Windows Phone 7 Impressions

I went to a Windows Phone 7 event on Saturday. There’s stuff I’d like to talk about (hot women everywhere, freely flowing alcohol, torrid passion into the night) but hey, what happens in South Bay stays in South Bay.

Just kidding. It was a fun day of hanging out with about 50 other people eager to learn more about the new Windows platform for phones. I didn’t know much about it or the earlier versions but I could compare it to the iPhone, which I know a bit more about. In some ways, they moved closer to the iPhone (eg., they gave up some direct access to the phone hardware in favor of a more unified end user experience). In some ways, they’re quite different — like their system of “Live Tiles”, which you can think of as large icons that change dynamically (eg., a social networking app might have a Live Tile that’s constantly showing different friends from your network).

From a developer perspective, Windows Phone 7 has some significant differences from iOS4 as well. For example, the iPhone stuff is built on a single system that integrates OpenGL and Cocoa. But in Windows, you can either use their standard window stuff with Silverlight or you can do 3D graphics with XNA but you combine them.

It’ll be interesting to see where the platform goes from here. I think it has a lot of potential.

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