Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Windows Phone 7: A mobile OS for Facebook addicts?

Posted by vonne at 9:33 PM
Microsoft's Windows Phone 7 (WP7) promises to provide an enhanced social media experience to those who can't get enough of Facebook.
Launched in the Philippines last week, the company's newest mobile operating system boasts of a People Hub that allows users to combine mobile contacts and Facebook friends, making it a "phonebook on steroids."
With the Facebook and Windows Live integration, users can post status updates, comments and photos on the social network, and see "live" updates from friends.
"Windows Phone 7 was designed to provide users with a holistic approach to make socializing more fun, interactive and simple," said Mae Moreno, Windows client product manager.
WP7 has also combined all photos -- from camera shots to those uploaded by users and their friends on Facebook -- in a Picture Hub, allowing users to share pictures and add comments faster and more easily.
Aside from the People and Picture Hubs, WP7 also has a Music + Video Hub, a Games Hub and an Office Hub, where users can view and edit Microsoft Office documents from their phones and sync them with the SkyDrive file hosting service.
All these can be "pinned" in a customizable Start screen as Live Tiles, which show real-time updates.
For instance, a thumbnail of a Facebook friend's photo will show up on the People Hub the moment she changes her profile picture.
"Users are looking for an integrated experience on the mobile phone that is quick and easy to navigate, and Windows Phone 7 gives them exactly that," Moreno said.
The first WP7-powered handset in the Philippines is the HTC Mozart which sells for around P27,000. Other mobile operators may start offering devices running on the said OS in the coming months.
The Windows Phone Marketplace (similar to Apple's App Store and Google's Android Market), however, has yet to be made available in the country, which means that users here have to wait before they can download Windows applications on their WP7 handsets.
Officials from Microsoft are hoping that the new OS would do well in the Philippines, a country known to have heavy Facebook users.
About 93% of Filipinos regularly visited the social networking site in May 2010, the highest penetration of any global market for Facebook, according to digital world watchdog comScore.



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