back to article Things Microsoft will be glad to never see again: Windows 10 1809 and Windows Phone Office

New builds, a prolonged farewell to old friends and a new toy (for the boss, at least). That's right, it's the past week at Microsoft brought to you in bite-sized chunks by El Reg. The October 2018 Update nightmare is coming to an end There was an audible sigh of relief from within the bowels of Redmond last week as, according …

  1. aje21

    While they continue to work...

    I will continue to use my two Windows phones (Lumia 1020 and Lumia 635) - so there.

    1. KittenHuffer Silver badge

      Re: While they continue to work...

      The chances are that they will 'effectively' become more secure as time goes on, due to the fact that hackers are not gonna be that interested in hacking the 7 people who are still using Windohs phones!

      1. Persona Silver badge

        Re: While they continue to work...

        There has long been an element of truth in that. Also the last Microsoft phones came out over 4 years and are still getting monthly updates pushed to them. There aren't too many Android phones that can make that claim.

      2. Roland6 Silver badge

        Re: While they continue to work...

        >The chances are that they will 'effectively' ...

        Not suffer performance degradation due to performance 'enhancements' like iOS devices.

        Not suffer reliability issues due to new updates intended to be used with more recent OS versions and so not properly tested with your OS version (Android)...

        The only question will be when will it become impossible to obtain replacement batteries.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: While they continue to work...

      Sigh. The 635 is a real workhorse of a phone - still going strong on the original battery for me. (e.g. 10 days of standby on a single charge).

      The whole MS phone debacle is a real case of if...only. If only they'd stuck to making a business phone; ignored the games market; and (mostly) hadn't tried to put the phone interface onto the Windows desktop.

      I don't use Office on it but OneNote works a treat - great for noting thoughts on the train etc and then having them in the desktop version automatically.

      1. AndyMulhearn

        Re: While they continue to work...

        The whole MS phone debacle is a real case of if...only. If only they'd stuck to making a business phone; ignored the games market; and (mostly) hadn't tried to put the phone interface onto the Windows desktop.

        Although I can understand the reasons it died on it's arse - my view is developers getting fed up about the continual API changes and rewrites so that the move from 8 to 10 was one step too far for most and with no Apps. market shared tanked - I quite liked Windows Phone. And I speak as someone who is now invested totally in the Apple Ecosystem.

        Even relatively cheap phones performed well, battery life was good, Phone 8 was nicely usable and some of the apps that were available worked way better, IMHO, than the equivalent Android and iOS versions of the time. I have no idea what MS thought they were doing, though I suspect Apple faked them out with stories of converging iOS and MacOS so that MS thought they had to get there first with the resulting disaster that was Windows Phone 10.

        And, as they say, the rest is history.

      2. AMBxx Silver badge

        Re: While they continue to work...

        Sadly my 950XL and 1020 died. Still have a 520 in the cupboard - so quick for such a cheap phone. Android just doesn't cut it.

      3. LeahroyNake

        Re: While they continue to work...

        'If only they'd stuck to making a business phone;'

        I have only had to support one windows phone. The boss got for some random reason while the rest of us were on android Galaxy s6's. Tbh it was quite nice once you figured out the UI.

        He replaced it 3 months after getting it as it would refuse to sync with Exchange at least twice a week while all the Samsung phones were fine. Turned out to be certain emails in the inbox screwed up the phone, once they were deleted and the account removed and added again to the phone it would work fine.. For a bit.

        I would have thought that email sync was the one thing they could perfect, obviously not in my case.

  2. sbt

    "... spew out ... like a candy-filled toddler on a waltzer"

    Simile of the week, and it's only Monday.

    I've always thought of the combination of fairground rides and fairground concessions as an opportunity to recycle sugar into geometry, such as arcs, epicycloids, trochoids, etc. Much like those bags of sand on pendulums.

  3. Spanners Silver badge


    I really hoped that Windoze for phones might actually last.

    As a confirmed "not Apple under any circumstances" user, I feel that there should be an alternative to Android. Maybe, Huawei will actually make something?

