Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 9th Oct 2013 21:47 UTC
Windows

Paul Thurrot has a number of rumours up about Windows Phone 8.1. Two stand out to me.

Where GDR3 is widely expected to support 5- to 6-inch screens, 8.1 will supposedly support 7- to 10-inch screens as well. This obviously infringes on Windows RT/8.x tablets, so it's not clear what the thinking is there.

So, Windows RT will become even more pointless than it already is.

Aping the iPhone navigation model, Microsoft will apparently remove the Back button from the Windows Phone hardware specification with 8.1. The Back button just doesn't make sense, I was told: Users navigate away from an app by pressing the Start button and then open a new app, just like they do on iPhone. And the "back stack" is ill-understood by users: Most don't realize what they're doing when they repeatedly hit the Back button.

This I am not happy with. The back button is my main navigational input in both Android and Windows Phone, and I miss it dearly in iOS.

I'm just hoping on performance improvements, still my biggest issue with Windows Phone. I used my HTC 8X for a few hours today, and I was stunned by just how slow everything is compared to Android 4.3. Of course, application quality is another huge issue, but there's little Microsoft can do to convince developers that their Windows Phone applications are more than just side projects done between serious work on Android and iOS.

Order by: Score:
back button gone
by bnolsen on Wed 9th Oct 2013 22:26 UTC
bnolsen
Member since:
2006-01-06

I have to admit I rely on having a back button as well. The ZTE open doesn't have a back button and I really really miss it.

Instead of pushing one button to "go back" now they'll require a user to entirely bail on an application and go hunt and peck to bring it back up again. Not exactly efficient. I know some applications have back buttons themselves but the ones I've used have them in sort of strange places and the button is typically way too small.

Reply Score: 6

RE: back button gone
by thulfram on Fri 11th Oct 2013 22:41 UTC in reply to "back button gone"
thulfram Member since:
2013-10-11

I just got a ZTE Open (Firefox OS) phone also and noticed that it doesn't have a back button either. Some of the apps give you a back arrow at the upper left, but that's not the same.

Seeing as I was only three weeks ago playing with an iPhone, I could figure out how to do it easily enough, but it does seem to require extra steps.

When in doubt, follow Apple. :-)

Reply Score: 1

Comment by stabbyjones
by stabbyjones on Wed 9th Oct 2013 22:36 UTC
stabbyjones
Member since:
2008-04-15

I think making RT more pointless is the intention.

Reply Score: 3

RE: Comment by stabbyjones
by Bill Shooter of Bul on Wed 9th Oct 2013 23:29 UTC in reply to "Comment by stabbyjones"
Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Windows RT is a great idea, poorly implemented. The right way to do this kind of migration would have been to deploy the Windows RT API years ago, making it attractive to develop for and architecture independent. Then when you have a stable of applications, flip the switch and you have a load of ready applications for your new platform and all the older stuff has already been ported.

Of course an emulator would help too, or Mac Os style fat binaries, but going from a more powerful to a less powerful system makes those more difficult.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones
by jared_wilkes on Thu 10th Oct 2013 00:59 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by stabbyjones"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

The right way to do this kind of migration would have been to deploy the Windows RT API years ago, making it attractive to develop for and architecture independent.


Yes, time travel can occasionally prove useful when available as an option.

Reply Score: 6

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

True. They screwed up their best chance at windows RT in 2004-2005 or so. Or perhaps the NT 4.x days when they actually had multiple architectures working, but without a plan on how to run the same software on all of them.

Or the early windows CE days where you had to compile for Arm and MIPS separately.

Or when Java was released, demonstrating how to do a single binary that worked on multiple architectures without a recompile.

Reply Score: 3

RE[4]: Comment by stabbyjones
by jared_wilkes on Thu 10th Oct 2013 15:19 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Comment by stabbyjones"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

So, just to be clear: you went from saying Microsoft had a great idea to saying they were fcked a decade ago? Am I following that correctly?

Reply Score: 1

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

I'm saying it was a great idea that they should have laid the foundation for years ago. They were presented with the problem over and over again, and instead of addressing it properly they ignored it. If they hadn't ignored it, windows rt would be a great idea.

Reply Score: 3

RE[6]: Comment by stabbyjones
by jared_wilkes on Thu 10th Oct 2013 23:11 UTC in reply to "RE[5]: Comment by stabbyjones"
jared_wilkes Member since:
2011-04-25

A great idea at the wrong time does not remain great. It's simply too late.

Reply Score: 2

Bill Shooter of Bul Member since:
2006-07-14

Depends on your philosophical standpoint. Is my great idea for product X, not great because I lack the resources to implement it?

