Windows Phone 8.1 concept envisions serious polish

The guys over at 1800PocketPC have come up with a Windows Phone 8.1/Blue concept for what they hope will be included in the next update to the Windows Phone platform, and their design envisions some serious polish for Microsoft's smartphone operating system.

Included in their designs are an increase to the amount of tiles to a six-wide grid as well as a new super-large 6x4 tile, a "device center" which combines quick settings with a heavily-requested notification center, an "all apps" area that features lists and categories, improved cloud syncing of data and settings, and a first-party Files app that integrates local storage with SkyDrive.

Overall we have to say the concept is pretty impressive, and it's worth heading over to 1800PocketPC to see all the full mock-ups. Is this what you'd like to see when Microsoft finally reveals their plans for Windows Phone 8.1? Let us know what you'd like to see in the comments below.

Source: 1800PocketPC | Thanks for the tip, Saijo!

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Too busy, too many colours, info overload, ugly and makes me want to vomit. Pictures like that should come with a warning like flash photography warnings on TV.

Windows phone is so on the wrong track.

So cluttered and busy... ugly. I hate that home screen. I thought the current plain colored squares looked bad compared to full color detailed icons, but this makes it worse. I can't stand the look of this duplo os ui ...

If you can't beat your opponent, copy him (badly, apparently). Polish is the last thing I think when looking at this, what I think is "give me this free and I still would not use it"

looks like a WP launcher for Android. LOL. Kinda horrible, sorry.

Also, that app bar implementation looks like the one being used in Windows 8.
App bars in Windows Phone are always visible or semi-visible, with the "..." icon allowing you to open the app bar fully. App bars in Windows 8 are always fully hidden, and are brought up using edge swipe gestures.

Please please PLEASE don't mix the two. I actually like and prefer Windows Phone's app bar implementation over Windows 8's. I can't bear the thought of having to use edge swipes on my phone.

Polish is the last term that comes to mind by looking at this. Way too cluttered and *unpolished* rather...

Dot Matrix said,
Needs a Start Menu.

/s

No, it needs a desktop UI forced on it just incase someone might use a keyboard and mouse with their phone.

The desktop should load by default too.

Athernar said,

No, it needs a desktop UI forced on it just incase someone might use a keyboard and mouse with their phone.

Well, I know this is a joke, but I do want a desktop and desktop tile... this would be pretty awesome.

This is literally how I'd expect and Android device to look if it tried to copy Windows Phone. An imitation that misses the point and polish. There are some nice ideas though and I'm sure who ever made the concepts did put a lot of time into them

Doesn't look that stellar but the current Windows phone look is getting boring. After 2 years of owning different windows 8 devices, I am beginning to get the hang of this thing.

Definitely nice but to me,
1. The bottom part of the notification centre looks wierd and quite similar to android.
2. The file explorer could use sme polish...

I'm getting a feeling that it would be too cluttered; this concept is quite a depature from current simplicity created by MS. But i'm giving it a big yes for tutorial screens.

Initially looked ok but upon closer inspection just a lot of inconsistency. Say what you will about WP7/8, the design is consistent. This looks too busy/widgety/droidy for my taste. All WP8 needs is a few simple additions like the notification center and a file browser for mass media. The more options you throw at people (like droid) the more confusing it is.

Power users might relish in this but the average user does not. My mom has a droid and she makes phone calls, sends texts and might watch a video here and there.

WP is doing the right thing by appealing to the consumer in the long run. Leave it simple on the surface and if you want more options then dive in for those.

Please, NO.

I admire the effort but it diverges from the visual style.
Somewhat too noisy and too busy. It tries to bring Windows 8 a tad too much.

I like the top two designs, but I wish Microsoft would allow users to set the color for all the tiles. Having a lot of tiles in different colors can be a little busy.

You can set the colour already in Settings > Themes.
It's up to the devs to come up with transparent tile icons if they want so it uses the theme colour. I have many apps that already do, but most devs seem to choose their own colours/images. Which is great and preferable for certain apps, but ya lots of devs who have basic yet useful apps unnecessarily choose their own colours.

Gaffney said,
I like the look they have for the notification center, looks very polished.

Looks like a flatter version of the notification shade on my android phone. Not saying that's bad, because it is a good design.

onionjuice said,
wait WP 8 doesn't have a notification center? Do you just look on the tiles for ur recent stuff like in WP 7

Yeah pretty much There are lockscreen notifications and of course toast notifications as well though! Having a nice unified area like that one would be amazing albeit not entirely necessary. I actually really like all the parts of that concept but the start screen, as some others have said, there isn't enough negative space and I think thats one things that WP excels at. Having content stand out but not cluttered.

KEEN for Windows Phone Blue though!

Neobond said,
Just give us a notifications center and I'll be happy

Agreed. Since Microsoft said it was originally planned for WP8 but they ran out of time, I'm really hoping we see it in this update.

onionjuice said,
wait WP 8 doesn't have a notification center? Do you just look on the tiles for ur recent stuff like in WP 7

And hope that those tiles are actually working correctly (i.e., updating their info consistently).

Tom Chapman said,
Whoever did this needs to use mooooooorrrrrrrrrrrrrrrrre negative space. It is soooo busy.

Yeah, there are some nice ideas there, but contrary to the article, this lacks "polish"...

not only it's way too cluttered, it's actually ignoring all the Windows Phone design guidelines making it a complete mess like something you can find on Android with custom skins. It tries to appear "Metro", but it's not it at all.

I respect your opinion, but personally, I don't think it looks cluttered at all. I really like to have the biggest amount of options/apps with the lowest amount of touches needed.

I don't like having to open an app drawer to have access to my apps. On Android, all the apps I use the most are on my homescreen, and I only have one homescreen because I hate having to swype the screen to find what I need.

I hate excessive negative space, and so does a big part of the eastern community (compare chinese/japanese websites to their english counterparts)

M_Lyons10 said,

Yeah, there are some nice ideas there, but contrary to the article, this lacks "polish"...

The article title is nonsensical because Windows Phone has always been polished. This concept suggests features, not polish.

jakem1 said,

The article title is nonsensical because Windows Phone has always been polished. This concept suggests features, not polish.

Windows Phone is so polished, it's outselling the iPhone in Poland.

Enron said,

Windows Phone is so polished, it's outselling the iPhone in Poland.

It's probably because it cost £600 to buy an iPhone with a contract in Poland, whereas elsewhere it's free if you're eager to pay £25 bill for two years.

Enron said,

Windows Phone is so polished, it's outselling the iPhone in Poland.

It's probably because it cost £600 to buy an iPhone with a contract in Poland, whereas elsewhere it's free if you're eager to pay £25 bill for two years.

Enron said,
Windows Phone is so polished, it's outselling the iPhone in Poland.

Okay, you must be a redditor with all the one-liners you're drilling out.

Neobond said,
Yeah, I don't think the mega tile is needed and having six in a row is quite a lot as well, looks cluttered.

I know. I was fine with the original Start screen. Even making room for four tiles across was alright. But any more, and it's just getting ridiculous.