    1. KittenHuffer Silver badge

      Re: Sad

      [cough] Tizen! [cough]

      [cough] Sailfish! [cough]

      1. iron Silver badge

        Re: Sad

        The most recent phone running Tizen is the Samsung Z4 smartphone released in June 2017. I can't find any mention of it on the Samsung website so I'm going to go out on a limb and suggest it is no longer available.

        Tizen is not an Android alternative, apart from watches.

        1. KittenHuffer Silver badge

          Re: Sad

          Ok, you got me on that one. I looked at the Tizen a couple of years ago, and I was just recalling that.

          Sailfish is a different kettle of ...... er, fish! They seem to have recently added the Xperia 10 to the list of supported devices.

          I have been looking at picking up an second-hand XA2 for the fun of seeing how good it is as an OS. If you're thinking of the same make sure that the XA2 you're picking up can be unlocked and rooted. I believe that if it was originally sold sim-free then it can be unlocked, but if it was sold via a service provider then even if it's been sim-unlocked it will be bootloader/root locked.

  4. 0laf

    I was a happy Nokie 920 user until MS abandoned the platform.

    I hope the eco warriors come to get them since my Nokia was fit only for the 'small electrical' recycling skip.

    Having been through Apple and Android since then I still think the WinPho UI was was best.

  5. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I'd rather trade Windows 10 for MacOS than my 950XL for an iPhone

    Windows Phone is simply a superior user experience.

    I'm still using my 950XL and my 1020 which is still the best camera on a phone (or is that the best phone on a camera). And I will until Outlook stops working.

    Oddly the Guardian app and Shazam both stopped working some time ago but earlier this year I had to get a replacement 950XL (surprisingly cheap for a new one) and they both installed and work fine. Instagram will let me create a new account and use it but it won't let me log into an existing account which I view as spite. Waze claims it can't find a network - wait! there are two to chose from! - and gives up. But, against all odds on many levels, the little app for Dropcam cameras that I bought years ago still works perfectly.

    After that, it's the lesser of two evils but I can't figure out which is which.

  6. Zippy´s Sausage Factory

    Despite never having used, or wanted, a Windows Phone (and definitely not wanting to give Microsoft any more power than they currently have), I'm sad to see the back of it. Basically because Google keep ploughing Android in the direction of wringing every cent from the advertising market that they possible can, while Apple sit there trying to be some kind of hipster "curated features" phone. It would be nice to have a major alternative that actually made some sense. Two - making it a four-way fight - would have been even better, but Blackberry messed up as well.

    Oh well, back to "what might have been" as we now have a two-horse race.

    1. jelabarre59

      Oh well, back to "what might have been" as we now have a two-horse race.

      More like a two-hores's-ass race.

  7. JDX Gold badge

    Question: is there a new version of Windows in development?

    MS typically has its new generation of Windows in progress for years but I was just thinking I haven't heard anything about silly OS code-names for ages.

    Since W10 effectively gives you major OS updates periodically, does this mean W10 just IS Windows for the foreseeable future... or is W11 being worked on in secret?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      @JDX - Re: Question: is there a new version of Windows in development?

      Why do you ask, are you fed-up with the current Windows version ? Just asking.

      1. JDX Gold badge

        Re: @JDX - Question: is there a new version of Windows in development?

        I'm just interested.

  8. karlkarl Silver badge

    I believe it is as simple as...

    if Microsoft removed the requirement of a developer (DRM) license... It would have dominated.

    As weird as this sounds, Microsoft does best as an open platform. This is why developers, business and games has traditionally gravitated towards it.

  9. Ozan

    Project SCarlet

    It's meanless if they never got good games on it. PS4 kicked xbox for taht reason. Hell, Nintendo Switch has better game support than xbox now.

  10. cambsukguy

    At least the office stuff will be supported for quite a long time yet - and will still operate after that.

    Since my phone design is now 4 years old (950), I guess that is long enough.

    But, the problem is this: How do I find a) Hardware that is as good without paying what amounts to a grand and b) Android has loads and loads of 'extra' little features but doesn't have the elegance and usability of WP, even now (using Android Pie that is).

