So what can an iPhone do that a WP7 doesn't

red grenadine

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Hey guys,

I moved over from an iPhone 4 to a Samsung Focus upon release. WP7 was lagging iOS there for a bit but while some people dismissed it (cough Paul Thurrott), the NoDo update addressed three key issues for me: copy and paste, seamless iphone-esque AT&T Wifi integration, and the darn Marketplace freeze bug.

I was thinking today that I can't really think of very much now that I'm missing from my iPhone and wanted to make a list of things and attempt to gauge when Microsoft will address them. So here goes:

Psuedo-multitasking - Mango
Custom Ringtones (I don't use them but some do) - Mango
Landscape browser support - Mango
Gapless music playback - ?
Music seek bar dragging - ?
Now playing playlist - ? (Did the iPhone have this? I don't quite remember)
Unified Email Inbox - ?
Clock Countdown Timer / Stopwatch - ?
Front Facing Camera (Never used it but again, some do) - ?
Wifi hotspot - ? (Read somewhere that iOS has this now? Extra charge I'm sure)
Good IM Clients - Mango

Anything blatant that I'm missing?

Personally other than the multitasking, the IM clients and the gapless music playback, the other missing items are very minor things for me. I've enabled the tethering hack so I'm covered there (and don't even have to pay extra like on my iPhone!).

It seems to me that yeah, WP7 is still behind, but it's not THAT far behind. Barring any groundbreaking features from the next revision of iOS (are there going to be any? I haven't been keeping good track), the platform can certainly pull close if not even up the race by the time Mango is released, and will also have some cool and unique things going for it as well (Skydrive/Wireless Sync/Live Tiles/Great UI).

That said, Microsoft needs to execute better on the updates going forward, which I think they will after learning from this go around. Hardware partners need to also put out compelling phones (none of this minimum required 8gb memory BS) which I also think they will (Nokia helps here). All in all, after some initial growing pains, I'm pretty optimistic on the WP7 platform going into the latter half of 2011 and into 2012. Thoughts?
 

jimski

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Think your Countdown Timer/Stopwatch should be addressed with Mango/Multitasking although they didn't directly address this at MIX. BTW, stopwatch works now, even w/o multitasking. But countdown would not work unless the app was directly behind the lock screen. Then again there is always Alarms for that.

You touched on a couple items unique to WP, but I would add Zune Pass and XBox integration. Note that you will never be able to compare platforms oranges to oranges as each will always have a few unique features that differentiate them. At the end of the day it still comes down to personal choice.

Sent from my HTC Surround using Board Express
 

Dagolara

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I downloaded a countdown app awhile back that runs under lock but its a bit limited only working in hour and minute increments (1:11 not 1:11:30 etc). If that works for you it's called Timer in my app list and it has picture of a green analog clock is the icon.
 

enahs555

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What do you mean by landscape browser support?
If I turn my phone (Samsung Focus, pre nodo) on its side it goes into landscape mode...
 

cdook

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Good list. Remember there are things WP7 does that iPhone doesn't. Not every phone will have every feature. I enjoy native Facebook integration, Zune Pass + streaming and Xbox Live.
 

red grenadine

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What do you mean by landscape browser support?
If I turn my phone (Samsung Focus, pre nodo) on its side it goes into landscape mode...

Yeah, but you don't have an address bar or other navigation buttons (Favorites, etc) like you do in portrait


Good list. Remember there are things WP7 does that iPhone doesn't. Not every phone will have every feature. I enjoy native Facebook integration, Zune Pass + streaming and Xbox Live.

That goes without saying, it's just that critics seem to love pointing out what WP7 lacks vis-?-vis its peers, and it seems like the platform will address the vast majority of those complaints later this year while offering a bevy of its own unique features.
 

Jay Bennett

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Now playing playlist - ? (Did the iPhone have this? I don't quite remember)

Depending on what you mean we already have this I believe, you can tap and hold any track and "Add to Now Playing", then when looking at the now playing screen you can tap the list of upcoming songs below the Album art and you see the list of tracks that have been/are to be played.

