Windows Phone 7 Series Unleashed

The news that was expected to come from Microsoft is true. They have unveiled the Windows Phone 7 Series to the world. A few things that I would like to comment on. First, the lack of Flash. It seems like Apple and Microsoft are abandoning the Flash platform. With Adobe’s support for 64-bit Flash, and the problems with the standard 32-bit version, it almost seems like Adobe has abandoned it as well.

Second, it is almost a “Too little, too late” scenerio. I’ve always been a fan of Windows Mobile, but have just recently jumped ship to the Android platform. I still use my Dell Axim x50V with WM6.0 occasionally, but my MotoQ phone is just a bad phone. A lot of people have already switched to Android, iPhone or the business friendly Blackberry. I’m hoping that the Windows Phone 7 Series can bring back some respect for the Microsoft mobile platform, but judging from the screenshots, it just doesn’t look like it will bring a whole lot of innovation to the table. Maybe I’m wrong, but only time will tell.

I do think that the addition of the Zune features and XBox Live functionality is great, and will help bring in some sales, but it just isn’t a major reason to switch to a new phone. Now that I’m on a contract with my new Android phone, I’ll have to wait for the new Microsoft phone, unless they offer some great incentives or deals to make me switch.

Engadget has some good coverage and screenshots on their page. It looks nice, sure, but I just don’t see what would make me switch this late in the game. I’m going to wait until the next revision of hardware and software before I make the switch. Unless they have a new “killer application” that I can’t live without.

Besides just flipping the script on the brand, the company seems to be taking a much more vertical approach with hardware and user experience, dictating rigid specs for 7 Series devices (a specific CPU and speed, screen aspect ratio and resolution, memory, and even button configuration), and doing away with carrier or partner UI customizations such as Sense or TouchWiz. That’s right — there will be a single Windows Phone identity regardless of carrier or device brand. Those new phones will likely look similar at first, featuring a high res touchscreen, three front-facing buttons (back, start, and perhaps not shockingly, a Bing key), and little else.