For better or worse, a patent is still valid without needing to supply an implementation of it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones
by ze_jerkface on Thu 10th Oct 2013 17:05 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by stabbyjones"
ze_jerkface Member since:
2012-06-22

The right way to do this kind of migration would have been to deploy the Windows RT API years ago, making it attractive to develop for and architecture independent.


What they should have done is make an architecture independent framework that is also language independent. They could call it .NET or something. They should have also created a Win32 subset to make mobile porting of existing Windows applications easier, maybe call it WinMobile or something. Then they should have hired a monkey to run Windows that ignores all previous work and demands a new API even if he can't explain why. Then they should have deleted technical questions from developers regarding the need for a new API to make the monkey look better.

That's what they should have done. They also could have doused the development division with gasoline and then lit it on fire to get the same result as the monkey plan.

Reply Score: 1

RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones
by lucas_maximus on Thu 10th Oct 2013 18:32 UTC in reply to "RE: Comment by stabbyjones"
lucas_maximus Member since:
2009-08-18

Nobody would have used it.

I seen devs regularly ignore compiler warning like "THIS IS OBSOLETE AND WILL BE REMOVED NEXT VERSION" or the clocks on the production servers aren't even in right timezone.

You are assuming that people are proactive. Unless they are forced in one direction most devs won't do it.

Reply Score: 2

RE[3]: Comment by stabbyjones
by ze_jerkface on Thu 10th Oct 2013 20:04 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Comment by stabbyjones"
ze_jerkface Member since:
2012-06-22

Especially when they don't have a strong case which is what happened with WPF.

When you have existing code bases built against stable APIs there has to be numerous motivating factors for migration that have clear economic benefits, a shiny new API with a few trinkets isn't going to cut it.

Reply Score: 2

No back button?!
by LaceySnr on Wed 9th Oct 2013 22:43 UTC
LaceySnr
Member since:
2009-09-28

The back stack is one of my favourite features of WP8, sure I hit the start button when I need to launch something new, and then when I want to get back to where I was... guess what I press!

Reply Score: 2

RE: No back button?!
by darknexus on Thu 10th Oct 2013 00:22 UTC in reply to "No back button?!"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

The back stack is one of my favourite features of WP8, sure I hit the start button when I need to launch something new, and then when I want to get back to where I was... guess what I press!

I don't know about WP but it's the only feature I genuinely miss going from Android to iOS. Without the back button and with the rather cluttered launcher system iOS has, going from one app to another feels like running around in a circle.

Reply Score: 2

RE: No back button?!
by WorknMan on Thu 10th Oct 2013 00:30 UTC in reply to "No back button?!"
WorknMan Member since:
2005-11-13

The back stack is one of my favourite features of WP8, sure I hit the start button when I need to launch something new, and then when I want to get back to where I was... guess what I press!


But hey, the back button confuses iTards, so they gotta take it out.

The war on power users strikes again.

Reply Score: 6

Leave my back button alone...
by Dano on Wed 9th Oct 2013 22:47 UTC
Dano
Member since:
2006-01-22

And also add a forward button. Back button works great why mess with a good thing. WP8 slower than Android...I see just the opposite on my 925. Can't wait to check out Cortana. And yes RT is going to be depreciated and WP is going to run tablets in the future...on both ARM and Intel.

Edited 2013-10-09 22:49 UTC

Reply Score: 2

RE: Leave my back button alone...
by cdude on Wed 9th Oct 2013 23:09 UTC in reply to "Leave my back button alone..."
cdude Member since:
2008-09-21

Android made some huge performance jumps in 4.2 and 4.3. When talking performance its not "the Android" but pre and post JB. WP 8.0 has some way to go to catch up but then that was the very first release. Lets wait and judge when 8.1 and later 8.2 are out.

For the app situation Microsoft still needs to work on unification between its offerings. Why they did not open up the on WP8 present win32 API is beyond illogical.

Edited 2013-10-09 23:13 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Dano Member since:
2006-01-22

Do we have any benchmarks to make these vague speed claims? Benchmarks on the same processor? 😃 I doubt it.

Here is one I noticed: http://www.neowin.net/news/windows-phone-8-ie10-gets-benchmarked-be...

Edited 2013-10-09 23:28 UTC

Reply Score: 3

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

That's an HTML5 compatibility test, not a benchmark.

But I doubt that WP is considerably faster or slower than Android or iOS.

Reply Score: 2

Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

Android made some huge performance jumps in 4.2 and 4.3. When talking performance its not "the Android" but pre and post JB.

I had the GNexus with 4.0. When the 4.1 update came it felt like I got a new phone. Not because of features but because it felt faster en nicer to use.

Reply Score: 3

tkeith Member since:
2010-09-01

4.1=fast 4.2=slow(plus trim problem on some devices) 4.3=fast again.

Reply Score: 2

phoenix Member since:
2005-07-11

4.1=fast 4.2=slow(plus trim problem on some devices) 4.3=fast again.


