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  #1  
Old 10-21-2010, 11:20 PM
Jason Dunn
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Default The Glow is Wearing Off: Good and Bad about Windows Phone 7, Part One

<p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com/resizer/thumbs/size/600/wpt/auto/1287697566.usr1.jpg" style="border: 1px solid #d2d2bb;" /></p><p>Now that I've had a few days to spend with the Windows Phone 7 prototype device,&nbsp;I'm personally having some of the WP7 "glow" wear off - that happens with every new gadget though, and I'm glad it does, because it allows me to be more objective about what works well and what doesn't. <MORE /></p><p>Something I've noticed today after making and receiving about 10 calls in total: I really miss having a hardware button for the phone. With every single Windows Mobile/Windows Phone I've had over the years, there's been a physical button to end the call, and a physical button to start a call. That speed of access has been important, especially when it comes to ending a call. When a call ends, I'd immediately take the phone away from my face, press the call end button, and put it in my pocket in one motion. When a call ends on Windows Phone 7, I take it away from my face, wait about 1.5 seconds for the screen to go from off to one, then tap the End Call button. It's not a very big button, and the fact that I have to wait for the screen to turn on is irritating.</p><p>This isn't a deal breaker, and maybe for one-button phone users (iPhone, etc.) this is normal, but for me it seems sub-optimal. I thought initially that there must be a better way - surely one of those three buttons re-maps to perform another function when the phone is in call mode - but, nope, all three buttons hold their original function. That's probably a good thing overall, but it does make ending a call more of a process than it should be - it doesn't feel fast or fluid.</p><p>Another thing I'm not fond of is how the reminder snooze function works - my reminders trigger 30 minutes in advance by default (that's something you can configure in Outlook), but often I don't need to leave until 15 minutes before some appointments. Ideally I want to snooze the reminder for 10 or 15 minutes, or even five minutes before the start of the appointment if it's a conference call. The snooze function is hard-coded to five minutes though, so every five minutes I have to snooze the reminder. The current system is too binary and simplistic - I'd like to see, at minimum "5 Minutes before Start" added as an option that would be remembered.</p><p>On the plus side, the integrated Bing search is just killer. I was downtown today, and wanted to stop at a local store called The Camera Store. I pressed the search button, typed in "camera store", two seconds later the results showed up (I was already on the Local view), I tapped on the first result, then tapped the phone number. That's stupid easy and incredibly fast. That level of integration is superb and shows off what happens when a company that owns a search engine and a mobile OS think hard about how they should work together.</p><p>Also worth noting: the integration of multiple sources of information for a contact (Facebook, Windows Live, Outlook) is very slick. When you look at the contact details, underneath some pieces of info - such as birthday - it tells you what the source of that info is. It's smart enough to handle duplications as well - somehow I was one day off for my wife's birthday in Outlook, but the info was correct in Facebook - so it shows me both. Nice!</p><p>That's it for now - more later...there's some ugliness with the Zune music client that needs some&nbsp;explaining.</p><p><em>Jason Dunn owns and operates&nbsp;<a href="http://www.thoughtsmedia.com/" target="_blank">Thoughts Media Inc.</a>, a company dedicated to creating the best in online communities. He enjoys&nbsp;<a href="http://photos.jasondunn.com/" target="_blank">photography</a>, mobile devices,&nbsp;<a href="http://www.jasondunn.com/" target="_blank">blogging</a>, digital media content creation/editing, and pretty much all technology. He lives in Calgary, Alberta, Canada with his lovely wife, his wonderful son Logan, and his sometimes obedient dog. He's thankful his MVP lead worked hard to get him a loaner Windows Phone 7 device for a week.</em></p><p><em></em><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com//ppct/auto/1240336793.usr1.gif" /></p><p><strong>Do you enjoy using new hardware,&nbsp;<a class="iAs" href="http://www.digitalhomethoughts.com/news/show/93798/dell-s-inspiron-mini-10-reviewed.html" target="_blank">software</a>&nbsp;and accessories, then sharing your experience with others? Then join us on the&nbsp;<a href="http://www.thoughtsmedia.com/reviewteam.php" target="_blank">Thoughts Media Review Team</a>! We're looking for individuals who find it fun to test new gear and give their honest opinions about the experience. It's a volunteer role with some great perks. Interested?&nbsp;<a href="http://www.thoughtsmedia.com/reviewteam.php" target="_blank">Then click here for more information.</a></strong></p><p><img src="http://images.thoughtsmedia.com//ppct/auto/1240336793.usr1.gif" /></p><p>&nbsp;</p>
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Old 10-22-2010, 02:45 AM
Brent372
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Just my .02 on the end call issue.
I use a BT headset and the answer / end button on it would be my way of hanging up.. although I agree that the lack of hardware buttons is a poor choice.
 
