Hands on: Windows Phone 7 Series UI [Video]

Neowin sat down with Michael Chang from the Windows Phone team at Microsoft to take a hands on look at a Windows Phone 7 Series device.

The device, whose manufacturer was undisclosed, was a capacitive touch screen device with the new back, start and search buttons at the bottom of the device. Chang took us through the various new "Hubs" that Microsoft has created to organise applications and data.

Windows Phone 7 Series has been built from the ground up using an identical interface to the Zune HD to navigate through the operating system. From our first experiences with the device the operating system seems fast with fluid animations through different hubs and applications. The interface is simple, some may say basic, but it works well and displays information clearly on the screen and most importantly, quickly. We noticed a few graphic glitches and render slow downs as you can see in the video below but this appeared to be the result of an early build of the OS. 

Start Screen

A graphical arrangement of "tiles" has now replaced the aged start screen from Windows Mobile 6.x. The honeycomb interface has been replaced with live tiles that interact with services to provide updated data on the Start Screen. People can be pinned to the Start Screen and the interface is fully customisable for OEMs and mobile operators.

People:

People is a hub full of the latest data on your contacts. It will list your contacts details and their latest updates from Windows Live and Facebook. Microsoft has said that other data from third parties could be represented in this view so it's likely that other services, including Twitter, will be available in this view. Microsoft has built a live feed of the latest updates from your contacts into the people hub. This provides an ever changing feed of the latest updates from your friends.

Pictures:

The pictures hub includes support for multi touch zooming and pinch to zoom. Albums are layed out in tiles within the picture hub and albums from PCs and web services can be synced to the device. Microsoft demonstrated Facebook integration in its press conference where users can comment on a particular photo and sync that comment seamlessly to Facebook.

Office:

The Office hub provides you with quick access to documents and the SharePoint services.

Music + Video:

The music and video hub is the beauty of Windows Phone 7. The device syncs like a Zune HD straight to the Zune Software on a desktop PC. We questioned Microsoft on the ability to sync wirelessly and they said to expect this feature.

Games:

Windows Phone 7 is now fully integrated with the Xbox LIVE network. Microsoft officials refused to confirm what types of games will be available but at present there is avatar support and it's clear that cross gaming from your Xbox 360 to your Windows Phone 7 device is something the software giant is working hard on.

App Store?

Microsoft wanted to show off the UI today rather than focus on applications. The marketplace will be present in Windows Phone 7 series and Microsoft will be sharing full details on how existing applications and new applications will work in Windows Phone 7 at its annual MIX 2010 conference next month. The Marketplace will be a one stop shop for apps, games and music.

Can my HTC HD2 be upgraded?

Neowin also questioned Microsoft regarding upgrade support for existing devices but Microsoft officials refused to confirm whether devices such as the HTC HD2 will be upgradeable to Windows Phone 7. It seems the company is aware many people are anxious to see if the HD2 will see a ROM upgrade so my initial reaction is that it's still a decision that needs to be made.

Conclusion

Based on the basics that Microsoft demonstrated today, the platform appears to have a bright future. The user interface is simple but extremely useful. It's clear Microsoft has looked at the criticism of Windows Mobile in the same way it did with Windows Vista and has stepped back and made a great product because of this. We'll know a lot more about the developer strategy and applications at MIX 2010 next month but until then the underlying OS is a great start. Steve Ballmer, Microsoft CEO, confirmed that we should expect devices in time for the holiday season 2010 but Microsoft officials refused to give exact dates.

For full pictures of our hands on please see Long Zheng's post at istartedsomething.com. He has some fantastic photos.

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Kirkburn said,
They're an option on the full list of programs to the right of the start/block menu.

Yeah I saw that but I meant, the general phone settings like ringtone, wallpaper, network settings... stuff like that.

-ANiMaL- said,
As a Windows Mobile user I can see hell lot of improvements there. Good job MS.

