NYT’s Pogue: Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7.5 is gorgeous, classy, satisfying, fast and coherent

“Microsoft is belatedly trying to take on the iPhone and Android phones with its own phone software,” David Pogue reports for The New York Times. “It’s available on several phones from Samsung and HTC, at prices from $50 to $200 with two-year contracts; each major American carrier offers at least one. (The Windows Phone 7.5 software, code-named Mango, is also available as a free upgrade for older Windows Phone 7 phones.)”

“Windows Phone 7.5 is gorgeous, classy, satisfying, fast and coherent. The design is intelligent, clean and uncluttered. Never in a million years would you guess that it came from the same company that cooked up the bloated spaghetti that is Windows and Office,” Pogue reports. “Most impressively, Windows Phone is not a feeble-minded copycat. Microsoft came up with completely fresh metaphors that generally steer clear of the iPhone…”

“Now, if this phone had arrived before the iPhone, people would have been sacrificing small animals to it. But Microsoft’s three-year lag behind its rivals is going to be very tough to overcome. Windows Phone is considered a weird outlier. Unlike with the iPhone, there’s no teeming universe of alarm clocks, chargers, accessories and cars that fit these phones,” Pogue reports. “Similarly, Windows Phone’s app store has 30,000 apps, which is an achievement — but Android offers 10 times as many, and the iPhone store has 16 times as many… In other words, Microsoft may face quite a Catch-22, no matter how superb its work: Windows Phone isn’t popular because it isn’t popular.”

Read more in the full article here.

MacDailyNews Take: Windows Phone will be popular. Over time, it’ll eat the lunch of the increasingly fragmented, increasingly insecure, and increasingly costly Android (losing patent infringement lawsuits and dropping features/paying royalties to multiple IP owners will do that to you).

The not-iPhone world will begin to dump Android and move to Microsoft’s mobile OS offering because it will eventually cost less, work better, and come with far fewer legal issues. In the iPhone wannabe market, it’s already happening (Nokia, for example). We expect the same to happen in the iPad wannabe market, too. Google and Microsoft will long battle each other for the non-Apple markets and that’s a much better scenario for everyone than having a single ripoff artist flood the market with fragmented, insecure, beta-esque, mediocre-at-best products. Google’s attempt to be the next Microsoft is doomed.

This, of course, will also impact Google’s search business. Apple’s Siri will increasingly deliver info to users sans Google and Microsoft will, naturally, use Bing for their search. As we’ve said many times in the past: Google will rue the day they got greedy by deciding to try to work against Apple instead of with them.

The bottom line: We’d rather see a company trying unique ideas, even if – shockingly – it’s Microsoft, than the wholesale theft of Apple innovations that we’ve been seeing for over four years now. Don’t steal IP. Even worse, don’t steal IP and “claim to be innovators.” We have no problem with any companies that attempt to compete with Apple using their own unique ideas and strategies.

[Thanks to MacDailyNews Reader “Edward Weber” for the heads up.]

58 Comments

        1. http://www.engadget.com/photos/windows-phone-mango-social-and-email/#4254338

          I am really shocked at anyone thinking this is
          good INTERFACE DESIGN.

          TILES (blocks with text) and a
          SINGLE sans serif font (with indentations)

          as clean as it appears – it tires the eye – will not be useful to all people (children/challenged people/business people)

          It looks got a cosmetic styling, it clinical and boring.

          The main feat Microsloth might have achieved is desktop apes running on a mobile device – yet I don’t think this will be so true.

        2. wow more vaporware from Microsoft… they sure did abandon the courier project. The surface idea is worthless for mass adoption.

          And now M$’s future version of augmented reality and Siri connectivity without voice. IF this is the future, they are already behind with an idea they in no way could implement as Microsoft.

      1. A mess? Are you hoping that people won’t actually *read* what you link to?
        FYI, here’s Engadget’s summary of their review:
        “While Windows Phone still needs a glass of water to get rid of a few hiccups — and let’s face it, every mobile OS has plenty of their own — it ironed out a lot of the wrinkles from earlier versions and made it a much more feature-laden, user-friendly experience. With Mango, WP7 has caught up with Android and iOS in nearly every way, and in some areas it’s even surpassed the other two in functionality.”

    1. LAME – Microsloth has down nothing…
      form and function is in the footsteps of APPLE.
      WHy after all these years has Microsloth not gotten a jump on voice. Because they like all the others can not predict where the puck will go. Hence their are coping as does Android.

  1. Just think: Even with no real competition, Apple has given us the best computer operating system, the best computer hardware, the best smart phone, the best tablet and the best smart phone/tablet OS. Imagine what great things lie ahead when Apple, finally, might actually have a worthy competitor.

    1. Nothing is changing. Microsoft has always known how to make a major product of theirs receive glowing reviews.

      e.g., the original reviews of Vista were adoring.

      WinPho 7 was an indescribable failure. It’ll take a whole lot more than tweaking it a little, bumping the version number up to 7.5, and buying some praise to hoist Mango out of the crater.

      Remember the Zune HD and how how it was pretty much universally acknowledge as a significant improvement over the original Zune? Yeah.

  2. I’ve never doubted that Microsoft had talented people working for them, it was upper management that kept getting in their way.
    Now that Windows Phone 7.5 people came out with a good product, how long will it take for Microsoft management to take notice and start monkeying around with it?
    “If we change this and add that, it would increase profit in my department by 15%”

  3. Gorgeous? How much uglier can a phone without buttons be? Those iPod colors: horrible. A baby blue Fiat 500 is cool, a BMW 7-series in the same color is a disaster. So is this phone.

  4. The new Nokia with Mango (the more expensive version) is a very nice looking phone, but won’t be out until next year. Have not experienced Mango, but I agree with MDN, it’s hard to fault even MS when they’ve developed their own home brew OS and not simple ripped off iOS. Where and how it may be better remains to be seen.

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