My Windows Phone 7 Christmas Story

Windows Phone 7

Rushing To Check Under the Tree

Finally the day had come; a neat little package arrived at my wife’s office containing my new Samsung Focus WP7. My wife had been away in Chicago for a few snowy days and after missing three flights due to bad weather she finally arrived home. I said hello, hugged her tightly, and promptly asked for her office keys so I could speed over to her office at 8:30PM to leave her and get my phone. Thankfully, she was pretty accepting of this.

I pulled into the parking lot, slightly bumping the parking spot cement block and rushed inside. The weather was cold, Christmas lights decorated nearby buildings, and this was my Geek Christmas. The drive home – a tedious fifteen minutes – was clearly too long to wait, so I opened the little brown package on the spot, swapped out my current SIM card and started it up. The dark room glowed green with the crystal clear picture of the default lock screen. With a graceful flick up of a finger, the endless possibilities of mobile development officially began…

Playing With My New Toy

So a couple of things about the Windows Phone 7; first, setup was so painless I barely remember it. I entered my Windows Live ID and password and all of a sudden my phone just started coming alive. Images, calendars, and contacts that I didn’t even know I had wired up to Windows Live started appearing.

I installed Netflix, a wireless connection, my work Exchange account, and Yelp. At this point, I would be pretty happy with the phone just as is, but of course, I had to dive a bit deeper. I synced with Zune and pulled down Music, Pictures, and Podcasts. As a side note, I really do find the auto-copy to SkyDrive every time you take a picture from the phone a very smart feature.

Of course, not everything was rosy, I did take a silly picture that was immediately placed into my background for the picture hub which I could not change even when deleting the picture from the phone. It turns out that holding the touch while on the background of the picture hub is how to do this and it must make a separate copy not bound to the original picture. It seems trivial at the time, but I can see how discovery of when to use long touches may be a slight usability issue when developing applications.

All and all, I am very excited about the phone and have been showing it off to many of my dev-buddies. The real excitement comes in the next few posts where I will be discussing the creation and deployment of my first WP7 application.

Stay tuned.

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