back to article Windows Phone 7: 'Different, delightful'... and unfinished

Microsoft has unveiled Windows Phone 7, stressing the phone's difference from other touchscreen devices, such as the iPhone and Android handsets. Company chief executive Steve Ballmer called Windows Phone 7 "different" no less than five times during his remarks at a company event in New York where Microsoft joined number-two …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Down


    the writer here is a very, very negative individual! i have never ready such a 'half empty' report - u must have a very sad, unfortunate, boring and highly uninteresting life - or are you a fanboy for some other O/S?!

    1. jai

      go on then

      go on then, tell us what's positive about this? what exactly has wp7 got that is going to set the world afire and make it the mobile OS of choice??

    2. Tzael

      Re: boring...

      I'm glad I'm not the only one who thinks that the author of this article is heavily biased against Microsoft. I used to enjoy unbiased articles on this site with the added satire and other humour. Lately though it seems many of the authors for The Register have their own agendas that go against straightforward propagation of facts. At least we've still got John Lettice, Lester Haines and Lewis Page providing us with good articles that provide humour and fact in decent quantities!

      Really don't know how the author missed the part of the presentation dedicated to the WP7 marketplace. Maybe he fell asleep or was too busy using his Android/iPhone/Blackberry at the time? :)

    3. mafoo

      Microsoft are just as excited

      See the joy and excitement flowing through the room as the phone is demonstrated to the Beeb.

      I particularly like the amazing exciting cutting edge Xbox live game that looks a lot like break out.

    4. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Good constructive criticism, there

      are you 12?

    5. Anonymous Coward

      "have never ready such a 'half empty' report"

      You have a 'half empty' event, you get a 'half empty' report.

      You want him to hype up the phone? You work for MS?


    6. Anonymous Coward

      @ boring

      Another (more probable?) explanation is that your hero Mr Ballmer had little worth saying and his comments were fully reporting - just like that internet thingy, MS are late to the party and Windows Phone 7 is a rush job to try and catch up.

      So they miss out little things (like backward compatability) to get their incomplete product out (AGAIN).

    7. Neil Greatorex

      It's not boring or negative, it's neutral

      You anonymous pillock.

      Unless you really are that stupid, I can only assume you're a shill. Bugger off.

      1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

        Re: It's not boring or negative, it's neutral

        It's hilarious how people here shout 'shill' at each other all the time. As if there aren't just people who hate or love stuff and like to spout about it on the internet.

        1. The BigYin

          @Sarah Bee

          You Register shill! :o)

          1. Sarah Bee (Written by Reg staff)

            Re: @Sarah Bee

            They don't pay me enough for me to do anything so strenuous as shilling.

    8. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      The author - or the product?

      AC wrote: "the writer here is a very, very negative individual! i have never ready such a 'half empty' report - u must have a very sad, unfortunate, boring and highly uninteresting life"

      Maybe the report simply echoes the reality of the product. All the reviews I've read about Windows Phone 7 seem to be struggling to find something interesting to say, and not many seem bothered about commenting either. Perhaps it's just Windows Phone 7 that is "very sad, unfortunate, boring and highly uninteresting"?

    9. Bilgepipe

      Also Boring

      At least the writer has a basic grasp of English...

  2. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Linked in with Windows Live? I hope that's nothing to do with the xbox live system. If it is, then I'm not touching it. Last thing I want is MS bricking the phone 'cause of a perceived illegal operation. Too much big broher goes on for my liking.

    1. Daniel 1

      maybe it gives you instant access to the Xbox live userbase?

      Log in, and you immediately get insulted by twenty random strangers, who are all working on finding ways to accuse each other of being homosexual, without having to use the word "gay"?

    2. Tzael

      Re: Live?

      Interesting speculation and something I hadn't previously considered. Appreciate you putting forward this possibility for contemplation.

      I guess you've also ruled out Apple iPhone and RiM Blackberry devices for similar reasons? There's always Android phones, a friend took me through the process of 'rooting' Android handsets and showed me some of the frustrations of regularly having to hard-reset the device due to software updates for the OS.

      Basically Apple have managed to convince a lot of customers that letting the manufacturer retain complete control of the handset is in their customers' best interests. Now the road is clear for other manufacturers to do the same so it's only a matter of time before the notion of us controlling what our phones do is completely out of our own hands.

