Windows 8 is out in the wild and has already quite a large army of tablets/hybrids. It will be really interesting to see if Windows Phone 8 too manages to scare the competition. On the mobile field, Microsoft didn’t have too much luck. But this time, things might change for the Redmond team.
Microsoft has put a lot of planning in Windows Phone 8 and for the first time, Microsoft can become a serious competitor in the mobile field, but the success of WP8 is tightly linked with the one of Windows 8. With only 5% of the smartphone market, Microsoft has some catching up to do. We’re going to put together some of the most interesting Windows Phone 8 reviews, to see what do journalists and technology experts think about it.
Windows Phone 8 Reviews
BRAD MOLEN, ENGADGET
- WP8 can support anywhere from two cores to 64. Devices running the OS will start out with dual-core Snapdragon S4 processors, but we doubt it will be long before Microsoft gives the green light to quad-core chipsets.
- Windows Phone 8 devices can now support one of three options: WXGA (1,280 x 768), 720p (1,280 x 720) and the old-fashioned WVGA standard (ideal for entry-level smartphones). This brings WP8’s screens back into the modern age for now.
- Windows Phone 8 fully supports external storage up to SDXC, allowing you to add as much as 64GB in additional memory.
- Windows Phone 8 finally brings native support for Near-Field Communications.
- If you’ve used a Windows Phone before, you’ll instantly notice that something is different — very different.
- Windows Phone 8 offers several ways to sync your phone and PC, so that you don’t have to go through Zune to get access to your music, videos and photos anymore.
- You’ll also be able to enjoy OTA upgrades, a feature that’s been offered on Android and iOS devices for a long time now. You can be notified when the next update is available, download the updates automatically or manually check for a new software version.
- WP8 adds the ability to back up your text messages, app list, IE10 bookmarks, device settings and photos/videos to the cloud.
- If you’ve taken even a single look at Windows 8, it’s pretty clear that Windows Phone 8 has a much greater kinship to its desktop counterpart than its previous iteration did.
- All of our legacy WP 7, 7.5 apps have chugged along without any struggles.
- Kid’s corner feature enables a “guest user” mode that prevents the kiddies from deleting all of last week’s email, calling up random people you don’t want to talk to and wreaking complete havoc.
- Microsoft has responded to Google Wallet and Apple’s Passbook by introducing its own Wallet app, which is in many respects a combination of its two main competitors.
- WP8’s NFC support is useful for mobile payments, but it doesn’t stop there. The platform also allows you to use this technology to share videos, music, contact information and IE10 links between phones and other devices
- Expecting big changes in how WP8 handles its email experience? Don’t, unless you’ve been yearning for an inbox with a dark background.
- As the email experience hasn’t made any significant leaps, our opinion of it hasn’t changed much, either.
- Microsoft is also introducing its own data-usage tracker similar to what Google’s thrown into Android 4.0 and above, but there are a few design considerations that keep this from being just a carbon copy.
- As many of our avid readers know, we’re quite impressed with Nokia’s mapping prowess, so we were pleased to see that Windows Phone 8’s maps have been blessed with the Finnish company’s technology.
- Perhaps the best new feature is the phone’s deep integration with the cloud. Purchases you make within the Music Store will automatically be stored there so that you can listen to these songs on all of your Microsoft-branded devices.
- The gaming experience was lacking on Windows Phone 7, despite the company’s efforts to market its Games Hub in connection with Xbox Live. Fortunately, the folks in Redmond seem to have realized that this needed to change in order for WP8 to gain more momentum.
- Our Windows Phone 8X cruised through SunSpider in 904ms. That’s the fastest time we’ve recorded on a mobile device.
- You don’t have any native apps for Gmail, Reader, Voice, Talk or the vast multitude of other services.
- Developers can now have their apps communicate with other third-party apps.
Windows Phone 8 is a definite improvement over its predecessor, and it’s long overdue
CORY GUNTHER, SLASHGEAR
- The Start Screen is the biggest change at first glance. We still have the Metro-style live tiles we’ve come to love, but now there’s support for 3 sizes. This truly allows for customization on a level not available before.
- Windows Phone 8 offers full support for additional screen resolutions. Now we can enjoy large, bright, vivid, and crisp full 1280 x 720p HD displays and beyond.
- Users can now continue to make their device completely personal by changing the lockscreen background.
- You can see status updates before you unlock your phone, photos from your Facebook feed, Groupon deals of the day (based on location if you choose) and more all with ease. Anything from Facebook, Weather, News, Calendar, Music and more can all be shown on the lock screen.
- One of the very popular features of Windows Phone was the What’s New option in the People app and contacts list. With What’s New users can sync to Facebook and get a stream of status updates, alerts, and more all right inside the People app.
- An awesome new feature, while not huge, was severely needed and that is screenshots. Users can now quickly and easily capture anything on their Windows Phone 8 screen.
- As you saw in our video above, performance is just stunning here with the new and improved Windows Phone 8. Thanks to being more efficient, improved in all areas, built on the Windows 8 kernel, and now offering dual-core processor support this is absolutely the fastest and smoothest Windows Phone experience we’ve ever enjoyed.
WP8 can attract customers based on the personal and social experience, not to mention Kid’s Corner, but we still need developers to truly make Windows Phone 8 shine.
DANIEL RUBINO, WPCENTRAL
- The odd thing about Windows Phone 8 is there is no single killer feature. So when people ask “Why do I need Windows Phone over Android or iOS?” it’s hard to give a distinct, concise answer. That’s not a knock on the OS or Microsoft; in fact it’s a compliment.
- Windows Phone 8 is the whole package. It’s a fast stable OS that is as beautiful as it is functional.
- Another simple but useful addition is the ability to share apps right from the App list. By simply pressing and holding on the app, not only do you get the usual options to review, uninstall or pin to the Start screen, but you can now directly share it via email, SMS or tap to share.
- You can now save and share images from Bing image search.
- One of the crowing features of Windows Phone is the quick ability to take photos, including waking the phone and going right to the camera function just by holding the hardware shutter button.
- The new functions or changes to the camera module are the following: pinch to zoom, unified settings, on-screen Flash control, photo review, lenses.
- The concept of Rooms is fairly simple: create a space for people to discuss and share things online. By swiping over to the Together section under the People Hub, users can create a Room, invite their friends or family and begin interacting.
- Users can now have up to five notification icons on their Lock screens to show missed events.
- Xbox Music, which takes the reigns from Zune, brings many new features like Xbox Music Cloud sync. It works by having Xbox maintain your collection of purchased songs “in the cloud” and instantly syncing to your device.
Windows Phone 8 is a major step forward but it’s not the end of Microsoft’s tale, it’s merely a re-beginning