Really? On my LG Optimus G, it's been:
4.0=slow (stock ROM)
4.1=much, much faster (stock ROM)
4.2=slightly faster (RootBox)
4.3=faster again (Carbon)
4.3+binary adreno drivers=extremely fast (Carbon)

Reply Score: 2

RE: Leave my back button alone...
by JAlexoid on Thu 10th Oct 2013 00:16 UTC in reply to "Leave my back button alone..."
JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

And also add a forward button. Back button works great why mess with a good thing.

Yes. The back button is an excellent thing, though I disagree that a forward button is needed.

WP8 slower than Android...I see just the opposite on my 925.

Depends which devices you compare. No matter what people say, but specs do matter for the phone to be fast.

Reply Score: 2

Startmenu button
by Lennie on Wed 9th Oct 2013 22:59 UTC
Lennie
Member since:
2007-09-22

Many people heared that the startmenu button will return in Windows 8.1

But I heared it will ONLY return in the Windows 8.1 enterprise/pro/whatever-business version.

Can anyone confirm this ?

If so, this seems even more braindead then their previous decision.

Reply Score: 2

RE: Startmenu button
by Nelson on Wed 9th Oct 2013 23:02 UTC in reply to "Startmenu button"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Not true.

Reply Score: 3

RE[2]: Startmenu button
by darknexus on Thu 10th Oct 2013 00:24 UTC in reply to "RE: Startmenu button"
darknexus Member since:
2008-07-15

Not true.

Yeah, you'll get your start button all right. What you won't get back is your start menu (not that this has any baring whatsoever on Windows Phon 8 which is what this article is about).

Reply Score: 3

RE[3]: Startmenu button
by Nelson on Thu 10th Oct 2013 00:34 UTC in reply to "RE[2]: Startmenu button"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Who cares about the start menu? If you do download one of many programs to bring it back and move on with your life.

Reply Score: 4

RE[4]: Startmenu button
by Fergy on Thu 10th Oct 2013 06:22 UTC in reply to "RE[3]: Startmenu button"
Fergy Member since:
2006-04-10

Who cares about the start menu?

The people who have used the OS with the startmenu since 1995. Now they get something they thought was Windows but it feels like something completely different.

Reply Score: 2

RE[5]: Startmenu button
by Nelson on Thu 10th Oct 2013 08:19 UTC in reply to "RE[4]: Startmenu button"
Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Damn, you got me there. I almost gave a damn. Unlike you, I put more faith in people's abilities to adapt. Probably because they've done so already for other OSes.

If its that big of an issue download a start menu replacement.

Reply Score: 2

Been using WP8 the previous months
by reduz on Wed 9th Oct 2013 23:50 UTC
reduz
Member since:
2006-02-25

And I just can't wait to get back to Android. It sucks, It just plain sucks. I'm waiting for whathever comes next after Nexus 4 and abandoning WP ship.

I had such high hopes for it initially, but after some more months with it, I despise it.

It's just not there, it's so difficult to use, so confusing, here's a list of everything I hate from the top of my head.

-Still full of bugs, a year and many updates later.

-Worst multitasking since iPhone 1. Apps take a long time to switch (switching is instant on Android and iOS by now) and most of them don't even remeber state properly. This is unacceptable.

-Worst browser ever, can't save a single page in the cache. Leave a page loading or opened and go do something else, go back to read your pages and BAM can't load page error, even when it opened a few seconds ago.

-Worst map ever, go check some addres to enter it in maps, go back. Horray! it forgot previous state. Almost everything forgets previous state on Windows Phone when you multitask.

-Calling someone not on your recent list? check this usability win. Tap: Phone -> Addres Book -> Search -> tap contact -> tap call. Five taps to call. Why can't they like android and have call/search combined?

-Oh also, search button is not contextual it always opens Bing. Yeah, and they add another search button identical to the physical one on screens that have search. I find myself on Bing all the time i want to search thinking.. "eh.. what was I doing? how did i get here?"

-Apps suck and most useful ones (unlike ios and Android) are not only paid but pretty expensive. And yet they still work like shit because most are written for WP7 (Resuming....)

-Live tiles are a nice idea but they and bg notifications are implemented as a background process, so you may get a notification, then run out of signal (as is usual on third world countries like mine) and not be able to see what you received, because the app needs to fetch the msgs again (skype, gchat for example).

-Why can't I see the battery and network icon all the time? I have to go to the main screen THEN swipe down from the top to see it. Nothing is using that space anyway!! Why not display it all the time? This seriously pisses me off because combining the terrible multitasking with having to go to main screen and back is bad, but then forcing me to swipe down? why??? ;)

-Did I mention it's full of bugs? stupid bugs like not being able to answer calls. It's not like the phone freezes, the answer button I can pressed normally but does nothing! And also, swiping up the screensaver gets stuck, only goes up a few centimeters and i can't disable it, like if it was physically stuck!

