Rating: Kid’s Corner could be the dark horse here
Microsoft finally introduced the much-heralded Windows Phone 8 (WP8) yesterday [October 29th 2012] – waiting three days after the official launch of Windows 8 itself. We’re not quite sure why. After all, the new versions of Windows all boast a similar look and feel, the same technology core, plus the same built-in SkyDrive cloud service. Microsoft says Windows Phone 8 is built to work seamlessly with Windows 8 PCs, Microsoft Surface devices and the Xbox 360 console. It didn’t say which version of the Surface, though. At the Press conference in San Francisco (a place usually more associated with Apple), Microsoft showcased WP8 handsets from Nokia, Samsung and HTC. In terms of what WP8 offers, we’d say the latest version of this mobile OS seems to have three main new features: – Live Apps; Rooms; and Kid’s Corner. It also pumped up the Windows Phone Store.One of the most frequently cited weakness for Windows Phone was its lack of applications. (Lack of apps has certainly killed HP’s webOS.)
So Nokia/Microsoft fans will be heartened to discover that he Windows Phone Store has 120,000 apps to choose from – with hundreds being added every day.
Perhaps more significantly, Microsoft claims that all told, it would have 46 of the top 50 most popular heavily-used apps in its store.
Of course, Google and Apple both have around 700,000 apps to offer their respective customers.
Microsoft claims that it now has the only mobile OS which can display ‘Live Apps’ right on the Start (Home) screen.
GoMobile News is wary of such a claim given that widgets can be live on your Android Home screen.
Anyway, Microsoft suggests that such apps will include the Groupon deal of the day; flight information; and news headlines.
There’s also a suggestion that Facebook can post live photos on the Start screen, too.
Now Rooms appears to Microsoft’s attempt to steal back some of the eyeballs from the social media giants.
Rooms apparently allow you to create private groups of people but they must have Windows Phone 8, too. Not a big group, then.
The dark horse as far as GoMobile News is concerned is Kid’s Corner which is “a worry-free way to share your phone with your kids.”
Parents won’t have to worry about children accidentally deleting photos; misdirected emails; making unapproved purchases or phone calls.
A simple setup facility allows users to access only the apps, games, music and videos picked by its owner.
This sounds to GoMobile News just like a built-in ‘love cheats charter’ . That is a mechanism to stop spouses prying on your personal business. See our previous story here.
Microsoft also emphases that Windows Phone 8 brings together the best of new wallet technologies, including payments via near-field communications (NFC)
For hardware fans, the ATIV Odyssey was announced by Microsoft as the latest Windows Phone from Samsung.
However, it merely said there were more details to come.