The Windows Phone wiki last edited by Marino on 03/14/13 07:10AM View full history

Overview

Former Windows Phone logo

Windows Phone is Microsoft's newest mobile OS. Unlike previous releases of this OS, that have been aimed more at a business market, Windows Phone is geared toward the consumer audience (instead of just the business world). With this new OS came a new UI. Microsoft's 'Metro' user Interface integrates many other Microsoft services like Xbox Live and Zune as well as popular social network sites.

When it comes to multimedia Windows Phone 7 has two hubs, Music/Video and Pictures. From the 'Pictures' hub, you can view Facebook and Windows Live photo albums. You can also upload photos to popular social network sites. Interesting thing about this Pictures hub is that you can view and comment photos from Facebook without actually leaving that hub, so there is no loading separate Facebook app or a page in the web browser required.

Interface

A typical Windows Phone 7 Start Screen

Windows Phone has a specific user interface that goes by the name of Metro that is similar to Zune HD's interface. Metro has a very minimalist design, focusing on big clear menus that are easy to select thanks to the phone's touch interface.

Metro is also customizable. Most of the customization can be done on the main screen. You can select anything from the phone, be it an application, website, a picture album or even a contact and put it on the home page. Whatever you have selected materializes as a big square or rectangle, called a Tile. Tiles can be moved around to suit your preference and some Tiles are connected to the internet, which are know as Live Tiles, and can receive real time updates.

A typical Windows Phone 8 Start Screen

Specific functionalities are separated into different hubs, which are accessible through the home screen. There are six different Hubs: Music + Video, People, Photos, Games, Microsoft Office and the Marketplace.

Microsoft introduced its new start screen on June 20th, 2012 at the Windows Phone summit. The new interface allows the user to adjust the live tiles to small, medium, or large (double wide) views. Windows Phone 8 brings more accent colors.

Music + Video

The Music + Video part of Windows Phone is Xbox music. Here you can listen to music, podcasts and watch videos, including movies. Your music collection is wirelessly synchronized from your PC and you can download new songs from the marketplace as well as stream digital radio off the internet. You can also listen to FM radio. The radio works only with headphones due to using the wire as the antenna. WP is also compatible with the Xbox music Pass.

To access Music Video you must select it from the home screen. You will arrive at the Xbox music menu where you will have the following choices: Music, Videos, Podcasts, Radio and Marketplace. After selecting any of these (a white arrow shows up next to whatever you have selected) you can scroll from left to right using your finger. The first screen that will show up is what your listening to, the second is your music library where you can also scroll up and down and the third screen is the Marketplace that shows you things that are relevant to what you have been listening to. You can also share your music with your friends and use KidsSafe Tunes, an app that keeps explicit music away from young children. You can control the volume by pressing the volume buttons on the side of the phone.

People

People Hub

The People hub is comprised of your phone contacts, Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn friends, and contacts from your Windows Live Account. Each contact has a profile picture which is usually pulled from their Facebook profile picture. By selecting the Hub, your recent contacts appear. Slide your finger to the left and you can browse your entire contact list. You can quickly find contacts by hitting the letter beside his or her name (for example, the letter A) and the entire alphabet shows up and selecting a letter will bring you to all the contacts on your list that start with that letter. You can also sync contacts from a Gmail account.

In your contacts there is the Me section, that groups all your personal information. It groups your Facebook and Windows Messenger info. It's also where you can find your own number and can be accessed from your contacts page.

Pictures

Pictures Hub

Photos can be taken and stored on the phone in the Picture hub. You can view these photos in the hub in different ways. You can view them by most recent or you can sort them by date or by place, you can tag people and add pictures directly to Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn. You can also check your friend's pictures, view Facebook and Twitter, and caption your photos.

Xbox Live

Former Games Hub Interface

Xbox LIVE is incorporated into the Windows Phone OS, aiming to bring an Xbox 360-like gaming experience to a mobile platform. Games that support XBOX Live can make use of Xbox LIVE achievements, avatars, leaderboards, etc. The game hub has 4 different screens. The first is My Collection where you can view and easily select any of your games. The second is a What's New screen showing you all the hottest releases. The third screen is your Xbox Live profile where you can view your avatar, your friends list and your achievements. The final fourth screen is your Xbox Live inbox where you can accept invites.

As of 2/1/2012 there are 100 Xbox live game titles, with a new game added every week.

Microsoft Office

Office Hub

WP7 has a Microsoft Office hub. Office Mobile is meant to be an extension of the user's workplace. In this hub, you can find mobile versions of Word, Excel and Power Point. OneNote Mobile lets you edit and save your personal notes by adding pictures and recordings. SharePoint Workspace Mobile lets you share documents with colleagues while on the go.

Marketplace

Marketplace Hub

This final hub lets you download content directly onto your phone. You can download music, movies and apps. Apps can be free or cost a certain sum but there are usually demos for the paid apps. The Marketplace can be accessed from both your phone and the Zune PC software. Purchases can be paid for through your credit card or the cost added to your monthly phone fee. Apps are developed using Silverlight while games are developed with XNA. Both operate under .NET Compact Framework. Before being launched in the Marketplace, apps must be certified by Microsoft. As of December 2011, the marketplace has over 50,000 apps available for download.

Web Browsing

WP7 is equipped with Internet Explorer Mobile 9. It uses the same core browsing engine as IE9 for the desktop. You can open multiple tabs and add websites to your favorites and even pin websites to the start screen. At launch, WP is not compatible with Adobe Flash Player but it has been announced they are working on it.