Completely agree with you. I got rid of my WinMo 6.1 phone just because there were tons of new interfaces out there and WinMo was way behind. Nice to see a big improvement. Won't be jumping to get it as soon as it comes out but will definitely be checking it out when it's time to upgrade my phone.

The fact that so many people here are hating how different this UI is tells me that Microsoft has done exactly the right thing. Expect great hardware and great apps for this. There's an army of disenchanted WinMo developers just chomping at the bit for a major comeback. A lot of us moved onto iPhone, but give us the tools and the market, and we'll come right back.

How does that even make sense? If no one likes the new interface, then Microsoft has done exactly the wrong thing.

Edited by spacer, Feb 16 2010, 12:30pm :

spacer said,
How does that even make sense? If no one likes the new interface, then Microsoft has done exactly the wrong thing.

First, a lot of people do like it. Second, the vast majority of people who hate it haven't actually used it yet. Third, computing paradigms that are attacked so early have a habit of actually becoming very popular. Finally, these bits are early, and some percentage of the criticism here will probably be addressed before release anyways (eg. touch response, customizability).

I never liked transitional animations - not on computers, not on phones. I want to get from page to page without waiting for the hourglass animation (circa Windows 3.1) to finish flipping. If all the transitional animation is, is a substitute for a loading progress bar, then gear down the graphics or increase ram/processing power so it loads, literally, at a touch of a button.

kintamanate said,
I never liked transitional animations - not on computers, not on phones. I want to get from page to page without waiting for the hourglass animation (circa Windows 3.1) to finish flipping. If all the transitional animation is, is a substitute for a loading progress bar, then gear down the graphics or increase ram/processing power so it loads, literally, at a touch of a button.

I dont see why they cant implement an option to disable transitions, I really dont imagine they are necessary but add that bit extra raz-a-ma-tazz to the thing. Each to their own but I like the transitions and animations

If this ends up anywhere near as polished as the zune HD it will be amazing. I cant wait to see a finalized product. So far I'm impressed, gj Microsoft.

I see everybody's very upset that nobody can accuse Microsoft of copying anybody this time. It must be very strange and disconcerting to see something genuinely new show up in the smartphone arena that isn't just another rehashing of a tiled icon interface.

NTTAWWT, I love my Android phone, but the demo of WP7 got me excited. Smart tiles are something people like, and MS definitely presents an evolution of that. Android users might think tiles are a step back, but it doesn't change the 5-star rating of the $7 (with thousands of purchases) SlideScreen front-end app in Google's Market. People like graphical integrations of features.

My only visual complaint about the whole presentation in Barcelona was Ballmer's outfit. It's horrific. I mean, sure, it isn't quite the mindrape a turtleneck is, but a bright red too-long tie on a bright blue shirt? Reminds me of those headache-inducing websites back in the 90s.

Considering it's a pre-beta OS running on developer hardware, it looks pretty good. If it end up being as responsive as my Zune HD than it'll be just fine.

I find it amusing how everyone is so quick to pass judgment on an early build.

From what we saw in this video, I think the concept holds serious promise. I've been a longtime believer in so-called "dumbphones" (one less way for people to bother me, I carry a laptop everywhere for full computing/web anyhow) but I just might take a serious look at this when it hits the market.

I'll forgive the bland design and slowness, as those are probably artifacts of it being early in development. However, what a totally huge fail it is that the design is based off the Zune interface. Looks like I'll be skipping this OS too. /sigh

An interesting UI concept, but it seriously needs a lot of polishing before this thing gets released. At least Microsoft did the right thing with regard to integrating its Zune and Xbox Live services in order to make it more appealing to consumers, but I still do not see this overtaking the iPhone and Blackberry anytime soon.

Hahaha ah Neowin.

Before this was announced everyone said "Microsoft should bring the Zune UI to winmo"

Now when they've done that its "Oh wow, what was microsoft thinking. The zune UI was never meant for phones"

smartin0115 said,
Hmmm, can you say Zune HD with blocks for menus?
Yes? it is directly based off the work done for the Zune (and Media Center).

