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  1.    #1  
    So David Pogue put up a review of the T-Mobile Shadow (Video First Look of the Shadow here) - I'm jealous because the Shadow is the device I'm itching to try out for real once the Smartphone Round Robin is over. He gives the hardware and the specs very high praise, but spends the bulk of his review railing against Windows Mobile.

    Frankly, Windows Mobile 6 is a mess. Common features require an infinitude of taps and clicks, and the ones you need most are buried in menus. Apparently the Windows Mobile 6 team learned absolutely nothing from Windows Mobile 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.
    Read: Looks Good, Feels Good, but Wait... - New York Times

    I have a few thoughts on this (including a Zuney **zany** idea!)- read on after the break.

    Read more at http://www.wmexperts.com/articles/ed...obile_doe.html
  2. #2  
    Pogue is simply an *****. When they mean simplify they mean less options. Options are good, stupid.

    Surur
  3. #3  
    No, it does not.

    "Frankly, Windows Mobile 6 is a mess. Common features require an infinitude of taps and clicks, and the ones you need most are buried in menus. Apparently the Windows Mobile 6 team learned absolutely nothing from Windows Mobile 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5."

    If you don't understand that it is time for MS to re-evaluate the way people interact with their data and phones devices, then I guess perhaps "you just don't get it.".
  4. #4  
    Of course it needs an overhaul. Not the OS, just the UI.

    It's so obvious even MS knows it, as I stated this morning here:

    Quote Originally Posted by Pattycerts View Post
    Hate to toot Apple's horn, but since the iPhone was announced then released it has become a mad dash to the UI finish line. This is a very big time in mobile land!

    HTC has released the touch, with its new touch interface. Now MS is rushing PHOTON to the table- so fast that it might keep the Windows Mobile 6 name. And check out the NEW devices coming out. Palm Treo 500v. It has another interface layer on top of wm to improve usability. The Sammy i780 has it too. Rumor is that it was a vodafone request, but I wouldn't be surprised if it was MS as well.

    I really shouldn't give Apple too much credit though. Everyone knew for a long time that WM was great, but very clunky to use. If it wasn't Palm OS would have died a long time ago. Microsoft was already working on this, I guess Apple just made them speed it up a little.
  5. #5  
    Gold, I know you are Windows Mobile fatigued after "7 years". Why don't you just take your iPhone and wait for Father Jobs to give you cut and paste.

    Surur
  6. #6  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    Pogue is simply an *****. When they mean simplify they mean less options. Options are good, stupid.

    Surur
    That's pretty harsh.....I wouldn't say that. Actually....I like Pogue's reviews despite the zani-ness or cheesy-ness. His ideas on products tend to be in line with my own. The fact is that I think you're looking through Windows Mobile through expert eyes. If you were anyone else looking for a platform, you might realize that the one real part of windows mobile that utterly sucks (compared to everything else out there) is the UI. It's saving grace is the functionality it can bring to a device.

    David Pogue seems to know this as he tries to look at a device through "generic consumer" eyes. He's not aiming for you or me, but rather the people who are not WM experts, or pros, and would be utterly confused at how to operate a WM6 phone out of the box. Why do you think PalmOS, despite its age and limitations, is still a somewhat viable platform for devices today?

    Now someone like you or me might be used to it. It's easy to hit start, then a letter for an app in that menu, or know that you have to go into settings then memory to kill an app. None of that negates the fact that the UI on windows mobile seems to be an evolution over years of one original terrible UI. Why do you think something like Spb's Mobile Shell can actually sell?

    And yes, options are good...but you can get similar configurability and options on a PalmOS device with a fundamentally better UI. That means that it's definitely possible, but MS has never been great at UI's. Plus, regular users aren't as concerned with options, they just want to know that they can learn to use the phone.

    Anyway, my point is that Pogue can sometimes get things wrong, but I haven't seen that happen often. In this regard, though, he's right, and I wouldn't recommend WM devices to those who I didn't think could handle maneuvering around the UI. I would typically recommend them to a Palm device, or now the iPhone.
  7. #7  
    More options are good? Sounds like you've been tweaking your registry a bit too much...
  8. nerdstrap's Avatar
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    #8  
    Using the iPhone isn't really simple. Yes, you can use an activated phone to do some quick web lookups pretty easily. Activating it though? Making calls and sending texts still require quite a few clicks. Finding a contact to send an email or text to is ridiculous! There was a great comparison of clicks needed to do common tasks recently...
  9. #9  
    The phone different editor said this well.