I could go on like this forever.
Short story, I hate it, I don't understand how "customer satisfaction" is high. I can understand that there's plenty of crap Android phones out there, but the medium to high end ones blow away Windows Phone in any way.

Windows Phone 8 sucks. At the rate Microsoft is improving it, it will take at least 2 or 3 more years until it's usable as, say, Android 2.3.

Reply Score: 11

Dano Member since:
2006-01-22

You must have a lemon. What phone model do you have?

Reply Score: 1

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

I'm sorry, but having had to use a HTC WP8s for a whole month as a main phone I concur on most of the points.
It's also very obvious that WP gets the least amount of support from app developers. Audible is not showing my WSJ subscription on WP, while it's there on Android and iOS.

Reply Score: 4

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Fine, spell out the points with which you concur. Surely its not the inaccurate depiction of multitasking, exaggeration of state saving problems, and inaccuracy surrounding the status icon visibility.

Since you concur with most of the points but only specifically bring up one, I'm interested.

Reply Score: 3

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

- Apps take very long to switch 2-10!!! seconds, with the exception of some built-in apps
- IE tries to reload pages... that's really fun when you're out of a data connection and have been looking at a page with a contact number.
- Calling someone is a pain, specially when you have not called the person recently. And there is no most called, only call history... Why do I have to go to their contact card, open it and then tap on the phone number? If I already have all the intention to call them, not tweet at them or post something on their FB wall?
- Incoming call and call screens are visually overloaded.
- Apps on WP don't get any love... And I mean it. Even FB app is behind in functionality compared to iOS/Android.

It's plain frustrating. I took a leap of faith when buying a WP8 device.

Reply Score: 5

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

- Apps take very long to switch 2-10!!! seconds, with the exception of some built-in apps


It depends which apps, written for which OS version, and how you're switching.

If the app supports Fast Resume (WP8 app which opted in) then it instantly resumes anywhere assuming the app developer implemented state saving for the important bits (in case the app isn't resident in memory at the time of the rehydration).

If an app is a WP8 app which hasn't opted in, then it'll instantly resume if backed into (using Back button) or switched to using the multitasking menu.

If its a WP7 app it's the same thing as an opted out WP8 app.


- IE tries to reload pages... that's really fun when you're out of a data connection and have been looking at a page with a contact number.


This is probably one I've seen before -- I'm not sure what exactly happens here. If the process gets killed or if it just crashes, but it frustrates me every once in a while. Certainly not enough to cause a problem.


- Calling someone is a pain, specially when you have not called the person recently. And there is no most called, only call history... Why do I have to go to their contact card, open it and then tap on the phone number? If I already have all the intention to call them, not tweet at them or post something on their FB wall?
- Incoming call and call screens are visually overloaded.


I guess these are just preferences. I pin my frequent contacts to my start screen, or often have them in my recent call list (which is searchable) that I don't clear often. More than likely it's either in a pinned contact or pinned group I have though.

I also usually start searching for a contact when I need to by going to the People Hub first (only because I dont know if I'm caling via Skype or via Phone until I see what they have in their contact card. That eliminates a tap from reduz's steps he outlined earlier.


- Apps on WP don't get any love... And I mean it. Even FB app is behind in functionality compared to iOS/Android.


I think the FB app has gotten much better recently, especially if you use the beta version of the app in the marketplace. It lacks bells and whistles like Chat Heads, but its getting important updates at a fast pace (Microsoft develops the app in house).

Reply Score: 2

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

In short these are frustrating issues, regardless of the root causes and the party to blame. And I'm not the only one experiencing these issues.

FYI: The longest to resume/start is actually Facebook. Just a second ago it took 10 seconds to resume!!! Cold boot on Galaxy Nexus took less than 1. iPhone4 took ~2 seconds. So it's has less features and is more frustrating to use...

Reply Score: 3

The123king Member since:
2009-05-28

And you fell to a fiery death....

Reply Score: 1

reduz Member since:
2006-02-25

It might be an emotional rant, but I believe i'm describing true use cases. It might be personal use cases and other people might use the phone in different ways.

Still, most of these shouldn't happen and, truism or not, nothing changes the fact that Windows Phone as a whole is in a very immature state, not just the apps.

I know given enough time, Microsoft gets products to the point they are perfect, but so far after a year, WP8 hasn't changed a bit. Compare it to the loads of things that happen in the mobile space and Windows Phone is like a turd floating in the water, barely moving. The point when It was new and exciting wore off a while ago and any changes and improvements seem to be far far away in the horizon.

In other words, even if Microsoft is working hard on it ,as they always do, the rest of the mobile tech world has been moving so fast that Microsoft's usual pace of development seems like a snail.