It's a lot better than what they have in 6x. A lot of new info you can do but the look still seems a bit unfinished and a bit scattered.

What the hell is that?? A mobile OS shouldn't have text hanging off the side of the screen. What were they thinking with that? The whole thing looks like some amateur themer came up with this.

And forget the UI for a second. Most of the reason why Windows Mobile has been ass is because of it's constant desire to crash. Let's see this thing in complete form, running for a couple of days. God knows I had many a crash with my old iPaq and Black Jack 2.

soLoredd said,
What the hell is that?? A mobile OS shouldn't have text hanging off the side of the screen. What were they thinking with that? The whole thing looks like some amateur themer came up with this.

It's called scrolling, and their alternative way of showing the user that more content can be accessed. Whether the text was arranged vertically or horizontally, it would be "hanging" off the screen. I'm glad this OS bears little resemblance to competitors.

I'm very pleased that it isn't just an iPhone/android clone. Microsoft has definately gone down the correct route by organising functions into groups rather than just having a big list. My understanding and my hope is that most apps will appear in the hubs. However, there is a full app list for when that's needed which is important.

ilaugh said,

It's called scrolling, and their alternative way of showing the user that more content can be accessed. Whether the text was arranged vertically or horizontally, it would be "hanging" off the screen. I'm glad this OS bears little resemblance to competitors.

I understand how the designer considered this scrolling to alert the user that there is more content. But I would have preferred something more sexy. This can't be the only human-computer interaction interface that is clear enough. Apple used dots and other more traditional system use scrollbars (or equivalent slider).

We'll see ... it's not that bad, but I can't say it is the greatest implementation of it either.

donkeyman said,

I understand how the designer considered this scrolling to alert the user that there is more content. But I would have preferred something more sexy. This can't be the only human-computer interaction interface that is clear enough. Apple used dots and other more traditional system use scrollbars (or equivalent slider).

We'll see ... it's not that bad, but I can't say it is the greatest implementation of it either.


What would you consider "sexy"? You're just scrolling for new content O.o Well that's the thing. Use dots and such and they'll just be another Samsung. They've made something as compelling with the moving background and information, which makes sense given the Quick play interface of the Zune software. Scroll bars to my knowledge, only appear when something is scrolling. The user can't actually touch them and use them for navigation like on a computer.

Edited by ilaugh, Feb 16 2010, 2:09am :

satanist said,
No Multitasking and flash? Then what is it for?

All they said is flash isn't ready "yet", it will be. No one said anything about multitasking. Just because they didn't show apps running everyones ready to jump to conclusions.

GP007 said,

All they said is flash isn't ready "yet", it will be. No one said anything about multitasking. Just because they didn't show apps running everyones ready to jump to conclusions.

"Microsoft in its keynote speech confirmed that it won't have Flash out of the box and has designed an interface that doesn't currently have any multitasking support. While potentially faster and simpler, the interface concedes one of Microsoft's primary advantages with Windows Mobile."

http://www.electronista.com/articles/10/02/15/wp7.has.improved.ui.but.notable.drawbacks/

satanist said,
No Multitasking and flash? Then what is it for?

Flash is coming from what I've heard. Multitasking has been re-engineered so that when you switch from one app to another, the OS pauses the app and gives you push notifications from that app. This makes sense since w/o a task manager or a windowing environment true multitasking becomes a pain in the ass.

Serenity76 said,

"Microsoft in its keynote speech confirmed that it won't have Flash out of the box and has designed an interface that doesn't currently have any multitasking support. While potentially faster and simpler, the interface concedes one of Microsoft's primary advantages with Windows Mobile."

http://www.electronista.com/articles/10/02/15/wp7.has.improved.ui.but.notable.drawbacks/

Oh wow, yet again everyone missess it. Because the they didn't "show" anything about apps AT ALL! Or talk about them, you can't say it has none. Seriously is it hard to understand here? The only app they showed at all was IE and Outlook. The whole point of the show is the base UI not the apps, they didn't even show the marketplace for gods sake.

