Last month, Scott Adams, the creator of the popular (and somewhat tech savvy) comic strip Dilbert was complaining on his blog site about his iPhone 3GS and Android-based smartphones. That gave Brandon Watson, who works at Microsoft on its Windows Phone 7 division, an opening. He offered to give Adams a Windows Phone 7 device with the upcoming Mango update to try out. If Adams felt the other phones were better, Watson said he would give $1,000 to a charity of Adams' choice.
This week, Adams announced on his blog site that he has now evaluated all three phones and gave the overall win to the Windows Phone 7 device (a Samsung Focus from AT&T) with the Mango update. Adams said the phone was tops in areas like the user interface and call quality. It also had a good battery life. However Adams said all three phones failed in terms of its touchscreen keyboards and that the apps for Windows Phone 7 were just "OKAY-ISH".
While the phone may have won on a purely technical standpoint, Adams did add, " ... the intangible coolness factor is impossible to ignore. Even the names Microsoft and Windows feel dated. And the home screen of the Windows phone is great from a usability standpoint, but lacks sizzle. I'd be lying if I said that didn't matter to me." While he did say that different people have different wants and needs for a smartphone, Adams said, "If you want a smartphone that is easy to use, performs well, has a good battery life, and doesn't frustrate you, the Windows Phone is the best choice of the three options I tested. All you give up is some hipster credibility and access to lesser-used apps."
Microsoft is expected to release the Mango update to Windows Phone 7 later this fall along with the first smartphones that will work natively with the update.