Windows 8/Phone 8 were amazing steps forward, cards well played. It seems that took a lot of effort to get out of the door. Finally good competition for Apple and Google. But it's been a year now and all that ran out of steam. It's just not exciting to follow them anymore.

Reply Score: 3

Dano Member since:
2006-01-22

I took a year and a half just to roll out Android after the iPhone, and it was already a project long before Google purchased Android.

Reply Score: 2

Dano Member since:
2006-01-22

Interesting comment from Paul Thurott's staff:

Your patience with GDR2 will soon be rewarded.

Reply Score: 2

Dano Member since:
2006-01-22

It's claims like "it's full of bugs" and "application quality sucks" and "it crashes" without any details... that does in-fact make it a useless rant.

There are only a few minor things that I would change in the current GGR2 release, mainly involves the email app:

1. The email app should have a "select all as read" feature. I hear that this is going to be patched.
2. When you delete an email, the email program should take you to your next unread email, instead it dumps you back to your unread email list.
3. When you go into email, it would be nice if you could default into the unread email page and not the all email page.
4. When you hit the phone dial tile, it should take you to your contact list immediately, not your call history.
5. Lack of swipe keyboard. I know that MS is coming out with a new type of swipe keyboard in future updates.
6. I am still undecided if swiping up and then clicking an answer button is good for answering a phone call. This is probably so you can't answer the phone in your pocket. I guess Android is similar with a swipe to the side.

Despite the bad, there are many more things that are better than my Android experience on my Samsung S3. WP9 is definitely more fluid and apps never crash or hang on my 925. I actually think that there are more good applications that I use daily that have nice interfaces than my S3, and I would not go back. Pretty amazing since the OS is only like a year old. I have several friends on T-Mobile that went out and traded in their old iPhones and Samsungs for a 925 after seeing mine and they love it too.

I still don't understand this rant about the worst multi-tasking...am I missing something?

Edited 2013-10-10 03:04 UTC

Reply Score: 2

reduz Member since:
2006-02-25

I never mentioned apps crashing or bad app quality per se. I don't think you even bothered to read.

Apps just forget their previous state very often when you go back to them... means just that. You are doing something, you go do something else and when you are back the app reconnects and reloads. Almost all apps in WP8 do this.

Maybe you can't notice it because you have excellent 3G/LTE where you live, I don't.

Reply Score: 2

Dano Member since:
2006-01-22

Windows Phone 8 throws a suspended or shutdown event to every app. If the app does not save state it's because the App writer did not create code for the event and this is not the fault of the OS. I can't name one app designed for Windows Phone 8 that does this can you?

Edited 2013-10-10 11:51 UTC

Reply Score: 3

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Pretty amazing since the OS is only like a year old.


It's not a year old. The OS is quite older than that. The UI layer is at least 3 years old, if not more... I mean didn't they have Zune with that UI paradigm?

Reply Score: 3

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

I'm inclined to agree. I still have my HTC Arrive, even though I'm not on Sprint anymore, and even after the 7.8 update it still had its annoying bugs. I had played with a Nokia phone with 7.8 and not a single one of those bugs existed. It's certainly plausible that he has bad hardware.

Reply Score: 3

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

So you have a phone running and OS we're not even talking about and you're inclined to agree. Actually, no you're not. I'm surprised by your comment.

Reply Score: 1

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

Wow, even when I agree with you, you attack me. I was talking about it being a hardware issue, as you suggested. I could have said my old Motorola Cliq had isssues my HTC MyTouch didn't and the meaning would have been the same.

See a doctor, please. You're psychotic.

Reply Score: 5

tylerdurden Member since:
2009-03-17

Unfortunately I doubt astroturfing gigs come with benefits, specially in this economy...

Reply Score: 5

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

You can't agree because you've never used the OS.

Reply Score: 3

Morgan Member since:
2005-06-29

And once again, what I was saying was OS-agnostic. Bad hardware is bad hardware. I think you like to argue for the sake of arguing, common sense be damned.

Reply Score: 2

pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

I was going to write the same post about my experience with my HTC 8S. Everything he said is true and I could add a whole bunch of other stuff. I can't wait to get my new Android phone.

Reply Score: 2

iswrong Member since:
2012-07-15

HTC 8S


But then the 8s is really a pathetic phone. I had one, it has only 512MB RAM and its internal storage is almost filled on a fresh phone (mine had ~1 GB free). The display waves if you press the 'glass' to hard.

I now have a Lumia 920, and the experience is much better and smoother than the 8s.

That said, I have mixed feelings towards Microsoft's treatment of Windows Phone. When WP7 was introduced, it was a fresh new interface. I had a Nokia 710. The hardware was great for the price and WP7 had a lot of potential, but was hampered by limitations and bugs. For instance, the built-in messaging hub is great, if it could maintain your online presence. Usually, it would lose connection after a certain amount of time and you wouldn't receive messages. Also, background tasks did not work at all. It made applications like Skype totally useless.