Because they didn't show people a task switcher in the UI everyone thinks it''s got no multitasking period, oh jeez.

satanist said,
Can someone please tell me if it supports multitasking and flash?

Nope. Nope. And add no 'copy' and 'paste' to that list as well. But hey, at least it has facebook and the Zune UI cobbled together with a microfiche.

Edited by Serenity76, Feb 15 2010, 9:13pm :

Serenity76 said,

Nope. Nope. And add no 'copy' and 'paste' to that list as well. But hey, at least it has facebook and the Zune UI cobbled together with a microfiche.

wow, way to take a BIG step back mico$oft! are we sure these are the same people who gave us windows 7?

Serenity76 said,

Nope. Nope. And add no 'copy' and 'paste' to that list as well. But hey, at least it has facebook and the Zune UI cobbled together with a microfiche.

Considering they didn't talk about features at all and only showed the UI you seem to be pretty damn sure about this. Not that I agree at all mind you. I think you're pretty far off the mark.

Serenity76 said,

Nope. Nope. And add no 'copy' and 'paste' to that list as well.

Source please. Oh wait, you're just trolling. Don't want to disturb you. Please continue.

Serenity76 said,

Nope. Nope. And add no 'copy' and 'paste' to that list as well. But hey, at least it has facebook and the Zune UI cobbled together with a microfiche.


What!? Are they trying to emulate the early iPhone flaws again? Seriously, it must have clipboard support? :S

dr_crabman said,

Source please. Oh wait, you're just trolling. Don't want to disturb you. Please continue.

http://www.mobilecrunch.com/2010/02/15/first-impressions-windows-mobile-7-now-known-as-windows-phone/

"As far as I could tell, there is currently no copy/paste functionality. We were told that “developers will hear more about that” at Microsoft’s MIX conference next month, though it was implied that it would be about why copy and paste “won’t be necessary” rather than when it was coming."

As for the flash portion, it's confirmed on the main page here. The multitasking portion, google it, you'll find ample information.

Oh, wait, I just read other sites than Neowin. Sorry I disturbed you. Please continue.

Serenity76 said,

http://www.mobilecrunch.com/2010/02/15/first-impressions-windows-mobile-7-now-known-as-windows-phone/

"As far as I could tell, there is currently no copy/paste functionality. We were told that “developers will hear more about that” at Microsoft’s MIX conference next month, though it was implied that it would be about why copy and paste “won’t be necessary” rather than when it was coming."

As for the flash portion, it's confirmed on the main page here. The multitasking portion, google it, you'll find ample information.

Oh, wait, I just read other sites than Neowin. Sorry I disturbed you. Please continue.

You amaze me with you inablility to understand that MS is just showing the base UI in these shots and this build that they're letting you mess with at MWC. Just because you don't see something in there now doesn't mean it's gone. Jumping the gun much? How about everyone wait for MiX? Now there's an idea.

Serenity76 said,
I just can't see people waiting around another year for this thing.

Who says anyone has to wait for it? People's contracts are constantly expiring and being renewed for new devices. Some people are eligible for an upgrade and won't wait, some will, and some will become eligible around the time it comes out.

Serenity76 said,
I just can't see people waiting around another year for this thing.

I agree. Now that the cat is out of the bag, Apple can release its bag of tricks in the summer with the new iPhone. If history repeats itself (which it does), first to market with a solid product (doesn't have to be perfect) wins.

donkeyman said,

I agree. Now that the cat is out of the bag, Apple can release its bag of tricks in the summer with the new iPhone. If history repeats itself (which it does), first to market with a solid product (doesn't have to be perfect) wins.


Are you saying that just because you want Apple to have some higher level of success? It's really not so simple now that people have more viable alternatives come this holiday season, and just because you can't wait for something, doesn't mean other people won;t be waiting for it.

