One of the problems with the recent raft of Windows Phone 7 handsets has been trying to tell them apart. Microsoft has kept such a tight rein on the specification for each handset running its reborn operating system that there isn’t really a great deal of room for manufacturers to manœuvre. They’ve all got a minimum of 8GB of …
Article states: "Microsoft has kept such a tight rein on the specification for each handset running its reborn operating system that there isn’t really a great deal of room for manufacturers to manœuvre."
That's not true at all - MS set a *minimum* set of standards, which manufacturers are free to exceed if they wish.
I thought ...
that Microsoft wrote the drivers and therefore, you were indeed limited to devices they had drivers for...
...not sure about that, but it's not like MS only wrote one set of drivers - OEMs can obviously still select the size of the screen, camera type & quality (e.g. the Mozart has a xenon flash at 8mp, whereas others have an LED flash and 5mp), amount of on-board memory (up to 32Gb is doable, apparently) presence of a physical keyboard (or not) etc. as well as non-driver related things like the style & quality of the phone's case.
AFAIK, Just about the only thing I think the OEMs don't choose (at the moment) is the processor, which has to be a Snapdragon (though it seems future releases will support a broader range of processors).
The real shame is that the OEMs didn't go all-out, though their lack of faith in WP7 at this stage is sorta understandable.
I've said it before, but I'll repeat it: what a great time to be in the market for a nice touch screen phone. As long as you're careful not to get one of the cheapo nasty ones - the world's your mollusc.
What I don't understand is why it seems to be only Apple that makes any kind of effort to develop a fully rounded product?
We have LG here with a phone that has a metallic casing for a premium phone feel ... but then forget to continue to design aesthetic and so tacks on a nasty Windows button.
Then they add the "Play to" feature which streams music and video from the phone to another device ... but forget to implement it the other (and arguably more useful) way around.
Then they add the "ScanSearch" app ... but forget to include enough data so that you're better off just using the maps application.
So three half-assed attempts to differentiate and none of them actually go the full mile.
I've worked in the mobile industry for over 10 years and I'm still constantly amazed about the low level of thought and effort that is put into these improvements.
Is this the same Apple...
... whose "fully rounded product" wasn't correctly designed for the human hand?
LG may have fallen short of perfection here, but at least when trying to design a wonderful, stylish phone they realised that the "phone" part was the most important.
Trying to be different: LG's Optimus 7
But looks just like any other phone on the orange network. Severly scarred by operator customisations.
"Severly scarred by operator customisations"... I know what you mean, but have you actually used one? I have a WP7 on Orange (though it's a Mozart rather than an Optimus) and any Orange apps I don't like get booted off the "Start" screen in a jiffy (they'll stay in the list of apps in case I ever need them - it turns out the Orange Wednesdays app is actually kinda nifty). Similarly, you can change the Orange default colour scheme (though the Orange apps will remain their original colour).
... the bottom line is, WP7 was designed so that any network operator or OEM add-ons (e.g. the HTC hub) can be retained by the user if they're useful, but can't "force" themselves onto the user's Start screen if he doesn't want them there. Hence "scar" is probably the wrong word. "Creased" is mre like it.
Not sure DLNA is a particular selling point, as Android does DNLA - at least my HTC Desire does (Menu > Select Player in Music, and I can push straight to a Sonos device for example)
The buttons on this phone were the reason that I opted for the HTC trophy.