    For a) I investigated a replacement phone "for a friend" wanting to meet at least most of the spec that the old Lumia 950 has... Hi-res AMOLED display (550 ppi), not stupidly large (under 6 inch for sure), biometric device (950 has an iris scanner - very secure), replaceable battery (impossible these days I think). SD card expansion, High dynamic range microphones (950 has 4, for recording and noise cancellation), Optical Image stabiliser, 20MP or similar camera (HDR, RAW etc.).

    The 950 was under £500 when new (I paid 320 a short time later and 70 for one recently )but, it seems like £500 doesn't get anything like that any more.

    We plumped for a Nokia 9 Pureview mainly because a) The pictures are pretty good despite the reviews, some look sharper than the 950's exquisite pictures despite the lower pixel count (which can be seen when zooming in). The colours seem less true but there is powerful editing and insane depth recording.

    The Nokia also has High Dynamic range mics (3, enough I suppose). It doesn't have OIS but, apparently, can perform similar magic for video and the Photos gets HDR and stabilisation inherently (because it has 5 cameras and post-processes the images I presume).

    The fingerprint sensor (it has face login too but we haven't tested it) is poor but is 'fixed' in dry-finger conditions but the clever use of touching a finger to the forehead and oiling it up, works every time!

    No removeable battery, not really wanted by that user (just me), but 128GB of (faster) storage makes no SD expansion much, much less of an issue.

    The price of £350 makes it a third of the price of a flagship - which makes all the reviews comparing the pictures to an iPhone XS or Pixel 4 etc. really stupid price-wise.

    What iPhone costs £350 even second-hand - nothing remotely comparable camera-wise, storage-wise or even speed-wise I suspect. Certainly, it won't come with a warranty for two years.

    Given that Nokia guarantee two version updates (android 10 is imminent as the first I guess) and is AndroidOne and very clean with zero bloatware, it was an easier choice.

    Added to that, the good news that the camera is getting a specific update which, I hope, will bring the camera closer to its initial promise, it is a good choice really.

    It is a nice looking phone and is waterproof, in both cases superior to the 950, although the 950 is nice looking enough.

    So, Android. Launcher 10 is laughable so given up on immediately, no updating tiles (what's the point then?).

    Android doesn't allow Pin-to-start for things like settings, which I have several of, one for quickly accessing the screen-lock system for instance, less needed if your phone truly unlocks instantly every time, without fail and without having to pick up the phone say. This is why I operate unlocked most of the time, it is simply aster - important shit like Lastpass and banking access have extra protection anyway.

    The scrolling start screen is just so much easier than side to side scrolling of multiple pages with stupid little Windows 3. icons in them.

    BBC news widget is hopeless, you have to manually scroll the damn items when all she wanted was them to appear as she simply looked at the tile, like before.

    And Dark Mode? Jeez, acing like it is a revelation, it doesn't theme across the system, is app-based, useless and annoying. Apparent Android 10 makes it system-wide properly (to help YOU save battery!), years and years later.

    And don't get me started on the fucking notifications, right there on the screen, in my face, for everything! including SW updates.

    I even get adverts as notification from fuckers like WIzzair - presumably you can disable the notifications but you might bloody well need them when you have a flight - what a useless system.

    So, I am sticking with my shit phone until Edge stops working with too many web pages to stand (basically when the BBC stop working). I can only assume the ones that have stopped are out of laziness or spite since they do nothing that Edge 16 (17?) can't do anyway.

    Been wanting to get that off my chest for a while now.

    1. Bruce Ordway

      Option A for me

      >> a) Hardware that is as good (enough) without paying what amounts to a grand

      In my case, this is just a plain old flip phone.

      I am still dumbfounded by the massive popularity of smartphones.

      When I'm away from my desk, I actually enjoy NOT being connected/available.

      1. Kristian Walsh

        Re: Option A for me

        Unfortunately, I have a lot of friends who only read their WhatsApp/FBMessenger/Viber messages, and these services are going to stop supporting WinPhone at the end of the year.

        If it weren't for that, and the now-knackered battery, my five-year-old Lumia 950 would do me for another few years.

        1. Anonymous Coward
          Anonymous Coward

          Re: Option A for me

          Unfortunately, I have a lot of friends who only read their WhatsApp/FBMessenger/Viber messages...

          Must be time for new friends then...

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