That does for most part look like crap quite frankly especially the amateur start menu thing they'd have been better sticking to the honeycomb display. The animations are pretty crap, screen real estate usage is crap - is there a need on each menu for example to have PEOPLE in huge text across what looks to be at least 15-20% of the top of the screen ? what is the point in that ?... Zune UI is good but certainly not in this context and not for phone operation. Get HTC UI designers to help Microsoft with winmo cause they really need it by the looks of things if they even want to stand any chance what so ever in mobile market.

Digitalx said,
That does for most part look like crap quite frankly especially the amateur start menu thing they'd have been better sticking to the honeycomb display. The animations are pretty crap, screen real estate usage is crap - is there a need on each menu for example to have PEOPLE in huge text across what looks to be at least 15-20% of the top of the screen ? what is the point in that ?... Zune UI is good but certainly not in this context and not for phone operation. Get HTC UI designers to help Microsoft with winmo cause they really need it by the looks of things if they even want to stand any chance what so ever in mobile market.

i agree htc needs to step in and help them...badly.

lmao...the interface looks like sh** as i said. this is not going over well and ppcgeeks or xda at all. i can see all the winmo users jumping ship to android as we speak. as i said balmer can polish a turd but it still won't save winmo.

fixxxer2010 said,
lmao...the interface looks like sh** as i said. this is not going over well and ppcgeeks or xda at all. i can see all the winmo users jumping ship to android as we speak. as i said balmer can polish a turd but it still won't save winmo.

Alot of irrelivent and unfounded garbage in this post.

fixxxer2010 said,

it's called my opinion and the truth.

When is someones opinion the truth? You seem to have the concept wrong or something.

GP007 said,

When is someones opinion the truth? You seem to have the concept wrong or something.

search ppcgeeks and xda, engadet and see the peoples responses.

fixxxer2010 said,

search ppcgeeks and xda, engadet and see the peoples responses.

That's funny since I did swing by engadget, and they loved it, also comments are off so there are no responses from people there at all.

I love how my Zune HD is organized. I think I'll go back to Windows Mobile when '7 comes out. Now, to justify that purchase.

freak180 said,
Finally a complete new UI

yeah a compete piece of crap. no wonder it will only run on brand new, huge spec phones. to me the UI is horrid looking.

fixxxer2010 said,

yeah a compete piece of crap. no wonder it will only run on brand new, huge spec phones. to me the UI is horrid looking.

Thanks for that. At least you know you'll have an iPhone or some droid to use.

Here is the UI demo on this website also there is a youtube embedded video.
http://www.windowsphone7series.com/

donkeyman said,
Give me more tiles please. Showing 2.5 columns of tiles will eventually annoy me.

It'll be interesting to see just how you can tweak that as well. I know you can move them around, maybe you can show 3? Or 4? If it can scale them that is. We'll know all this at MiX.

You Apple-Fanatics - please give it up with the Iphone UI. It's boring and square! Yeah its an easy to understand but WOW you can move some tiles around to rearrange the same boring interface. I have an Iphone - I jailbroke it to change up the color schemes and themes. It was boring me. No interaction. Open an APP - close that APP to get to another APP - close the APP - get to another APP. WOW! NOT.

I for one see incredible potential for WinMo 7. At least this time MS is telling the phone manufacturers - STAY ON COURSE with our specs.

I love the Zune HD and I am glad they are bringing the experience to WinMo 7.

GO MS!

Must agree here, i have a iPhone and am heavily considering dropping it for this (providing it turns out to be okay).

Jailbroke my iPhone, as it is boring. That grey chrome bar at the bottom bugs me..

+1, iPhone looks very utilitarian and simple compared to WP7. Sure iPhone does everything ok (except multitasking and flash) but having things more integrated like they are here is much more useful. I've jailbroken my iPhone but it's still nothing like this (also, this is true for Android)
Plus, Xbox, Zune and Facebook are all really important. Also, search is looking much more integrated.
I suspect iPhone 4 OS will get loads of new features but I would be surprised if it's anything near the sophistication of this.

mrmomoman said,
You Apple-Fanatics - please give it up with the Iphone UI. It's boring and square! Yeah its an easy to understand but WOW you can move some tiles around to rearrange the same boring interface. I have an Iphone - I jailbroke it to change up the color schemes and themes. It was boring me. No interaction. Open an APP - close that APP to get to another APP - close the APP - get to another APP. WOW! NOT.