Otherwise great post, I'd love to see tap & dragging the music/video seeking bar, I have a feeling that will be in Mango as a User Experience improvement
 

dtboos

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Front Facing Camera API's are also going to be part of Mango, which means you'll see some OEM's building windows phone's with FFC's possibly later this year/early next year. My guess is at least one OEM will have a flagship device for Mango with a FFC.
 

red grenadine

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Yeah, but that's just not as precise as being able to go to a specific spot in the song. Minor thing but the iPhone has it and I'm pretty sure the Zune HD has it

Sent from my Windows Phone using Board Express
 

fernandez21

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Right now the only true advantage iPhone has is the support it gets in the form of 3rd party apps, accessories and integration. I think windows along with webos have matched IOS in terms of polish.

As for what else windows is lacking compared to IOS. Other tha what you mentioned add:
1. Stereo bluetooth support in video. This is a weird one, my Bluetooth stereo connects fine with my surround and plays music and audio podcasts perfectly, however when i play video it comes out threw the phone speakers. They really need to fix this.
2. Better html5 support and YouTube integration. In IOS if you come across video the web browser does a good job of pulling in the html 5 version or directly linking you to the YouTube player to watch that video.
3. Better html support in the email client. On the iPhone when i get an html email with lots of pictures and graphics it shows up in my phone just like it would on my desktop. However on my surround it shows up with all pictures and graphics blocked, i have to manually click to load the graphics everytime and even once those load the formatting isn't right most of the time, i have to completely zoom out to view it and then the text is too small read.
4. Back up app and system information. I just went through this as i had my surround swapped for a new one and i had to manually load everything back to my phone again. On my iPhone, i just restore from backup and 15-20 min. The new phone has all the settings, apps, text messages, contacts, favorites, song, and even saved games. Makes upgrading very seamless too.
5. flash support. My atrix plays flash perfectly, it is possible on these mobile devices don't believe the Apple hype about how bad flash is.
6. Folder support. Since everything is in a list if you download alot of apps you have to do alot of scrolling.allowing folders would help with this.
7. Well, this one is more of a personal preference, but i wish they would allow you to switch from a lost view to an icon and grid view. I just prefer that, but realize that going with the metro list view was Microsoft's way of differentiating from other os's out there, i just wish i could switch if i wanted to.

That's all i can think of right now off the top of my head. Don't get me wrong, the os is very polished and smooth and the onscreen keyboard is the best virtual keyboard i have used, but there is still some work to do to catch up on features as well as drumming up more app support.
 

snellim

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Unified email would be top on my list. I never realized how awesome unified email was until I switched from WebOs (Pre) to WP7 (HTC Arrive). If I could add a couple of small things to the list:

Ability to better control "live" tiles. I would love the control which contacts show up on the people tile. My local Pizza Hut doesn't need to be there, or my Dentist.

Universal search similar to WebOs. The search button should search the phone first and then use Bing as a default internet search.

I know, I am still a little bit stuck in WebOs mode...but it ROCKS! I read some OS reveiws just before I switched to WP7, they said WebOs was a little dated and WP7 is not quite finished. After making the switch I agree with both. Long live WP7.
 

eric12341

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can't switch between mobile and desktop view on an iPhony.
can't adjust camera settings on an iPhony
can't take HD videos or high resolution pics on an iPhony
can't natively stream any song on demand or download unlimited songs on an iPhony without paying for each one
can't play .wma files on an iPhony. u are somewhat forced to use the uncompressed Apple format which can take up lots of space .
u can't earn Xbox live achievements on an iPhony.
can't switch batteries on an iPhony
can't use any micro USB charger on an iPhony.

making this post was fun. im sure there are more.
 

starblade876

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Yeah, but that's just not as precise as being able to go to a specific spot in the song. Minor thing but the iPhone has it and I'm pretty sure the Zune HD has it
Actually, sequential fast forward/rewind is more precise than the slider. Like most precision tools, it's just not as fast (e.g., going from the beginning to approximately 3/4 of the song).

