Tag Archives: Zune

Windows Phone 7 Series

Microsoft just announced the next iteration of their Windows Mobile platform called Windows Phone.  This thing is going to be killer.  Also with Microsoft putting a restriction on the types of phones that are allowed to carry the 7 series, this ensures that the user will get nothing but a great experience.

I’m digging the home screen.  The big buttons show the most used apps.  No fancy widgets, no excess of application icons, just items that you only need and use.  If you’re into facebook, this has pretty much full integration with the os without having another app to launch.  This is a step, no a leap above the previous windows 6.5.3.  It has the elements of the Zune interface with some added new styles as well.

Another thing is the search.  I really love it.  I think for a mobile it’s better than google’s/apple’s integration.  It also seems to encompass more tasks than a regular search engine.  If you have to ask me, the phone’s web search is like six apps in one.

There are drawbacks though.  One is that it’s doesn’t seem like to have multitasking as of now.  There won’t be flash at launch too.  Also, it seems to be geared towards the social person and not the power users.   Then again, it’s too early as there were reports that there would be two version of the Windows phone. There would be one for the casual consumer and one for the business/power user where the later would have multitasking.   The biggest drawback though is that the Windows Phone 7 series won’t be in stores until the 4th quarter of this year.

Also check out this live demonstration:


Get Microsoft Silverlight

Courtesy of  Windowsteamblog.com

Zune HD: The Revolution Begins

p_zuneHD

In the last couple of days, more specifically yesterday, there have been a lot of buzz with the new Zune HD.  Now don’t take this portable media player lightly.  For those Apple loyalist this article is not for you.  I don’t need to hear how Apple is this and that and Microsoft is this and that.

Now why do I call it a revolution?  If you look at the videos (look below), you will be in awe.  Interface is very smooth.  Thanks to the power of the Tegra chip,  it is able to produce those fancy graphics.  I’ve never seen anything like that that was that smooth for a mobile device.  Now take this for what you will.  Remember this Zune is running off from what I hear a version of Windows CE.   You’ve seen WinMo 6.5.  They are experimenting with the UI.  It’s starting to look like the Zune HD.  If they keep building it with the better hardware what will we get?  The answer is the future Windows phone (Windows Mobile 7).   This is only the beginning of what’s to come.

Now some may say that the Zune UI is bad or all flash no usability.  What do I see, something totally different.  Creating a UI based on words alone.  I don’t think I’ve ever seen anything like that, but I’m sure there will still be some icons.  Those who critisize the word UI, I ask you this, what so hard about reading words.  Are people that illiterate that people have graduated school and don’t know how to read.  Also some say that its all a bunch of words and you don’t know which to press.  It’s quite simple, the selectable text are those that are pure white or whatever color (at it’s full brightness).  Those that are not are faded into the back.  Also to go the previous screen, you just press the word that is cropped on the top,  how simple is that. It’s a pretty big back button too.  I think it a pretty slick UI.  When Microsft starts implementing this in their Windows Mobile OS (specifically WinMo 7), competitors better be worried especially when it’s paired with Tegra or a higher end hardware.

Don’t forget it not just about Zune and Microsoft.  When the Tegra hardware or other high-end hardware is widely available we’ll see some great stuff at a great battery life too.  From Sony (Crossbars smoothness) to HTC’s revamped Touchflo to Andriod.

To Microsoft and the Zune designers/programmers props for thinking out of the box and creating something many people want.  Microsoft looks like will have a good late 2009 – 2010 with release of Windows7, Zune HD, and Windows Mobile 7.   The Zune HD comes out in mid September in 16 and 32 gig variants.  Features include  720p video playback, browser, Microsoft Marketplace, artist bio,  AMOLED capacitive touchscreen, and HD radio.  Did I miss other things?  Let me know.    Now if you have a spare Zune HD, I’ll gladly review it.

Here’s another video to drool over.  Videos courtesy of  Crunchgear and PC MAG.

Visit the Zune Site HERE.