I for one see incredible potential for WinMo 7. At least this time MS is telling the phone manufacturers - STAY ON COURSE with our specs.

I love the Zune HD and I am glad they are bringing the experience to WinMo 7.

GO MS!


++1

Tech Star said,
Not impressed. I was hoping to something closer to Android and the iPhone OS.

Might not want.

If MS just took parts from those then everyone would yet again rip into them for "me too" and "copying". Now when they do something different and more inline with their own UI work it's not good either?

Man, talk about having it hard.

GP007 said,

If MS just took parts from those then everyone would yet again rip into them for "me too" and "copying". Now when they do something different and more inline with their own UI work it's not good either?

Man, talk about having it hard.

I'm sorry, I didn't realize that whatever they made I had to like. I hate the Zune interface and this resembles that, which I don't really like. I welcome the much needed changes, but I just can't get into liking the UI.

Tech Star said,

I'm sorry, I didn't realize that whatever they made I had to like. I hate the Zune interface and this resembles that, which I don't really like. I welcome the much needed changes, but I just can't get into liking the UI.

Good. Now you have 2 other choices: iPhone OS and Android. It's nice having a choice. If neither works for you, you could always learn to code and port a distro of Linux onto your device.

donkeyman said,

Good. Now you have 2 other choices: iPhone OS and Android. It's nice having a choice. If neither works for you, you could always learn to code and port a distro of Linux onto your device.

I never said I hated Windows Mobile, I just said I didn't like the current UI. I have WinMo 6.1 on my phone right now and before I make my decision on my next phone I think I may need to use this hands on before I decide.

GP007 said,

If MS just took parts from those then everyone would yet again rip into them for "me too" and "copying". Now when they do something different and more inline with their own UI work it's not good either?

Man, talk about having it hard.


Yeah, what a shocker - there are both fans of the iPhone layout and "something new".

This is true for any software developer in the world. We have different opinions.

martinDTanderson said,
Does anyone know what resolution the OS is running at, and what DPI?

No, they did say something about the screen, what type it was, but I forget. I think it's 800x480 or 400, I forget. The phone should be able to do 720p vids like the ZuneHD though and all that.

We'll have to wait till MiX next month to get all the details.

GP007 said,
No, they did say something about the screen, what type it was, but I forget. I think it's 800x480 or 400, I forget. The phone should be able to do 720p vids like the ZuneHD though and all that.

We'll have to wait till MiX next month to get all the details.

WVGA (~800x400)was mentioned in one of the videos. However, I believe it's still dependent on the device.

I quite like the look of this... something I would actually enjoy using! It will no doubt be much better when it actually gets released.

Ricksterm said,
I quite like the look of this... something I would actually enjoy using! It will no doubt be much better when it actually gets released.

Yeah, i'm glad I waited now and didn't buy a new phone back in Dec.

Benjamin Rubenstein said,
Looks too slow for me to take it seriously. I also feel like it lacks the right feeling. It just seems like a Zune with some extra features.

That's an early build and isn't up to speed yet.

.Neo said,

Did Microsoft explain that somewhere?