    3. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      The games side is integrated with Xbox Live - with the achievements, avatars, friends lists and everything else that entails.

      I'd imagine Windows Live is in there somewhere too (they mentioned sharing Office docs and such)

      Personally I'm only really interested in how the UI pans out - it seems like a good idea to go simple and "stylish"

    4. Plinkerton


      You might want to steer well away from Android then

  3. Mighty Gaz


    since when do verizone operate in the UK?

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    2nd report i have read

    that fails entirely to comment either way on whether this 'phone' can make telephone calls.

    Perhaps i am old school, but since the iBroke 4.0 antenna issue perhaps its worth asking that question?

    Also, rightly or wrongly windows is known for crashing (ref: the 'if MS made cars' joke).

    1. The BigYin


      The Windows phones I have had to endure needed hard boots at least once a day.


      MS is nowhere in the mobiles space (and never has been). One must wonder why they are now making this sudden play, is it just to collect patents and make money of the sweat of others?

      MS nearly lost the netbook market with their arrogance and only serious back-pedalling over XP (assisteed by the ineptitude/inexperience of the Linux distros) allowed them to regain their hold. The problem with the mobile market is that Linux et al are already entrenched, integrated and working very well; this is not how it was when netbooks started.

      I seriously hope the various Linux groups can use the mobile space as a chink in MS's armour and then spread to other areas such as the desktop (i.e a share in double or near-double digits). Only time will tell.

  5. Daniel 1

    I'll reserve judgement

    I hope there's some degree of customisation to how this thing lets you organise stuff. I'm not sure how "delightful and wonderfully mine" it would be, if what it says about me is that I need everything I do organising into one of six broad categories, that are then hidden under baby-blue and vomit-green squares.

    Otherwise, I can see all the parodies going up on-line ... John Hodgman, in that grey suit, holding up one of these things: "delightful... and wonderfully me..."

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Jobs Halo

    Only one handset? So unlike the iPhone

    The iPhone only ships with, er, one kind of handset. Can't recall the last time that was used to write a negative article about it by El Reg.

    Also... does that mean iOS 3 was unfinished since Apple let you upgrade to iOS4? I'm just glad we're getting C+P added without the hassle of a complete OS flash or a new handset...

    Full Disclosure: I'm an MS Employee

  7. Mike OReilly

    Is it just me

    or do all the WP7 articles here really have decidely negative tone to it? Feels as if Reg (and the usual MS hating commentators here) is bitter and annoyed that MS came up with what seems to be really good mobile OS. C'mon, if uber ifanboi John Gruber thinks it's awesome, it can't be as bad as people here think, right?

    1. The BigYin



      There's a couple of other articles on El Reg that are gushing about it.

  8. dubno

    nah - they'll never need that.....

    "Cut and paste is being added following feedback from the Windows Phone 7 beta program according to Belfiore who said it had been overlooked as Microsoft had focused instead on touch."

    If they've overlooked such basic functionality such as Copy & Paste, what else has been ignored? Has anyone checked if you can make calls with this thing? Just asking.

  9. Gord

    here in canada we call it telus

    telus means "we were here first" and "bad customer service" and "if we ignore the upstarts maybe they'll go away".

  10. Furbian

    Wot .. cut paste comming later...

    They needed feedback AFTER most of the development had been done to tell them that cut and paste will be something that people actually want?

    Did no one at M$ read any news about the iPhone when it was released without cut and paste? No one back then could work out why Apple thought that it was fine not to have such an essential feature, providing Nokia with one of the last laughs they had at Apple.

    Makes you wonder what else they don't know about and isn't included .....

    Or is M$ trying to prove that they are being 'different' and have not let there developers be 'corrupted' by having any knowledge of rival devices. A team of developers recruited from the remotest part of the world, from the suburbs of Ulan Bator to Urucurituba no doubt.

  11. Anonymous Coward

    should i buy iPhone 5 next year...

    or a Windoze Phone 7 - Version 1.... hmmm let me think...

    no, looks like i will buy something that works, rather than a M$ product which wont.

