windows 7 phone

Secret reveal of Microsoft’s iTunes killer

Xhack: I finally hate Windows Live.

A few weeks ago, someone managed to get access to my Xbox Live gamertag, and charge nearly $130 to my account via Paypal. I might not have noticed except I saw the Paypal emails and knew for damn sure I hadn’t made any paypal payments in the last 7 days.

It took me a little work to find a billing history, but sure enough, my Xbox Live account had mad two big Microsoft-point buys and spent the resulting points on several games… All while I was nowhere near an Xbox.

Thanks to Microsoft’s “live” single-login concept, reporting this issue means my Xbox, Zune and Windows Phone are all kaput…

Battery low

This new phone does see a lot more action than my old phone, but my one standing issue with it now is the short battery life.

This seems to be peculiar to my unit, so it is probably my fault for not giving it a good clean charge before using it. Worse, I started charging it off a flaky USB connection in a rental car on its first day, causing it to go flat repeatedly.

There is a 2.x times lifetime battery option I’m gonna pick up.

While writing this post on my phone, i finally noticed what makes this on-screen keyboard really work: the autocomplete/autocorrect assign high value to the ley positions. So if you type ‘rgw’ then ‘the’ is option #1, and so on even for some really gnarly typos :)

Posted from WordPress for Windows Phone


It’s not that I was dissatisfied with my Motorola Droid, I was simply intrigued by the much maligned Windows Phone. I tend to be an equal opportunities hater of computer software/tech, although I’m not perfect(*1), just differently flawed than the mainstream of compsci bloggers. Indeed, it was the promise that I could exchange my phone within 14 days of purchase that made me decide to take the Windows 7 phone for a spin(*2).

All in all, I’m a convert: I enjoy my Windows 7 Phone; a pleasure to use. I may hate the crap out of the Marketplace, still, for all that it is filled with the most annoying rubbish cluttering and obscuring the gems therein, but in almost every other sense, after many years of phonephobia, I now have a phone that I love every last excuse to interact with.

If you never get your hands on a Windows Phone 7 (wp7) device, everything you see and hear about WP7 is likely to confirm that it is Microsoft’s desperate attempt to rip off iPhone.

The iPhone is clearly Microsoft’s primary competition, having given WP7 a try (CAUTION! the still for that cnet review is very scary, man hands + dress = where is this going?), I have to eat humble pie and conceed that Microsoft have actually done their own thing here…

Android to Win7: Day 5&6

I don’t see how this can be a factor, but until Tuesday I was using the usb cable that came with my old Droid to charge my new phone. So I switched over to the one that actually came with the Trophy. Yesterday and today I’ve made fairly heavy use of the phone, tried out a few games, etc, and I’m seeing quite acceptable battery usage.

Indeed, yesterday I finally shut the phone down around 11.30pm after reading on it for over an hour with Amazon Kindle, and it had barely touched the battery after a full day’s usage.

I needed to use the Droid for something today, and rediscovered that it too has screens that won’t rotate for you — such as the desktop. So I wonder why that was so annoying to me on the new phone? Maybe I expected it to be fixed?

Yes, there are a few minor things that still bother me about the Win7 phone such as the uncertainty of where pressing Back will take you…

But I also spent a while tinkering with the ‘TouchStudio‘, the phone’s visual scripting system, and knocked up a little app that reports on Battleground Europe server status for me:

action ServerStatus()
xmlData := web->download(“”)
domRoot := web->xml(xmlData)
foreach server in domRoot->children(“r”) do
name := server->attr(“name”)
state := server->attr(“state”)
text := name || ” is ” || state
text->post to wall

It’s pretty noddy, and pretty basic, but it was a doozy to construct (since, with the exception of naming variables and typing in text fields like the URL) it’s all done with phone taps :)

Today’s chances of switching back to a droid phone? 10%.

Android to Win7: Day 4

Today I seem to have started getting past my initial transitional cloudiness.

When it comes to user interfaces, people tend to expect me to go for very basic, utilitarian styles. But my Windows boxes all run the native UI – I’m not one of those folks who tries to make his Windows 7 look as much like Windows 3.1 as possible (*cough*bloo*cough*).

The Windows 7 Phone UI pleases me greatly. It has a sleek elegance with a sense of depth and a pinch of tounge in cheek: tap and hold a tile and it tilts a little depending on the exact positioning of your finger.

To me, the result is a sense of tangibility, a touch of magic. It feels so much less like stabbing at an electronic display of cyberspace and more like a magical koi pond within which things will swim to the top whenever you touch the surface.

Android to Win7: Day 3, addendum

I used Bloo’s charger to recharge my phone, but I still didn’t do a whole lot, other than show a few people that I had the phone.

Despite my grumblings so far, there is just something about Windows 7 Phone that I like. I’m largely trying to annotate my transfer from Droid to Win7 here. There is no intent to belittle  or worship either Android or Windows 7; just document a transition made on an impulse :- the phone I was going to upgrade to wasn’t in stock, but the Win 7 was and they told me I could return it within 14 days for a different phone.

I went Android before purely because Verizon was a good carrier choice for me at the time, and Verizon didn’t carry iPhone. If it weren’t for the 14-day return deal, I would have stayed with ‘droid – better the devil you know.

Tomorrow I’m going to try and make a bit deeper use of the phone. I have it charging up tonight and I’ll leave it charging until I get up in the morning.


Android to Win7: Day 3

This entry intentionally left blank — charged the phone up to full before going to bed, in the morning the battery is down to under 10%. Either the battery is defective or this phone gets about 10 hours per 14 hour charge.


Android to Win7: Day 2

I didn’t get much use out of the phone today, so it both gained and lost points. I actually spent a large portion of the day at the DMV, which had fairly lousy signal, and since I have next to nothing installed so far, there wasn’t a lot I could do that didn’t want a connection. Also, as you’ll see further down, battery life curbed my activities.

The puzzle of the back-buttonless browser seems to be solved: since the browser’s “…” menu has a Forward option, I figured there had to be a way to go back. Sometimes the phone’s hardware Back button, the one I said was alt-tab, may take you to the previous page.

Android to Win7: Day 1

My Verizon contract 2 year anniversary came up yesterday and my Droid (original) was ready for retirement. So, we went to the Verizon store and despite briefly toying with the idea of a Windows 7 phone, I was sold on the Droid 3 thanks to it’s delightful fold out keyboard.

Only when the clerk told me they had none in-stock, due to a bogo offer, I decided to take the HTC Trophy Windows 7 phone for a spin. I can return it within 14 days if I’m not sold.

So far it’s definitely a love-hate affair.