Yes, in the video the guy has said it's an older build on the phone he's using. You did watch it right?

looks really poor. at the contacts with 'People' as the header, you need to scroll left to see the whole word(@ 0.47secs from the vid)

kaffra said,
looks really poor. at the contacts with 'People' as the header, you need to scroll left to see the whole word(@ 0.47secs from the vid)
It's a fluid layout - it covers multiple windows.

i.e. it's intentional.

kaffra said,
looks really poor. at the contacts with 'People' as the header, you need to scroll left to see the whole word(@ 0.47secs from the vid)

Like Kirkburn said, it's intentional. They overlap things off the screen to let you know that there is more that can be accessed.

ew2x4 said,

Like Kirkburn said, it's intentional. They overlap things off the screen to let you know that there is more that can be accessed.


i know but it doesnt look that good, especially on the other demo its was a longer word 'music devices' or something like that. after scrolling to the right you see 'usic devi' which doesnt seem quite right to me.

i'm not a big fan of the "blue" blocks, i wish they just copied the Zune colours :)

I hope they add themes into it! That would totally own the iPhone UI!

Andrew Lyle said,
i'm not a big fan of the "blue" blocks, i wish they just copied the Zune colours :)

I hope they add themes into it! That would totally own the iPhone UI!

I've seen shots with different colors, I think it'll let you change them to w/e color you might want actually. Themes will be interesting to see as well. They did say it's very extensible.

GP007 said,
I've seen shots with different colors, I think it'll let you change them to w/e color you might want actually. Themes will be interesting to see as well. They did say it's very extensible.
Yup, fully customizable tile colours.

Andrew Lyle said,
That would totally own the iPhone UI!

Yep, because the vast majority of users are extremely interested in tweaking interfaces...

Oh wait...

.Neo said,

Yep, because the vast majority of users are extremely interested in tweaking interfaces...

Oh wait...

I think there are a lot of people who complain about the iPhone not being customizable.

Get back under your rock.

So wait. After 2 years of hype for WinMo 7 and months of hype for this one event, they are still at an early 'prototype' and are targetting the end of this years. What are those 1000's of developers doing?

Creating an entire mobile OS from the ground up may take longer than you think. And sadly the amount of developers working on a project does not necessarily mean faster development time.

Shadrack said,
So wait. After 2 years of hype for WinMo 7 and months of hype for this one event, they are still at an early 'prototype' and are targetting the end of this years. What are those 1000's of developers doing?

Regardless of how ready the OS is, MS has to account for the time needed for devs to make and ship new phones, and to give outside devs the time to make apps. People will be waiting for MiX to get an SDK and so on so they can start working. Then when holiday 2010 hits (I expect phones in November) devs will have made a good number of apps/widgets/tiles ready and up on the marketplace when they hit the shop.

You can't just push out the OS without all the other stuff and have people buy them then wait for apps/services. Those need to be ready before you ship.

Pharos said,
Creating an entire mobile OS from the ground up may take longer than you think. And sadly the amount of developers working on a project does not necessarily mean faster development time.

Except for the fact that it looks like they took the Zune HD UI and tacked on some phone features and mobile networking, sure. I'd agree with you there.

Serenity76 said,

Except for the fact that it looks like they took the Zune HD UI and tacked on some phone features and mobile networking, sure. I'd agree with you there.

So a brand new OS is just the UI now? You know way more has to get done to get that sorta deep intergration with different PC and cloud data going into those hubs they demoed. It's not just taking the ZuneHD UI and porting it over then adding some phone features. Seriously guys, think about this a bit more.

Seems very fluid in the transitions and the "hubs" the layout, once in the hubs looks great but the home screen still needs some work...but they do have until late 2010 to nail that down

bdsams said,
Seems very fluid in the transitions and the "hubs" the layout, once in the hubs looks great but the home screen still needs some work...but they do have until late 2010 to nail that down

I think the home screen is fine if you don't want alot going on there, just a few tiles for stuff you do often. I expect to see lots of widget'esc tiles pop up that show info on there like weather and so on, so you can have those at the top and then scroll down for tiles for apps and so on.

Please, BEFORE writing sillyness, watch the videos on microsoft presspass site.
It's an AMAZING smartphone OS and a smart move from microsoft to start from scratch and mixing with Zune HD.

Looks like a bigger, laggier version of my Zune HD, with phone features tacked on. Curious what the marketplace will bring, since the Zune HD still only 16 apps available since launch. Oh well..