    It makes me sad, but copying feature phone UIs might actually be a smart move for now. Feature phone UIs, though tortured, are what 90% of North American mobile phone users are familiar with (insert your own obligatory 90% Windows users joke here). Everyone is familiar with feature phone user interfaces. There are bunches of indistinguishable icons, plenty of carrier-branded apps that interfere visually with platform apps, buried settings, and plenty of themes to choose from.
    WM Standard is very similar to my daughter's Razr. Guess what - the Razr has a spinning hour glass, and delete is also not the first option when you receive a text message, and unlike WM Standard you cant open an app in the app list by pressing the corresponding number key on the key pad.

    In fact its very similar to most phones. These complaints are getting tiring, and just seems to be complaining for the sake of complaining. He did not even say a single bit about the Neo interface.

    Surur
    Last edited by surur; 11/08/2007 at 01:49 PM.
  10. #10  
    I agree with Pogue on almost all points. I had the same exact thought about MS learning from the mistakes of prior releases.

    I was so excited when I first got to play with WM6, then I used it and walked away weeping.
  11. #11  
    At the risk of enduring Surur's wrath ;-) I have to also side a bit here with Pogue. The funny thing about Pogue's comments is how consistent they are with all new comers to WM, especially from Palm OS.

    I'm fine with WM and the screens and even the wait cursor are all things you adjust to after a week or two, it's not a huge deal--until you use something different or better.

    But the UI is clunky. The Standard edition "Start menu" is absolutely horrible, which is why I think the MS/Voda menu system looks real nice. But there are too many clicks to do some simple tasks. What I think Surur means though is that there are also 9000 + 1 ways to change that and make it much easier. You can customize to high heaven. OTOH, not everyone wants to do that. A friend who is in IT just picked up the Mogul on my recommendation (why would someone in IT not want such a device?). But as he mentions, he's spending a lot more time playing with it, customizing it and tweaking it than he had planned (he's coming from a flip phone) and he's not sure if he's okay with that. I can't say I blame him. WM devices can be a hobby (hello ppcgeeks!) but not everyone wants that in a smartphone.

    Most average flip phone users that check out my WM Pro phones all feel they are too overwhelming (and these are people all under 28 + computer savvy). Of course the devices really aren't, but it's the look that throws people off.

    Designing a UI is certainly not easy and I agree that the iPhone method is not the way either (rows of icons). I hope MS does something nice with Photon, but I won't hold my breath, but at least the 3rd parties are making $$ off of these overlooked issues.

    Things like Neo and HTC's plugins are nice, but they are truly superficial--pretty wrapping over an clunky UI. It just kind of sucks to have to run another layer on top of the OS to make it more usable or consumer friendly. It's the same reason I generally hate skinning programs. It certainly helps though, but the real solution is to take those types of UIs and go further and deeper, overhauling the entire system.

    The trade off though is this: WM is still the most powerful mobile OS around and will be for awhile. If you actually need what it can do, then these issues are not that important. Analogous to how real computer nerds prefer command line over fluffy GUIs.
    Last edited by Malatesta; 11/08/2007 at 02:54 PM.

    WMExperts: News, Reviews & Podcasts + Twitter
  12. #12  
    Quote Originally Posted by benjaminhigginbotham View Post
    I agree with Pogue on almost all points. I had the same exact thought about MS learning from the mistakes of prior releases.

    I was so excited when I first got to play with WM6, then I used it and walked away weeping.
    Another iPhone owner....

    Surur
  13. #13  
    Quote Originally Posted by Malatesta View Post
    But most average flip phone users that check out my WM Pro phones all feel they are too overwhelming (and these are people all under 28). Of course the devices really aren't, but it's the look that throws people off.
    Except the Shadow is a WM Standard phone, and no more complex than a Razr.

    Here's he's nonsense about the UI. He does not mention the new interface ONCE. Its all a litany of nitpicking.

    But then you turn the thing on.

    Unfortunately, after they did such a great job designing the hardware, T-Mobile’s chief executive and his ex-Apple designer punted on the software. They equipped this phone with Microsoft’s Windows Mobile 6. As it turns out, that decision is just as much an impediment to the Shadow’s greatness as AT&T exclusivity is to the iPhone.

    Frankly, Windows Mobile 6 is a mess. Common features require an infinitude of taps and clicks, and the ones you need most are buried in menus. Apparently the Windows Mobile 6 team learned absolutely nothing from Windows Mobile 1, 2, 3, 4 and 5.

