Windows Phone 7 Thoughts: Rolo

image The night is setting in over here in Saint Paul, so that means I have received my last thought email from the readers, and the final ones are to be posted tomorrow.

To me, Microsoft has removed everything that made Windows Mobile Windows Mobile. The people who like WinMo like it precisely because it ISN’T Symbian or the I-Phone OS or some feature phone OS on a non smart phone. Do you really think that someone like me who has chosen a WinMo phone specifically because of its open and infinitely modifiable nature is suddenly going to give all that up in exchange for the possibility of a slight increase in stability. If you need a phone that protects you from yourself by being so locked down you can’t change anything that could possibly reduce reliability, go buy a nice Motorola Razr. I’m sure it is wonderfully stable out of the box, and you’ll never have to worry about iffy 3rd party software causing problems. If someone like me wanted a WP7 type OS they would have bought an I-Phone or something running Symbian. Out of the box my HD2 was a fantastic device, but I didn’t buy it for the out of the box experience. I bought it because within minutes of firing it up I was able to modify it to add exactly the features and functions I want. One example, before I bought an HD2, I tried an Xperia X10 for a week. One of the first things I did was load a few AVIs and other video files on it to check out the beautiful screen. Alas, the X10 will not play Dvix files out of the box, actually you can’t even add support for Dvix by a 3rd party add on.  You need to convert all of your files to the MP4 format first before Android will play them. This required downloading a program to your desktop for file transcoding, then firing it up, waiting 35 minutes for a 45 minute video to process, then loading it on to the phone. My HD2 by comparison, can play any file type I’ve tried after spending 30 seconds installing Core Player (free) and just dumping the files as is onto my phone (by just dragging and dropping them onto the phone while connected as removable storage no less – try that with WP7).
With WP7, Microsoft has totally abandoned WM fans to go chase after I-Phone fans. For WP7 to really succeed it will have to be a better I-Phone OS than the I-Phone OS (or at least as good). Now keep in mind, a lot of the features MS have removed from WP7 are things that Apple has finally added to their OS after much badgering from their customers. (cut and paste, multitasking, etc.) And while we are on the subject of multitasking, I have heard many people on this site complaining that having too many programs running simultaneously on their WM devices will eventually slow it down. Are they claiming another OS is superior because it doesn’t let them multitask at all? That’s like claiming your car gets superior fuel economy because the engine doesn’t start. If running too many simultaneous programs slows down your WM device,shut one down. You’re still ahead of an OS that can’t MT at all.
My HD2 is my second WM phone (my first was a Touch Diamond, plus a Viewsonic V36 PDA). I have voted with my wallet. As it stands, I can’t see myself buying a WP7 device in the future. I have had the WP7 emulator running on my desktop for a while, so I do have experience with it (as much as is possible).
In conclusion, WM is a big box of Lego. WP7 is one preselected Lego model that has been glued together, and you are told how you are allowed to play with it.

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