If thats the start UI that they plan for launch... I'm not impressed. Whats with the big black bar down the right? And why such big plain squares?

jasqid said,
If thats the start UI that they plan for launch... I'm not impressed. Whats with the big black bar down the right? And why such big plain squares?

The black bar could change or w/e, but I think it gives you a clean place you scroll up and down without having the fear of pressing a tile by mistake.

jasqid said,
If thats the start UI that they plan for launch... I'm not impressed. Whats with the big black bar down the right? And why such big plain squares?

Hoping for better icons myself. Those look horribly plain and tacky. :/

Transitions are all very nice, but the interface seems a bit confusing. Compared to the iPhone or Android, this isn't nearly good enough. But there is still time for much improvement of course.

Shadow Dragon said,
Transitions are all very nice, but the interface seems a bit confusing. Compared to the iPhone or Android, this isn't nearly good enough. But there is still time for much improvement of course.

I don't know, why do you think it's confusing? I haven't used a ZuneHD personally but just looking at the videos there's big text on everything that you can read clearly and so on. And then you also have pictures that popup as well, like if you pin a contact on there the picture of that contact will show.

I honestly don't see how this is any more complex then trying to randomly find icons to start apps if you don't know what icon the app has from the start.

Shadow Dragon said,
Transitions are all very nice, but the interface seems a bit confusing. Compared to the iPhone or Android, this isn't nearly good enough. But there is still time for much improvement of course.

Yeah, this is my feeling too. It's different alright, and looks "fresh", but at the same time I'm pretty confused by the unorthodox thought behind it. It looks very flexible though. I think it's about the home screen not having to be about specific objects like apps, but can be about other things too... Or something. :S

Edited by Northgrove, Feb 15 2010, 9:19pm :

Shaun_ said,
Seems a little laggy in touch responce

Like he said in the video, this is still an early build of the OS. I'm assuming all those kinks will be worked out be the time it's ready to launch.

Shaun_ said,
Seems a little laggy in touch responce

This is just a prototype, not the actual telephone.

Zune HD is very responsive, so I don't think the telephones will be any different.

Quick Shot said,

Like he said in the video, this is still an early build of the OS. I'm assuming all those kinks will be worked out be the time it's ready to launch.

I think that phone in question, which seems to be his own personal test phone is using an older build than the one used in the keynote which didn't have any lag at all actually.

ricknl said,

This is just a prototype, not the actual telephone.

Zune HD is very responsive, so I don't think the telephones will be any different.

I would have to concur. I also thought the demos of the Zune HD were flat and slow, but after spending time with one, it makes other products in its class seem lethargic.

I also was suprised how much 'intelligence' is working behind the Zune HD interface, as it is not just taking touches and clicks and apply a bit of physics to the content, but pays attention to finger pressure (Variance in touch spot size) and uses these metrics as well to create a pretty impressive Touch UI that seems to 'get' what you are doing better than other devices. Even on the Web pages and Apps, I was surprised how easily I could click on a pixel size button or link and the Zune would just nail it everytime.

So I don't see Microsoft going 'backwards' with the Phone interface, and even if it just holds to the Zune HD features of navigation and responsiveness they will have a credible product people will like once they pick it up and try it compared to other phone/player touch UIs out there.

Edited by thenetavenger, Feb 15 2010, 5:06pm :

.Neo said,

It seems extremely laggy. That's a real shame.

Lagging? Maybe your computer can't play flash videos smoothly. The only problem I saw were that some hubs weren't popping up correctly but of course, it is an early build. Looks terrific btw. Hopefully there is a model with a flip out keyboard on release, I hate typing on my current touchscreen WM Phone.

Shaun_ said,
Seems a little laggy in touch responce

http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/presskits/windowsphone/videoGallery.aspx

Looks a lot better here (Starts at about 1:40:00)

I think the UI could do with a few changes, maybe themes for the home tiles, to change their shape/colour. Other than that it's looking very impressive.

Edited by Minimoose, Feb 16 2010, 8:58am :