    And lest you think I don’t have Microsoft’s best interests at heart, here’s a list of helpful suggestions. At no charge.

    First of all, a cellphone should not display a “wait” cursor. Ever. And definitely not almost every time you change screens, as on the Shadow.

    If your Web browser can’t play Flash videos, it should just say so. It should not say, “Make sure the path and file name are correct and that all the required libraries are available.” (Insert your own joke here about double-checking the local public library’s operating hours.)

    When you’re finished looking at a text message, you should not have to open a menu to find the Delete command. When you’re on a phone call, you should not have to open a menu to find the Speakerphone command. When you take a picture, you should not have to open a menu to find Send and Delete.

    A cellphone should not have a Task Manager. You should never have to worry about quitting programs because you’ve used up too much memory.

    A cellphone should auto-format phone numbers with parentheses and hyphens when you enter them in the address book. When the cursor is in a number box, like ZIP code, the keyboard should automatically start typing numbers. The owner should not have to press the alternate-symbols key.

    If the phone has a navigation wheel, the big, clickable center button should always mean “O.K.” Always. It should never do nothing, even when there’s an O.K. label over one of the tiny softkeys.

    When you’re assigning a contact to one of the five “My Faves” slots, a T-Mobile calling plan that gives you unlimited calls to your five favorite numbers, three confirmation screens is two too many.

    If it takes four presses on the More button just to see everything in the Start menu — and you provide no direct way to get to the first page from the last — you need to redesign.

    A locking feature, which prevents the buttons from being pushed accidentally in a purse or pocket, is nice. But it should be optional. And one button press should suffice to unlock it; two in sequence is just annoying.

    Now, there are certainly advantages to having Microsoft inside your phone. For example, this phone can open and edit (but not create) Microsoft Office documents. And it uses ActiveSync on a Windows PC, meaning that your phone is always up to date with your Outlook calendar and address book.

    But over all, it’s a shame that such bloated, baffling software runs a phone whose hardware is so close to perfect. (The only hardware disappointment is that scroll wheel, which is balky and slow to respond. T-Mobile agrees, and has a fix planned for the next batch.)

    So T-Mobile’s news release, it turns out, was half right. The Shadow does maintain “all the powerful calling, messaging and picture sharing capabilities people crave.” Unfortunately, it doesn’t “significantly reduce the complexity often associated with many feature-rich devices.”
  14. #14  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    Except the Shadow is a WM Standard phone, and no more complex than a Razr.

    Here's he's nonsense about the UI. He does not mention the new interface ONCE. Its all a litany of nitpicking.
    lol, he's really got you fired up, eh?

    True, the Moto Q was an easier sell to people as it's more "phone-ish" and I think Standard makes a good intro device. Just wish it were touchscreen to make it even easier.

    I don't know why he didn't mention Neo. Maybe he didn't care for it or he thought it was not enough. But some of his complaints, like the wait cursor, delete, filling in numbers, memory management, etc. won't be affected by discussing Neo.

    WMExperts: News, Reviews & Podcasts + Twitter
  15. #15  
    Quote Originally Posted by Malatesta View Post
    But some of his complaints, like the wait cursor, delete, filling in numbers, memory management, etc. won't be affected by discussing Neo.
    ... and those things are also the same as in a Razr. For the target market (Razr users) its not even worth discussing.

    Surur
  16. #16  
    Quote Originally Posted by surur View Post
    ... and those things are also the same as in a Razr. For the target market (Razr users) its not even worth discussing.

    Surur
    True.

    But I could also say that those are still bad or annoying. Just because the Razr does those things I'm not sure WM should too. I think they are legitimate complaints and things that a lot of WM uses would be happy to get ditch.

    If you asked people: would you like WM fast enough so that you don't see a wait cursor? I think most would say hell yeah. The problem today is to solve that problem it is usually done via hardware = faster CPU = less battery and that is not a fun trade off either. (then again, the Shadow is using a 201mhz processor--that is pretty slow).

    So just because other devices have poor UIs or clunky functionality does not really give WM a pass here.

    WMExperts: News, Reviews & Podcasts + Twitter
  17. #17  
    Quote Originally Posted by Malatesta View Post
    So just because other devices have poor UIs or clunky functionality does not really give WM a pass here.
    Except I still have to hear of Pogue's crusade against the Razr. Also, unless you get loads of text spam, using one of your precious softkeys for delete is just madness. When you are viewing a text in WM standard the default is Reply and Menu.On the Razr its also Reply, Menu and Back (WM Std has a fixed Back key). These seems pretty sensible defaults for both devices. In fact most people prefer to keep their text messages. Did Pogue even complain that in the iPhone you could not delete single text messages, but had to delete the whole conversation? Or that the SMS mailbox was very small? Yet he complains about this little nitpick?

