Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 5th Sep 2012 23:41 UTC
PDAs, Cellphones, Wireless If there's one thing I miss in the current smartphone industry, it's design. Honest to good, real design. We basically see one boring slab after another, void of any true identity, whether it's iPhone, Samsung, or any of the others. In this boring world of grey, black, and the occasional white, Nokia is the jester, coming up with its own unique designs and crazy colour selection. Today, the company unveiled the Lumia 920 and 820 to continue this trend.
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RE: am I missing something?
by dsmogor on Mon 10th Sep 2012 11:29 UTC in reply to "am I missing something?"
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However, I don't understand what people are so impressed with these new Nokia phones. Honestly, I don't see what makes them so different. I'm not calling them a copy-cat, and I'm not saying that Android or iOS devices are better looking or more unique..... a phone is a phone. But from what I can see, their devices have rounded edges and come in bright colors. Holy shit! What's so amazing about this?
In a world of black/white slabs a colourfull brick is a king ;) I agree though the bright color will get old fast, but they have their shot now.

Shouldn't the buzz be about something substantial? Is there major improvement to the hardware?

In the Windows world it indeed it, S4 is the best SOC on the market. The promise (yet unrealized) is WP8 allows ones from other producers (like A15) if better.

Is Windows Phone 8 going to spank the other phones when it launches? (I don't really know... these are legitimate questions, not sarcasm.) I remember seeing a commercial for the first Lumia with WP7 that aired here in the US. This guy sat down next to this girl and the narrator was telling him to show her his phone so she would notice him. Apparently light blue phones with curved edges get the juices flowing! The narrator said "scroll through the live tiles, then turn the phone so she can see the curved edges." That was it. "This phone has live tiles and curved edges... revolution!." The guy didn't even do anything with his phone, he just scrolled up and down the home screen. At least Apple and Samsung commercials show people actually doing something on their devices, not just scrolling back and forth over tiles.

Most people excited are either tired with Android quirks (not perfectly smooth scrolling comes first) or wanting another run of locked to the bottom ecosystem.
The commercial is in fact addressed to already convinced.
A lot of them are WP developers wanting their cosy MS relationship to start bearing fruits in the mobile world. Or unsuccessful Android devs wanting to make name for themselves on rapidly growing new platform.

Why is everyone making such a big deal over bright colors and round edges? That seems so superficial and lame.

I believe this comes directly from MS brought conviction about the superiority of the Metro design.

I also don't understand what makes live tiles so awesome.
In fact, I don't see what makes Live Tiles necessary on a mobile phone at all. When I want information from an app, I just open the app.

This is the IPhone approach. If you're contend with it, just stick to it.
For me the glimpse mechanism (be it tiles, widgets, lock screen glimpses, summary screens) is just more inline with the way people use their phones, to stay up to date and quickly filter out irrelevant information.

It doesn’t take long, and I get much more information than I would from a small tile. But I don’t do this on a phone, and I really don’t know anyone else who does either. If I need to see what’s on my agenda for the day, I just tap and open the calendar app. If I want to check my inbox, I either open the e-mail app or slide open the notification area on iOS or Android.
When I’m on my mobile device, I’m in a different frame of mind. I am focusing on one thing at a time. There just isn’t any significant gain in productivity in going back to the Home or Start screen and staring at a small “live tile” instead of going to the Home screen and tapping to launch the app I’m interested in.
If quick glimpse allows you not to start the app at all you've got a gain. The tiles have the added advantage of unifying the look and interaction with various information sources.
If Microsoft would have allowed Metro apps to run in the Desktop mode in Windows 8 (or even if they allowed you to dock a few live tiles to the side of the screen in Desktop mode, replacing the functionality of “Windows Gadgets” from Windows Vista and 7), I could see Live Tiles being somewhat useful. If I’m working on something and I want to quickly see if I have any messages in my inbox, or what the current temperature is outside, I could just glance over at the side of the screen and get back to work.

Instead of having to download and install specialized gadgets (which no one apparently cared to do since there were almost no useful gadgets for Vista or 7), by allowing a Metro app’s Tile to be docked to a sidebar, you could turn any Windows 8 app into a gadget. You could dock specific apps to the sidebar instead of pinning them to the Start menu and the Desktop mode and Metro mode would be better integrated. Add a tiny button to the Sidebar that throws you back to the Metro Start screen and it would be a better experience for a lot of users and allow every user to benefit from Metro, even the ones who are going to spend their entire time in Desktop mode working with non-Metro apps.

Good idea, but I don't expect to have it implemented.

To be honest, I think Microsoft should give up on competing with Android and iOS and instead use their partnership with Nokia to create what the Kin should have been. Go after the feature phone market with a smartphone OS. Microsoft can afford to subsidize the devices (so the carriers don't have to) and make up for it with Zune Pass, Xbox Live subscriptions, and royalties from app developers. Nokia can build their dumb phones off of a Windows CE core (which is a RTOS underneath and pretty reliable when it's stripped down) and make it easy to scale up their product line from your first dumb phone, to your feature phone, to your smart phone.

I believe it is what WP7 indeed is. The difference is only in the marketing. Nokia supposedly plans to continue with WP7 branch so that's not inconceivable you might be right. Besides their newest S40 offerings really blur feature / smartphone barrier.

Edited 2012-09-10 11:31 UTC

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