and usually laggy. To me, no feature is worth that shotty experience.
    There again, I agree. At least I would have agreed a year ago. My first Android phone was a cheap prepaid and I've lived with it all. But since I've gone to Nexus devices, lag and instability are a thing of the past. I just checked the up time on my phone, a Nexus 4, and it's currently at 793 hours (33 days) and it's still lightening fast. In fact just today a coworker was watching me use it and he commented on how quick it was. Jelly Bean greatly enhanced the user experience, being smooth and fast. I can't wait to see what's coming with KitKat!

    But hey, the reason we have WP, iPhone, Android, Blackberry, dumbphones, big phones, little phones, white phones, black phones, red phones, is because we all have different needs and preferences! Nothing wrong with that!
    10-24-2013 10:07 PM
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