    Formatting numbers with brackets? This is just a bizarre complaint. Who cares about brackets? I did not hear a groundswell of demand for this. Is this another piece of iPhone eye candy which is now suddenly essential for any phone that wants to be called a smartphone?

    He takes offense to the device even having a task manager. Thats just crazy. The phone has 128 MB RAM, its virtually guaranteed users will never run out of memory. Yet he rants about it.

    Pogue never has anything good to day about WM. This is just another example.

    Edit (actually googling around, he hates the Razr's software. Maybe thats his problem. Did not stop more than 50 million people buying and using the phones every day, did it?)

    Surur
    Last edited by surur; 11/08/2007 at 03:59 PM.
  18. #18  
    Here Mat Miller from the ZDNet blog does a point by point rebuttal of Pogue's criticism. Pity so many less people will read it.

    http://blogs.zdnet.com/mobile-gadgeteer/?p=679

    Surur
  19. #19  
    Another iPhone owner....

    Surur
    Of course. I've tried dozens and dozens of smartphones. Heck, I write for a technology blog where I talk about them. When I find a WM device better than the iPhone I'll move to it. If the Google platform is better I'll move to that. Symbian, same thing. Don't assume for one moment that because I use the iPhone platform that:

    a) I don't use it for business. In fact I went with the iPhone so I could streamline my e-mail and business (I get well over 500 valid e-mail messages every workday, so I need an e-mail workflow that's very powerful and as much as the WM zealots claim that WM e-mail is better than the iPhone, with the exception of deleting they are dead wrong IMO.)

    b) That I have never used WM devices. Here's an old photo of just my Treo collection alone: http://www.flickr.com/photos/benjaminhigginbotham/449650256/ and that's not even up to date (I'll try and get a newer one and post that, it's much cooler now). I have a similar HTC collection as well as RIM and Nokia collection. The Treos are out because we're doing a video profile on them, but given enough time I can dig up all my old devices (and probably their original boxes too). Oh man, now I want to find them all, what an awesome picture that would make. Could be a blog post with no text, just the picture.

    So yeah, I've used WM6 and 5... Oh hell I remember when I had the Philips Nino (and there was a smaller one too... Not the Nino but a... something). been there done that, isn't all it's cracked up to be.

    I'm not against MS or WM, I just don't think it's a good product today when compared to the rest of the marketplace. It's not awful, but it's also not the best. All MS has to do to sway me is create a more compelling product. I'm easy. Build it better and I'll buy it. The device to beat right now is the iPhone. Simple.
  20. #20  
    Quote Originally Posted by benjaminhigginbotham View Post
    Of course. I've tried dozens and dozens of smartphones. Heck, I write for a technology blog where I talk about them. When I find a WM device better than the iPhone I'll move to it. If the Google platform is better I'll move to that. Symbian, same thing. Don't assume for one moment that because I use the iPhone platform that:

    a) I don't use it for business. In fact I went with the iPhone so I could streamline my e-mail and business (I get well over 500 valid e-mail messages every workday, so I need an e-mail workflow that's very powerful and as much as the WM zealots claim that WM e-mail is better than the iPhone, with the exception of deleting they are dead wrong IMO.)

    b) That I have never used WM devices. Here's an old photo of just my Treo collection alone: http://www.flickr.com/photos/benjami...ham/449650256/ and that's not even up to date (I'll try and get a newer one and post that, it's much cooler now). I have a similar HTC collection as well as RIM and Nokia collection. The Treos are out because we're doing a video profile on them, but given enough time I can dig up all my old devices (and probably their original boxes too). Oh man, now I want to find them all, what an awesome picture that would make. Could be a blog post with no text, just the picture.

    So yeah, I've used WM6 and 5... Oh hell I remember when I had the Philips Nino (and there was a smaller one too... Not the Nino but a... something). been there done that, isn't all it's cracked up to be.

    I'm not against MS or WM, I just don't think it's a good product today when compared to the rest of the marketplace. It's not awful, but it's also not the best. All MS has to do to sway me is create a more compelling product. I'm easy. Build it better and I'll buy it. The device to beat right now is the iPhone. Simple.
    Another iPhone owner....

    Surur
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