The Windows 10 Mobile update is a brilliant update to Windows Phone 8.1 created and launched by Microsoft in 2015. It is available for any user who would want to get it right now, but it will be rolling out to other phones this month. Coming fresh off the Christmas break, we thought we’d use this opportunity to not just talk a little more about the Windows 10 Mobile update, but also to ask out readers what they thought about it.
Our Windows 10 Mobile review here recognises the power and potential of Windows 10 but notes that it is held by back a serius issue known as things-not-working-as-expected. Even on the flagship phones, there is unwarranted battery drain, incidental crashes and random reboots. Windows 10 and all its innovations are the most future looking of all mobile OSes right now, and if Microsoft can just do that little bit more to tighten their OS up, it just may recover.
Windows 10 Mobile overall is a good update, but it is still beset with the issues of the previous OS. The app gap remains every so wide as spectres of Snapchat, YikYak and other apps beckon over to dissatisfied users. This looks set to change soon. Microsoft’s UWP program has been adopted by more and more developers at a faster pace since Windows 10 took off on desktop. Facebook and Twitter have promised to optimise their apps for Windows 10 Mobile soon, and the gap between Microsoft’s first party apps on Windows 10 and other platforms has been closed. There are also new party tricks like Continuum (detailed here) and Windows Hello (detailed in our 950 and 950 XL reviews) to stand out from the crowd on newer devices like the Lumia 950,Neo NuAns, and Acer Jade Primo. Microsoft has made a good start with Windows 10, now all they need to work on is sanding out the rough edges.
Stop bugging Gabe Aul
Asking for Windows 10 Mobile builds is a favourite pastime for Windows 10 Insiders now, but it is ridiculous now. New builds will be announced when new builds are ready, unless you really enjoy hearing “No new builds today” then stop asking or blathering on about broken promises.
— Gabriel Aul (@GabeAul) January 7, 2016
Official roll-outs starting soon
Of course, if you don’t want to be on the Insider schedule, Microsoft is rolling out new Windows 10 Updates for existing devices soon – most likely this month. After delaying the update approximately 4 months, it would be interesting to see if Microsoft still adheres to that “first list” or just sends out a wave of updates in a single go like they have done before.
On their support forums T-Mobile Germany has announced that the Windows 10 Mobile update for a number of handsets are imminent, adding it can take up to 2 weeks for the software to appear to Microsoft’s servers.
The update is available for the Lumia 535, 635, 640, 640 XL, 830 and 930, with updates also coming for the Lumia 950.
New Windows 10 Phones
As always, there have been new phones, announced phones and rumours of phones yet to be announced. We’ve reviewed the Lumia 950 and 950 XL though we came away slightly disappointed in the longer term as cracks appeared. We’ve also reviewed the very disappointing Lumia 550 for any one who is looking a bit under the top end. Of course, you can always hold out for the Lumia 650, though with the specs the way they are, you’re much better off getting a 640 and pairing it with a Mozo case for that extra premium feel.
In the land of other OEMs, Acer’s Liquid Jade Primo looks to be heading straight for the high-end market, the Alcatel OneTouch wants some of T-Mobile’s low-end goodness and NuAns Neo is the perfect mod-range phone (see Microsoft, Windows 10 phones don’t self destruct of you out something higher than a 210 in them). If only it was sold outside of Japan.
Overall, Windows 10 Mobile and the new Lumia devices are almost good, sometimes almost amazing. However, almost only counts in horseshoes and grenades, and Microsoft is going to need to work hard to make sure that they get as close to amazing as possible.