Rather than fixing Windows Phone 7, they left existing users out in the cold. And rebased everything on top of the Windows NT kernel. The party line was that this was necessary for multi-core CPUs, etc. However, many of the problems that plagued Windows Phone 7 aren't fixed yet. Background applications such as Skype are still hit and miss. The messages hub works fine on my Lumia, but my wife uses my old HTC 8s for her Germany SIM card, it has the same old message hub problems. There is still no proper notification support.

Windows Phone 8 has been out for a year now, there have been some minor updates, but they are just that *minor*. The only noticeable change for me in GDR2 was data sense (which you have to hand-configure).

Microsoft is mistreating not only their customers, but also Windows Phone as a platform. It could be great. Some days one wishes that Nokia's excellent hardware could be used with Android.

Reply Score: 3

pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

I'm ok with the 8S's performance, I can even live with the limited storage (afrer GDR2 it doesn't fill up by itself), but the OS and the ecosystem are severely lacking. Multitasking is also a big problem - I understand it has only 512mb of RAM and it has to resume from state quite often, but few apps restore properly. Also a lot of apps don't run properly in the background - Whatsapp, IM+ and similar - and let's not forget the fact that apps can update their tiles only every 30 minutes.

BTW, media support is awful - I constantly get duplicates for my songs and all players are crap, including Microsoft's.

Wp8 is incredibly incomplete and buggy. I hope that GDR3 and Windows 8.1 really bring something radically different to the table.

Reply Score: 2

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

See, this is what I'm talking about: Apps can update their tiles with a push notification as often as they'd like, or with a periodic background trigger every 15 minutes.

Same goes for toast, lock screen wallpapers, or lock screen badges.

Reply Score: 3

pandronic Member since:
2006-05-18

So why do some apps inform you that they can update their tile only every 30 minutes because it's an OS limitation? I've stumbled upon 2 or 3 already.

Edited 2013-10-11 14:10 UTC

Reply Score: 2

ronaldst Member since:
2005-06-29

It's a mystery why Belfiore and Myerson still work there. It's an even bigger mystery why Belfiore has been promoted.

The MetroUI is being wasted at the hands of these folks.

Reply Score: 2

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Because in the epic internal power struggle which was Windows Phone and Dev Div (.NET) vs WinDiv, Windows Phone won.

The head of Windows Phone (Myerson) is probably the most powerful man at MSFT since be now runs all of Windows. Elop has JLG who runs hardware (ex Windows VP and Sinofsky lieutenant) reporting to him in Devices. The center of power has shifted.

Its a validation of WP, Metro, and that strategy. Windows Phone now has the full resources of the company at its disposal.

Reply Score: 3

ronaldst Member since:
2005-06-29

That's so depressive. Promoting people who can't market stuff to consumers with even more funding/responsabilities.

Reply Score: 2

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

That of course assumes that Windows Phones aren't selling more (because they already sell well -- the Lumia 520 is the best selling _Windows_ device ever) because of marketing, features, or customer satisfaction.

Windows Phone is about to get kicked into overdrive, and I implore you to see the writing on the wall. Microsoft is now a significant player in mobile with their Nokia acquisition and have essentially limitless financial resources to pull it (and Surface) off.

They're a tenacious competitor who are playing a long game. its a pincer move between the Desktop and the Enterprise (esp since they're now snatching up BBRY enterprise contracts) to get them a foothold.

I predict two more quarters of volume growth for Nokia and north of 10 million units a quarter by the end of the year, displacing a few Android OEMs.

Reply Score: 3

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

because they already sell well -- the Lumia 520 is the best selling _Windows_ device ever)


One of the most prominent reasons given for Nokia not to go with Android was that Nokia would not be able to compete in a race to the bottom with low-margin Android devices.

A few years later, and the big supposed champion for Nokia is a low-margin phone. The hypocrisy is palpable.

Reply Score: 3

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

And how exactly do you know the 520 is low margin? Nokia has turned a profit on a $20 phone.

Reply Score: 3

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

Turning profit and low margin are not mutually exclusive. 520 is a very low margin device.

Reply Score: 2

_cynic_ Member since:
2012-04-18

...because of marketing, features, or customer satisfaction.
...
Windows Phone is about to get kicked into overdrive
...
They're a tenacious competitor who are playing a long game.
...

WTF! Not even MS's PR people and executives speak like that.

Lumias have an ASP of 225 dollars, the international market is around 400 dollars. That is way bellow market average. Add to that the 250mi per quarter MS gift, which is something like 40-80USD per Lumia sold.

In a nut shell, WPs are one of the cheapest smartphones and don't even f**king sell.