  12. Barry Rueger
    Thumb Down

    Cut and Paste

    How in God's name could any maker of tech gear "overlook" cut and paste? Has no-one in phone land ever had to copy over a phone number or name?

    1. pan2008

      C & P

      Cut and paste is coming after xmas.

  13. Giles Jones Gold badge

    Different for the sake of it?

    From what I've seen it has some good features, but also it seems to be different for the sake of standing out. But the UI looks like you'll spend half of your time scrolling around to find things that should just be there.

    Many of the user interfaces are only partially shown, so you have to scroll about using your phone like a magnifying glass to find things. You might think that's the same with all OSes, but the layout isn't very consistent.

    Have a look at three examples here:

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    So, UI aside, what's different?

    They make and take calls, they send and receive texts, they do web stuff and apps and capture images. Phones are commodity items these days, no more exciting than fridges.

  15. Anonymous Coward

    Test case

    You're out of range of a good signal for your own operator, but, in a crisis, need to make a emergency call via another operators mast...

    ...if this goes untested, then perhaps such a situation would give the blue screen of death?!

  16. Magius

    It's a growing OS

    Laughable, writer tried to stress the unfinished so much that it feels forced. It took Apple how many years to implement cut & paste? However most sites praised the phone anyway. The writer needs to find tangible proof if he wants readers to take him seriously.

    Michelle, sadly big brother is here anyway. Just be smart on how you share your information. XBox Live (or any Live services) should not be mandatory, I think. However, bricking your phone would be past anything big bro should be able to do. Given MS position in the market it is not in their best interest to piss off anyone.

    That being said, I am still on the sidelines on the new OS. MS seems to want to control every aspect of the experience, which is both good and bad. Which side it leans on more will decide how well it does in the market. Keep an even presentation and it will be great. Try to tightly control everything users can do and imho it won't go smooth.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    In a hurry

    ok, this article and many like all over the web today really should be setting off mental alarms for consumers. MS admits that it is releasing a product that is unfinished and not ready for prime time my stating "an update will be available" before the product is even being sold?

    that makes me nervous, and shows how desperate MS is to get back into the phone pool with it's new OS. I'm not saying it's a bad thing, but....are they listening? consumers complained for a while about the expectations of the IPhone, and MS is making some of the same mistakes before it even ships the first phone. Even going a few of the same disappointing paths as Apple and others took.

    first impression is a lasting impression, and if they do not have anything to impress consumers with between now and Xmas, then I'm pretty sure an IPhone is going to be on everyone's list.

    A year from now, Apple and Android will still be fighting for the top spots while WinPhone7 won't even be considered as valid competition.

  18. JaitcH

    Here is your new condominum apartment delivered on time ...

    but you will get the doors and windows next spring.

    MS, you failed to deliver a complete product on time. Again.

  19. Wallyb132


    Cut and Paste overlooked? my ass! Microsoft intentionally left it out, initially MS had announced that it wouldn't be present, period, end of story, but they received such a huge backlash from the (dwindling) WinMo fan club that they promised to add it in later....

    This shit about an app store... if their app store is the only way software can be installed on these phones, it'll surely mean i'll never buy one... the only thing that makes my touch pro 2 compelling to me is that i can install what ever i want without any bullshit of an app store...

    1. Rebajas
      Paris Hilton


      How do you install stuff on your phone then? Do you connect to your computer, then sync?

  20. Sentient
    Thumb Up

    Well I wish them luck

    they're going to need it.

    And what's the big deal with Cut n Paste? Never used it on my phone, never missed it.

    If that's all that's lacking this OS will be the best ever, which I doubt it will be.

  21. Chad H.

    More to the announcement between the lines?

    Outside the US, phones will ship from Tellus in Canada, America Movil in Mexico, O2 and Verizon in the UK


    Is this confirmation of Verizon launching a network in the UK?

  22. brale
    Thumb Down

    Stay away from Windows Phone 7!

    Unfinished phone, what for the third revision before considering to buy this thing!

  23. Michael C

    More unfinished than discussed

    Major missing features:

    - cut/paste (and its complete BS that this was "overlooked" after all the noise made over Apple's lack of it initially).