Hardware

First-generation Devices

ImageDeviceRelease DateProcessorRAM/MemoryDisplayCameraCarrier(s)Differentiating Feature(s)

1891139-wp2_thumb.jpg

Dell Venue ProNovember 8, 20101 GHz512MB / 8GB4.1" AMOLED5MPAT&T, T-Mobile USAVertical Slide out QWERTY
1891142-wp5_thumb.jpgHTC 7 ProJanuary 17, 20111 GHz576MB / 8GB3.6" LCD5MPSprint, US Cellular, Cellular SouthHorizontal slide out QWERTY
1893881-wp13_thumb.pngHTC SurroundOctober 21, 20101 GHz448MB / 16GB3.8" LCD5MPAT&T, TELUSSlide out speaker with surround sound
1891138-wp1_thumb.jpgHTC TrophyOctober 21, 20101 GHz576MB / 8GB / 16GB3.8" Super LCD5MPVodafone UK, Australia, and NZ, Verizon
1893878-wp10_thumb.pngHTC 7 MozartOctober 21, 20101 GHz576MB / 8GB3.7" LCD8MPOrange U.K., TelstraMetal unibody design
1891134-wp6_thumb.jpgHTC HD7 / HD7SOctober 21, 20101 GHz576MB / 16GB4.3" LCD / SLCD5MPT-Mobile USA, O2 UK, Bell / AT&TLargest 1st gen WP7 screen
1893879-wp11_thumb.pngLG Optimus 7October 21, 20101 GHz512MB / 16GB3.8" LCD5MPTELUS, Vodafone UK, Optus

1891140-wp3_thumb.jpg

LG QuantumOctober 21, 20101 GHz512MB / 16GB3.5" LCD5MPAT&T, BellHorizontal slide out QWERTY, DNLA
1891141-wp4_thumb.jpgSamsung FocusOctober 21, 20101 GHz512MB / 8GB4.0" Super AMOLED5MPAT&T, RogersExpandable storage with microSD, thinnest 1st gen WP7

1891143-imageengine10_thumb.jpg

Samsung Omnia 7October 21, 20101 GHz512MB / 8GB4.0" Super AMOLED5MPOrange UK, T-Mobile UK, 3 UK, Optus

Second-generation Devices

ImageDeviceRelease DateProcessor SpeedRAM/MemoryDisplayCameraCarrier(s)Differentiating Feature(s)
Acer AllegroOctober 20111 GHz512MB / 8GB3.6" LCD5MPComes in black or white

1891136-wp8_thumb.jpg

HTC RadarOctober 20111 GHz512MB / 8GB3.8" Super LCD5MP / FFCAT&T, T-Mobile4G on T-Mobile, comes in black or white

1891135-wp7_thumb.jpg

HTC TitanOctober 20111.5 GHz512MB / 16GB4.7" Super LCD8MP / FFCAT&TLarge screen

2122790-wp25_thumb.png

HTC Titan IITBA 20121.5 GHz512MB / 16GB4.7" Super LCD16MP / FFCAT&T4G LTE
2128657-wp21_thumb.pngNokia Lumia 710November 20111.4 GHz512MB / 8GB3.7" LCD5MPComes in black or white, changeable back covers
2128656-wp20_thumb.pngNokia Lumia 800November 20111.4 GHz512MB / 16GB3.7" AMOLED8MPCarl Zeiss optics
2122795-wp24_thumb.pngNokia Lumia 900TBA 20121.4GHz512MB / 16GB4.3" AMOLED8MP / FFCAT&T4G LTE
2021739-wp1_thumb.pngSamsung Focus SNovember 6th 20111.4 GHz512MB / 16GB4.3" Super AMOLED+8MP / 1.3MP FFCAT&T4G, super thin
1967552-wp16_thumb.pngSamsung Omnia W / Focus FlashNovember 6th 20111.4 GHz512MB / 8GB3.7" Super AMOLED5MP / FFCAT&T4G
1916252-wp17_thumb.pngFujitsu Toshiba IS12TSeptember 20111GHz512MB / 32GB3.7" LCD13.3 MPKDDIDust and waterproof. comes in lime, pink or black
1916251-wp15_thumb.pngZTE TaniaOctober 20111Ghz512MB / 4GB4.3" LCD5MP

Third-generation Devices

ImageDeviceRelease dateProcessor SpeedRAM MemoryDisplayCameraCarrier(s)Differentiating feature(s)
Nokia Lumia 920November 4th 2012Dual-core 1.4GHz Snapdragon1GB4.5" IPS LCD full RGB (non pentile)8.7MPAT&TSuper sensitive touch screen
Floating lens image stabilization
Low light Pureview sensor
No motion blur scrolling
Comes in glossy yellow, matte grey, matte black, glossy red , matte cyan, or glossy white
Windows Phone 8
Samsung Ativ SN/AN/AN/A4.8" Super AMOLED HD8MP2300 mAh battery
Comes in Grey or black
Windows Phone 8
Nokia Lumia 820November 4th 2012Dual-core 1.4 GHz Snapdragon1GB4.3"8MPAT&T
Verizon
Swap-able color battery backs. Comes in yellow, orange, cyan, red, white, or black
Windows Phone 8
Minimum Hardware requirements
Capacitive, 4-point multi-touch screen with WVGA (800 x 480) resolution
Snapdragon QSD8X50, MSM7X30, and MSM8X55
DirectX9 rendering-capable GPU
256MB of RAM with at least 4GB of memory
Accelerometer with compass, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor and assisted GPS + optional gyroscope
5-megapixel camera w/ LED flash + optional front facing camera
3.5mm headphone jack, microUSB 2.0, WiFi 802.11 b / g support (n optional), FM radio tuner, Bluetooth
6 dedicated hardware buttons - back, start, search, 2-stage camera, power/sleep and volume up and down

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