Reply Score: 4

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

Uh, that entire comment is moot. Microsoft has purchased Nokia's handset division. The platform support payments won't have to be repaid.

And Lumia phones do sell, in fact, they have been consistently increasing their volumes by double digits every quarter for the past year. That's exponential growth.

What happens when they increase in Q3? Then again in Q4? This is getting harder and harder for your types to deny.

Reply Score: 3

hamster Member since:
2006-10-06


And Lumia phones do sell, in fact, they have been consistently increasing their volumes by double digits every quarter for the past year. That's exponential growth.


And yet again claims about growth numbers without context. It's not so impressive when one starts to think about the markedshare. It's not hard to get double digets grownumbers when you start from scratch...

Reply Score: 2

_cynic_ Member since:
2012-04-18

I predict two more quarters of volume growth for Nokia and north of 10 million units a quarter by the end of the year, displacing a few Android OEMs.


Nokia has been overtaken by big names like Coolpad, even with 10mi it won't overtake any manufacturer.

Reply Score: 1

Soulbender Member since:
2005-08-18

the Lumia 520 is the best selling _Windows_ device ever


That's kinda like being the tallest midget.

Reply Score: 4

Dano Member since:
2006-01-22

Alright i'll take a stab at this if no one else will:


-Still full of bugs, a year and many updates later.


Please explain where is the bug? An example?


-Worst multitasking since iPhone 1. Apps take a long time to switch (switching is instant on Android and iOS by now) and most of them don't even remeber state properly. This is unacceptable.

How are you "switching"? I don't see this on my WP8.


-Worst browser ever, can't save a single page in the cache. Leave a page loading or opened and go do something else, go back to read your pages and BAM can't load page error, even when it opened a few seconds ago.


Must be your connection. You can cache a page and start a new tab no sweat.


-Worst map ever, go check some addres to enter it in maps, go back. Horray! it forgot previous state. Almost everything forgets previous state on Windows Phone when you multitask.


What map? If you are talking about Nokia Now, you can actually download the map and run it without a connection. If you don't like that, you can run Google Maps. What application?


-Calling someone not on your recent list? check this usability win. Tap: Phone -> Addres Book -> Search -> tap contact -> tap call. Five taps to call. Why can't they like android and have call/search combined?


I agree with you on this one, there are one or two extra taps that should not be there and the dialing is buried too deep in menus. Set a tile for now or use a voice command.


-Oh also, search button is not contextual it always opens Bing. Yeah, and they add another search button identical to the physical one on screens that have search. I find myself on Bing all the time i want to search thinking.. "eh.. what was I doing? how did i get here?"


Hit the back button? Obviously Microsoft wants you to use Bing. The contectual part you got on some YouTube review correct? You can grab the Google app and set a Google search tile no problem. Or link to any other website via a tile.


-Apps suck and most useful ones (unlike ios and Android) are not only paid but pretty expensive. And yet they still work like shit because most are written for WP7 (Resuming....)


Makes no sense. There are just as many free good apps to do what you need. The paid apps are even better quality in most cases than other platforms. You have not been to the store in a while and talking out of your ass.


-Live tiles are a nice idea but they and bg notifications are implemented as a background process, so you may get a notification, then run out of signal (as is usual on third world countries like mine) and not be able to see what you received, because the app needs to fetch the msgs again (skype, gchat for example).


If you don't have a signal and nothing comes into the phone how is the app supposed to notify you?


-Why can't I see the battery and network icon all the time? I have to go to the main screen THEN swipe down from the top to see it. Nothing is using that space anyway!! Why not display it all the time?

Because the whole idea behind the modern interface is to do away with chrome. This feature is a mixed bag, and they should have an option to change this, but then it will be all over your games and other apps and take up real-estate for nothing really.


This seriously pisses me off because combining the terrible multitasking with having to go to main screen and back is bad, but then forcing me to swipe down? why??? ;)

Again, what is the rant against multitasking. You just hit your tile again and your back. Or use the back button?


-Did I mention it's full of bugs? stupid bugs like not being able to answer calls. It's not like the phone freezes, the answer button I can pressed normally but does nothing! And also, swiping up the screensaver gets stuck, only goes up a few centimeters and i can't disable it, like if it was physically stuck!


This is not a bug in WP8. It is a defective screen on your phone!


I could go on like this forever.


Please don't. Why do people rant on here before thinking?

Edited 2013-10-10 03:22 UTC

Reply Score: 0

Thom_Holwerda Member since:
2005-06-29

As someone who has used Windows Phone for longer and more extensively than anyone on this board - since launch day - I can confirm all the OP's complaints.

The multitasking one and lack of quality applications are the most pressing ones. Applications absolutely suck at saving state, and have crazy loading times - and that's even without seeing the dreadful "Resuming..."