    - Tiles not customizable by devs

    - Video output

    - Mac Support

    - no side loading apps

    - no file system

    - no browser silver light support (only in apps)

    - no cross-app data sharing

    - no streaming (from PCs in the home)

    - no SD cards

    - can install other browsers (eventually) but default MUST be IE (can not be changed, wow, the EU is going to CRUCIFY them over that one....)

    - no iTunes support (some may call that a plus, but millions of people use it. And YES, there ARE phones that support iTunes other than Apple, they just don;t "integrate" with iTunes, and rely on APIs to access the XML database and file system directly, which IS allowed by Apple, f*ck you Palm!).

    Its far from finished.

  24. someone up north

    massive run out of ideas event to me !

    "Everything Everywhere" ?

    it is all sound more like Nothing Every time

  25. Graham Lockley


    "Last thing I want is MS bricking the phone 'cause of a perceived illegal operation. "

    So stay well away from iPhone and (to a lesser extent) Android as well.

  26. Wibble


    That was August? They've missed that - or has this article taken 4 months to be published?

    The next time people buy things in force is Christmas - or around Guy Fawkes night when the Americans make Bernard Matthews very happy.

  27. J. Cook Silver badge

    Well, that excludes me...

    ... from using this phone- I can't stand Face(palm)book, and I don't have an Xbox live account to link it to. The music features sound interesting, but I've already a device for that with works a treat. GPS navigation and internet? Again, depends on how well they work, which this article glossed over pretty lightly. (Not sure if I want to use IE on a mobile device, though- too many bugs and holes with the desktop version already.)

    I do wonder if it will let me establish a real-time voice conversation with people? That would be a very useful feature to have, especially if the quality of the voice conversation is good.

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re "boring... #"

    dude this is the reg - the self proclaimed "vulture central" - expect all reports to be sarcastic and derisive ina funny way - if you want "straight" tech reporting head to cnet!

  29. Yet Another Anonymous coward Silver badge

    finally some competition

    Because what MSFT has always been about is being the liberating voice of freedom of choice rather than just automatically going with the the industry standard out of fear.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Gates Horns

      Re: finally some competition

      Great sarcasm, there! Well, I hope it was sarcasm.

  30. Henry Wertz 1 Gold badge


    @AC "Boring...."..... *shrug*, I'm with the article writer though. All the info on Windows Phone 7 has made it look lackluster. And based on articles I've read (not just this one) it seems like Ballmer's presentation was a bit lackluster too. It's hard to fake excitement about an unexciting product.

    I'm surprised they didn't think cut and paste was important. I mean really? When IPhone shipped without it, even the biggest raging fanbois couldn't come up with an excuse, they were like "Huh.. well it should be added soon". It seems like a pretty silly mistake to duplicate.

  31. Shannon Jacobs
    Thumb Down

    Well yes, worse is different?

    Or maybe it's just the mediocre writing, but it sure sounds like all of the apparent differences are for the worse. However, I'm already using as little Microsoft as possible, so I guess it's no more skin off my nose.


    I miss my Palm OS.

  32. Ku...

    Windows "crashing"

    Are people still making that jibe? c'mon, get with the 21st century, Windows since 2000 has been relatively stable, each sucessive release being generally better than the last. I manage a large WinTel estate and we don't have Windows "crashing". I guess its the "give a dog a bad name" thing. I suspect that will haunt Windows phone efforts as some previous efforts have been a bit horrible. Not so much that they were bad attempts for their era, but that MS has been lacking development in this area and what it has been offering has been sorely out of date. Like walking into a Ford dealer and finding they are sill selling the Escort... Not great when new but not actually bad. But compared with a modern design, sub-par! I'm prepared to give MS a shot with this, I'm even prepared to wait until Phone 7 v1.1 but Ballmer beware I am rapidly becoming an Android Fanboi as are just about everyone I know who doesn't Fangrl thier iPhone...

  33. Asher Pat

    Clearly, the journo is an Apple worshipper...

    ...trying to rubbish any competition to his Apple church. Exactly why isnt WP7 "unfinished"?

    Aahah, precisely 2 (!) points cited by our journo - no cut and paste! no apps!

    I wonder if he called iPhone "unfinished" when it was launched, without GPS, without stereo Bluetooth and yes, without cut/paste and...apps.

    "Think different" - buy Nopple!

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