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Last week I started testing a Windows Phone. It can only be described as a “delight”, with only minor hick-ups. WP7 is a very competent phone OS and even though it has gotten some negative reviews I was surprised that Microsoft has managed to create an OS with so many features.

Design & Experience


Microsoft has put a lot of effort into creating a User Experience that is as easy as it is eye-catching and revolutionary. They focused on creating both a lock-screen and a home-screen that give you almost any information you need. You don’t have to open an app to get information. At the look-screen you get information about upcoming events, new text messages and new e-mail messages.

The home-screen consists of a bunch of “tiles”, which are sort of a shortcut to their respective apps. The tiles can be moved, sorted and removed and you can also add more tiles from the App list.
The tiles contains information pushed from their apps, i.e. new messages count and missed phone calls. The calendar tile displays upcoming events, and as a developer you can customize your app’s tile and schedule updates like changing background image and putting a little number/counter in the tile.

So, my major experience from this last week is the fact that I don’t have to scroll around in apps as much as with the iPhone. I get most of the information from the home-screen. Most often I’ve only checked the lock-screen for indication of new information.


One of the features I’ve come to like is the integration between contacts and Facebook. From the People hub you get updates from Facebook and if you click on a contact that is connected to Facebook you get their list of Facebook updates.

For the moment there is no way to work with Twitter in the same way. It will be sweet when/if this feature comes to WP7.


The marketplace has a fresh layout and it’s easy to find the app your looking for. In very short time the Marketplace has grown with a lot of titles. There are many cool games with Xbox live integration. The only app I missed was Spotify, which is reportedly coming to WP7 soon.


WP7 comes with Office pre-installed (Word, Excel, PowerPoint, OneNote and Outlook). So you can create and edit documents that you can store on SkyDrive or a SharePoint installation. I have only tried SkyDrive which works great.

The Outlook app is impressive, with loads of features and a slick UI. The ability to flag a message is something I’ve missed in the iPhone mail app.

Developer tools

Since I’m a developer, this area is one of the most important for me. I’ve been developing Web and Windows applications using Microsoft .Net Framework since 2003 so developing an app for WP7 is very familiar to me. So I kicked off very fast when creating my first app (not released) which reads photos from the Flickr API.

The only thing I missed here was the ability to deploy the app from Visual Studio to the actual phone without registering as a developer with Microsoft. I understand why It’s like this, but it would have been sweet to be able to do this.


I found only a few issues using the Windows Phone. First, I couldn’t get the latest update (NoDo) even though it’s released according to Microsoft.

The second issue, which is most severe, is that I can’t transfer a call to another phone. At our company we use a Mobile Phone Switch from the Swedish operator 3 (Hi3G), so connecting and transferring calls to other people in our switch is something we do many times every day. This is where we ran out of luck. We found no way to do this on the Windows Phone 7. We managed to create conference calls, but when the host hangs up or tries to transfer the call (using a Hi3G special method) the entire call is ended for all parties. We called Hi3G for instructions and they didn’t find any way to do this either. So I posted a couple of tweets about this without getting any reply.

So as of today I’m back with the iPhone until the day Microsoft releases an update that will address this issue. I never thought this would be an issue. Over the years we’ve used many different phones, and this even worked with Windows Mobile 6.

If you read this and know how to connect and transfer a call to another phone, please post a comment.

Closing comments

Windows Phone 7 is great! I hope Microsoft will manage to get a much larger market share in a near future. When Microsoft release a Swedish localization I will be the first guy to recommend the phone to everyone I meet.

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