Another major issue is the lack of progress. It almost seems as if Microsoft is incapable of updating the operating system, and it has improved little since WP8 was released - and even the move from WP7 to WP8 brought little in user benefits. Effectively, WP has stagnated from a user's point of view since the very first release. The additions we *have* seen have been meagre, at best.

Microsoft simply hasn't taken Windows Phone very seriously - that's the only explanation I can find. And don't take my word for it - even Nokia itself lamented the lack of progress in Windows Phone, and Microsoft's disinterest.

If you still deny all this, then you're either delusional, or you have an agenda.

Reply Score: 4

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

So you confirm every point including having to go back to the start screen to view status icons? That obviously isn't the case, its up to the app to show the system tray and many of them do.

Or the background tasks not updating actual data in the app? Also provably false, a push notification runs a background trigger which has a time slice of CPU execution time with which to update a cache of data. Its up to the app and many apps including Twitter do this.

The state saving goes hand in hand with app quality and can vary, bit you two wildly exaggerate the problems. I have similar problems with Android widgets which randomly stop updating, but I don't blame Android. I blame the individual app.

Reply Score: 3

cdude Member since:
2008-09-21


Its up to the app


A user unlikely knows or like to know whos responsible for a problem. There is a problem. Point. And while that blame game goes on I see very little progress too. In the future that may indeed change with Nokia assimilated and a stronger role of WP within Microsoft. Right now priority seems to be with Windows on desktop, Server, Services like Azure and Bing, xbox, Devices like Surface and RT. WP comes last. That needs to change.

Edited 2013-10-10 09:28 UTC

Reply Score: 1

Nelson Member since:
2005-11-29

The Windows Phone head runs Windows now, with all of his subordinates filling key roles in that powerful division. He brings with him the influence of the .NET stack (ensuring they aren't shunned out of the WinRT platform) and the original designers of Metro (not the copycat the Windows team did). So you're going to see a major conversion. According to Thurrot, the API unity for WP8.1 is rumored to be over 70%.

What's important is that Windows (and Windows Phone once their dust settles) will be on a yearly release schedule which should allow them ample time to move -- and Microsoft will have moved the WP code base to the more mature Windows RT stack which has support for many more ARM chipsets (including Tegra that's in the Surface) as well as Intel chips.

The inmates are no longer running the asylum in WinDiv, there's new leadership there and many things will be changing. There is a very, very real possibility that Stephen Elop will be running the whole of Microsoft soon.

Even if he doesn't -- the power struggle is over. Windows Phone won over the Windows division's objections.

Reply Score: 2

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

That needs to change only if WP is to be more than a replacement for the featurephones.

Reply Score: 2

JAlexoid Member since:
2009-05-19

If you don't have a signal and nothing comes into the phone how is the app supposed to notify you?

Because if I drop off the WiFi I might not want to download that 5MB image when on my 500MB per month mobile plan, yet still want to get that email.

Reply Score: 3

Comment by Luminair
by Luminair on Thu 10th Oct 2013 01:27 UTC
Luminair
Member since:
2007-03-30

The funny thing is, the back button is a copy, and having no back button is a copy. Microsoft being Microsoft

Reply Score: 2

AnalogOnce
Member since:
2012-12-04

For a little more than a year, I dabbled with an Motorola Android phone and a Nokia Windows 7.8 phone.

While I agree with the opinions concerning the quality of WP apps, what I really hated was the capacitive buttons and the press and hold multitasking, the lack of a notification center and the worst of all, the contacts app which is just plain stupid.

Android is still a great step beyond WP, but those capacitive buttons are just constant source of irritation and mistaken clicks when one handing the phone.

Short of telekinesis, the single home button is my preference.

Reply Score: 2

You don't need the back button
by ze_jerkface on Thu 10th Oct 2013 20:17 UTC
ze_jerkface
Member since:
2012-06-22

You don't need USB syncing of contacts.

You don't need FM radio.

You don't need VPN support.

You don't need a richer email application.

You don't need a different browser.

You don't need to be able to set the default search engine.

You don't need the .NET framework.

You don't need to access Windows networks with your Windows Phone.

From day one NuMicrosoft has been telling Windows phone users and developers what they don't need. That's the opposite approach a business should take especially given their market position.

Like Thom I was an early adopter but have since dropped the platform. NuMicrosoft has created the worst of both worlds with Windows Phone. The walled garden of the iPhone but without the actual garden or the Android ability to break out of it. Windows Phone could have been a great platform if they actually *listened* to feedback. Yes it is selling well outside of the US at the low-end but that is only thanks to the name and design prowess of Nokia. It's only a matter of time before the cheap Androids are as good as the S4. And NuMicrosoft will probably make the bone-headed move of removing the Nokia brand.

Reply Score: 4