Recently, I was given the opportunity to fly out to NYC, shack up at a nice little hotel in the Fashion District, and attend a Windows press event in an art gallery in Chelsea. Yes, my life is pretty baller. To add to the excitement, I was able to get an inside scoop on the new Windows Phone 7, which is in stores now and looking like a pretty nice addition to your technology arsenal.
I’m a loyal iPhone user, but I must admit – the Windows Phone 7 was pulling out some pretty cool tricks, including your own personal avatar (woot woot). And today, I’m standing in as your personal messenger. I hereby introduce to you: Windows Phone 7. Hey iPhone? You may have to scooch over a little bit…
Here are the features of the new Windows Phone 7 that may tickle your technological fancy:
Informative lock screen: In a lot of ways, the lock screen resembles iPhone’s. However, it lets you give your friends individual tiles on the start screen (essentially, you add your friends as apps) and it aggregates everything they do! Yes, from texts to Facebook and Twitter updates, you can follow it all in one handy little place. Creepy? Maybe, but totally satisfying.
Facebook Integration/Social Media Hub: Microsoft really took our Facebook/Twitter addictions to heart with a Social Media Hub, which allows you to pull up a friend’s contact information and contact them in your avenue of choice: posting on their FB wall, Tweeting @ them, texting them or, if you still even do this, calling them.
Search Button: Unlike the iPhone, “search” is integrated right into the overall Windows Phone 7 design. So if you’re looking for some grub nearby, you can just type in “thai food” and get a Bing map, directions, restaurant reviews and hours instantly. Just swipe right through the options to see all the results. How informative of you, Microsoft!
E-mail/Outlook: The Windows phone not only adds events from your email, but it tells you automatically if there is a conflict with the built-in ‘Check Conflicts’ workflow so you don’t schedule dinner with the girls at the same time as that dreaded group meeting. And if there is a slight conflict, there is even an “I’ll be late” button you can send right to your contacts. (Though I think they should change it to “I’ll be fashionably late.”) The spellcheck on Outlook is an extra perk. It works just like Microsoft Office’s, and gives you multiple options for corrections (instead of auto-correcting!). Yes, now when I type ‘shit’ into my e-mail, it won’t come up as ‘shizoka!’
EA Games: Um, they have The Sims. Whoever added this feature, they have my blessing.
Music Hub: The Windows Phone 7 uses Zune Pass (boo, no Grooveshark) and gives you easy access to content you play most and can auto-sync to deliver new content.
Photo Hub: Takes photos right from Facebook and brings them onto the live stream on your home screen. This is awesome because you don’t even have to waste your precious time signing on to Facebook to stalk your friends’ Halloween party pics.
Personal Avatar: If you’re super bored, you can create your own personal avatar. And if you’re a super avid gamer, you can receive special achievement points to buy new clothes, facial jewelery, and random items, like a VMA trophy. (Hey, I don’t judge.)
Texting: If you have huge fingers or drink too many Venti coffees, the text feature has an error correcting tab which, like the e-mail, will give you potential options instead of auto-correcting your words. Oh, and the phone has an emoticon button. Windows Phone 7 FTW!
Honestly, as a loyal iPhoner, the only thing I can see wrong with this guy is the copy/paste feature… because there isn’t one. But don’t fret – according to my sources, Windows will be coming out with one in early 2011. Even without it, though, this phone is definitely enough to rival the iPhone, especially when you realize it’s half the price!