Anyway, something the iPhone can do is restrict you to one form factor... I trololol! :p
 

doublebullout

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can't switch between mobile and desktop view on an iPhony.
Not true. There are 3rd party browsers that can force desktop view, and of course you can do it by jailbreaking. Even without these tricks, the mobile and full view URLs are different for some sites. Just bookmark the full site if you prefer that view.
can't adjust camera settings on an iPhony
True, unless you jailbreak or use 3rd party camera apps. Of course, it should be pointed out that you can change the phone settings in WP7, but you can't save them.
can't take HD videos or high resolution pics on an iPhony
Not true. The iPhone camera takes 720p. The camera's sensor is 5mp, same as current WP7 phones. Not sure what a "high resolution" pic is, unless you're trying to say that 5mp on a WP7 device is better than 5mp on an iPhone.
can't natively stream any song on demand or download unlimited songs on an iPhony without paying for each one
iPhone doesn't have Zune Pass, true.
can't play .wma files on an iPhony. u are somewhat forced to use the uncompressed Apple format which can take up lots of space .
Not true. You can use either Apple's lossless uncompressed format, or you can use Apple's compressed format. Most of my music is in mp3, and believe it or not, that works just fine too.
u can't earn Xbox live achievements on an iPhony.
You can't earn Gamecenter achievements on a WP7 device. ;) I'm not an XBox user, so this is irrelevant to me. Obviously, one of the big attractions for WP7 is the excellent XBox Live integration. It's not too different from the advantage that Android has with excellent Google integration, or the advantage Apple has with excellent Apple integration.
can't switch batteries on an iPhony
True, but I've never needed to. I leave the house in the morning with 100% charge and routinely return home each night with 60% or more charge left. And that's with wifi turned on all day, bluetooth turned on all day, brightness set at a realistic level, push email turned on, and Gmail sync turned on. On every other phone I've tried (except a Treo or Centro), you have to be more judicious about setting up the phone for maximum battery life. Not with an iPhone.
can't use any micro USB charger on an iPhony.
Really? So what? OK, you can't use an Apple dock connector charger on any WP7 device.

making this post was fun. im sure there are more.
Your list above shows that your priorities for smartphone use are oriented around media usage, and primarily in a Microsoft-centered world. That's fine, and congratulations -- you're smack dab in the middle of the WP7 target demographic. WP7 fits your priorities better than iOS does. This doesn't make iOS a poor choice for everyone else.
 
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VernonEL

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Good Open Perspective

Not true. There are 3rd party browsers that can force desktop view, and of course you can do it by jailbreaking. Even without these tricks, the mobile and full view URLs are different for some sites. Just bookmark the full site if you prefer that view.
True, unless you jailbreak or use 3rd party camera apps. Of course, it should be pointed out that you can change the phone settings in WP7, but you can't save them.
Not true. The iPhone camera takes 720p. The camera's sensor is 5mp, same as current WP7 phones. Not sure what a "high resolution" pic is, unless you're trying to say that 5mp on a WP7 device is better than 5mp on an iPhone.
iPhone doesn't have Zune Pass, true.
Not true. You can use either Apple's lossless uncompressed format, or you can use Apple's compressed format. Most of my music is in mp3, and believe it or not, that works just fine too.
You can't earn Gamecenter achievements on a WP7 device. ;) I'm not an XBox user, so this is irrelevant to me. Obviously, one of the big attractions for WP7 is the excellent XBox Live integration. It's not too different from the advantage that Android has with excellent Google integration, or the advantage Apple has with excellent Apple integration.
True, but I've never needed to. I leave the house in the morning with 100% charge and routinely return home each night with 60% or more charge left. And that's with wifi turned on all day, bluetooth turned on all day, brightness set at a realistic level, push email turned on, and Gmail sync turned on. On every other phone I've tried (except a Treo or Centro), you have to be more judicious about setting up the phone for maximum battery life. Not with an iPhone.
Really? So what? OK, you can't use an Apple dock connector charger on any WP7 device.

Your list above shows that your priorities for smartphone use are oriented around media usage, and primarily in a Microsoft-centered world. That's fine, and congratulations -- you're smack dab in the middle of the WP7 target demographic. WP7 fits your priorities better than iOS does. This doesn't make iOS a poor choice for everyone else.

I am not an iFan, but this post was good. I appreciate the factual objectivity. It really just comes down to what people prefer. Simple.

I wouldn't say that my pick-up is "better" than your Corvette. They are in different catagories, serve entirely different purposes, and fulfill some people's needs better than others.

But... WP7 is the "best"!!!
 

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