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Old 10-22-2010, 04:00 AM
Lee Yuan Sheng
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Dunn View Post
I really miss having a hardware button for the phone. With every single Windows Mobile/Windows Phone I've had over the years, there's been a physical button to end the call, and a physical button to start a call. That speed of access has been important, especially when it comes to ending a call.
I've been moaning about this for a while, if you've noticed. This isn't just WP7, it's just about every modern smartphone out there.
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Old 10-22-2010, 07:03 AM
Jason Dunn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Lee Yuan Sheng View Post
I've been moaning about this for a while, if you've noticed. This isn't just WP7, it's just about every modern smartphone out there.
It might not be so bad if the software were more finger friendly and the call screen appeared immediately after the call...I prefer hardware buttons, but I think it could be OK if the software were better.
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Old 10-22-2010, 02:47 PM
Paragon
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Originally Posted by Jason Dunn View Post
It might not be so bad if the software were more finger friendly and the call screen appeared immediately after the call...I prefer hardware buttons, but I think it could be OK if the software were better.
Once WP7 has been out for awhile and people start hacking it they may find a way to fix this. In Windows Mobile there was away to change the delay in ending a call. If memory serves me correct is was 2 seconds, and you could take it down to a half second if you wanted to.

Dave
 
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Old 10-22-2010, 08:38 PM
Jason Dunn
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Originally Posted by Paragon View Post
Once WP7 has been out for awhile and people start hacking it they may find a way to fix this. In Windows Mobile there was away to change the delay in ending a call. If memory serves me correct is was 2 seconds, and you could take it down to a half second if you wanted to.
I wouldn't hold my breath - Windows Phone 7 has more in common with a Zune HD than it does with any previous Windows Mobile phone. Although clever people do tend to find a way to accomplish certain things, so who knows. But I think the days of registry hacking and whatnot are likely behind us (for better or worse).
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Old 10-22-2010, 09:54 PM
Fritzly
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Jason Dunn View Post
I wouldn't hold my breath - Windows Phone 7 has more in common with a Zune HD than it does with any previous Windows Mobile phone. Although clever people do tend to find a way to accomplish certain things, so who knows. But I think the days of registry hacking and whatnot are likely behind us (for better or worse).
I am not so sure; the Zune was not hacked because very few people were interested in the hardware; hopefully Wp7 will see a broader acceptance. If so..... it will be hacked. The only question will be how long it will take.
 
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Old 10-22-2010, 03:17 PM
Janak Parekh
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Originally Posted by Jason Dunn View Post
It might not be so bad if the software were more finger friendly and the call screen appeared immediately after the call...I prefer hardware buttons, but I think it could be OK if the software were better.
... which is exactly what the iPhone does. It's fast enough (fraction of a second) that when you lift the phone from your ear, the screen's on by the time you get it anywhere near a position to press the button, and it's one massive touchscreen "End Call" button at the bottom. I've never, ever had trouble with this.

WP7 should be able to fix this in software, right?

--janak
 
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Old 10-22-2010, 05:54 PM
TheBigCheese
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Unhappy So Microsoft Fixed Local Search?

It's good that Microsoft got local search working but will they ever fix the iPhone and Windows Mobile 6.x versions? On both, a local search always shows places 2-5 miles away and sorting by distance always does nothing. You usually have to scroll down and click on "more..." several times to find a place nearby.

I'm in Philadelphia and wanted to find a post office. It onlyu showed places in New Jersey and after scrolling through several; pages, I found one a half mile away but in fact there is one only 2 blocks from where I was standing and it has been there for at least 25 years!

Too bad Microsoft never fixes bugs as I reported this over a year ago and frequently since. I wonder when they will stop updating the WP 7 apps and operating system???
 
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Old 10-22-2010, 08:39 PM
Jason Dunn
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Janak Parekh View Post
WP7 should be able to fix this in software, right?
Yes, this is definitely something they can tweak and adjust over time - and there's even a chance the delay is from the prototype hardware I'm using. Hard to say...
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