Big Day! As many of you have probably seen by now, Microsoft and Nokia announced a strategic partnership that will result in Windows Phone landing on Nokia phones. The agreement will help combine Nokia’s expertise in language support and their ability to reach a larger range of price points and geographies with Microsoft’s services like Bing and capabilities in developer tools and outreach. For more on the developer story specifically see this post by Matt Bencke.
Also today, Windows Phone Radio number 17 is ready to roll with some commentary on the Nokia deal, a quick recap of fashion week, and Matt and Brian’s Pinworthy apps, including the new Xbox LIVE game Tiki Tower, the photo apps Apict and Photogram by Samsung, and the new Amazon Shopping app. For Mike’s weekly Pinworthy apps, head to this post. Matt and Brian will contact lucky recipients of Windows Phone 7 Plain and Simple soon – more books are on the way. Download or stream the podcast now!
Also don’t forget to post a comment to be eligible for this week’s phone giveaway, how do you think Windows Phone is great for families? Is it the games? Music? Bing Maps and directions? Integrated calendar? Let us know!
Have a great weekend!
> VOTE for Windows Phone Radio for best audio podcast in this year’s Niney awards here.
How does my household use a WP7 device to be more organized?
Besides using the standard calendar synching the main way that I use my WP7 for household organization is sharing a OneNote Office Live notebook between my wife and myself that is synched with the Live Cloud Services.
My wife and I both have WP7 devices and I created a OneNote Notebook called “House of Payne” associated to my Live Account and then shared it with her and gave her permissions to edit the notebook which is easy to do within Live pages. I sent a link to the notebook via email to both of our Hotmail accounts where we each opened the attached link a copy of the OneNote notebook is copied down to the mobile device and is then opened within the OneNote Mobile application. When you do this it essentially becomes a separate OneNote notebook on your mobile device that will synch with the one in the Live Cloud.
Each of us can edit pages and add or remove pages and sections to the shared notebook via the mobile device. Additionally you can do the same from a standard non-mobile browser on your desktop or laptop and you can easily add items for shopping lists quickly with a standard keyboard. We also add weekly dinner menus to the pages as well as To Do items, etc. all of this either through the mobile OneNote application or through the online version via the desktop/laptop, or if you have OneNote 2010 you can do that with the stand alone desktop application.
A neat thing we did this past holiday shopping was take photos we took with our phones of potential gift ideas and inserted them into the “House of Payne” OneNote notebook and synched it with the cloud so that each of could see ideas either near simultaneously or later, etc. This was also true when shopping online where I would add links to items along with the photo, etc. of the potential gift into the OneNote notebook that if we were out physically shopping and saw the same item we could compare for the best deal based on earlier research.
I’m looking forward to later this year where all of the Mobile Office documents, etc. can be synched with my Skydrive like what can be done with SharePoint 2010 today. This will open up a lot more organizational capabilities for me and my household. Frankly, OneNote Mobile currently is really good and than EverNote which I used a good deal with my WinMo 5 device and my iPhone.
KING, GoingMADd and DPMstudent send your contact information to firstname.lastname@example.org
Just wanted to take a moment to say THANK YOU for the great comments here! There are so many awesome and thoughtful posts here it's going to be really tough to choose a winner. In my book, you are all winners. Awww. :) Thanks for the support folks, appreciate it!
What about a family Hub.
You could tag certain contacts as family(wife, kids, relatives... maybe the mother in law) and feed them in the family hub. Have a panel in the hub for schools. Nice way to collect all the facebook and twitter updates from my kids schools. All of my kid xbox achievements would be in there. FAmily oriented apps could hook it. Quick access to your nanny cam at home or GPS tracking of your kids cars ;) or even feeds from family oriented blogs... etc. Just a thought.
i use my windows phone to add to my son's wish list through out the year. when we are out and about, and my son see's something that he likes, i will take a photo of it. he knows that these photos get emailed to "santa". what he doesn't know is that they actually get uploaded to skydrive and all his friends and relatives now know what he wants and it makes birthday and christmas gift giving easier.
he'll often go through the photos and delete photos of items that he doesn't want as his whims change.
There are so many family friendly uses for Windows Phone 7 that it may be hard to narrow down. I do so much with my phone that I am amazed it can keep up. To start, the interface is very family friendly. The tiles are big and "easily-pressable," so even younger children can navigate to what they want. The games, even the free ones if you are on a budget, are generally entertaining while being able to walk away at any point. Currently, we've been playing Ilomilo, SkyDiver Classic, Planet Cracker, and Bubble Jump, but there are so many more.
The social aspects of the phone allow a family to easily stay in touch, too, with older children. The integrated Facebook is so unique, while great Twitter apps like Beezz and Rowi keep coming out. Seismic is pretty good too, but I have not had much use for it. Other useful apps, that save me time so that I can be with my family uninterrupted more include the great Emporia, which allows me to customize my news, Wooter, so that I can check Woot's daily deals, IMDB, and eBay.
One of my favorite apps to hand to the kids is LindyReader. Being that I have always been a bit of a geek, and I enjoy that my kids are as well, we can read any digital comics out there, with the ease of Dropbox connectivity. They can read X-Men and Superman, while I catch up on the Walking Dead and re-read the original Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. Since a comic really only takes about 20 minutes to read, it's perfect for those mid-length car rides. And the screen is so crisp that the graphics really look impressive.
My wife often steals my phone while she's cooking dinner. The Zune software handles podcasts so much better than her iPhone that she hooks my phone up to the stereo and listens to her shows. She'll do the same if we're baking with the kids. With the HTC Surround, you wouldn't even need the stereo! And if something spur of the moment happens, the camera loads so quickly that odds are good you'll get the picture.
I could not be happier with Windows Phone. The software and interface are beautiful and the Marketplace is quickly filling with apps for any purpose. The native apps for calendar, alarms, and family map are extremely useful for families on the move and, maybe most importantly, if your kid loses your phone, you can find it with Windows Live! The integration is seamless and it really does seem like an OS made for busy families.
Not enough love here for the Zune Pass. One subscription provides unlimited downloads for 3 Windows Phones. It's a tremendous value and a perfect way for families to enjoy music while saving them a ton of cash. Spread the love of music to the entire family. There's a lot of great music out there! The family that jams together... well nothing good rhymes with jams. Get a Zune Pass!
Matt and Brian,
I believe that kids these days are born with an innate desire to have a cell phone. In my case, I find Windows phone to be the perfect babysitter for 1 year old baby girl.
Whenever she's fussy -- at home, in the car, at a restaurant, anywhere! -- pulling out my Windows phone can instantly entertain her and restore sanity to the family.
- She has her own Zune playlist with her favorite songs synced to my phone. She smiles and sings along! (She loves to touch the bright, colorful Mickey Mouse on the screen.)
- We use the YouTube app to find her favorite videos. She smiles and claps!
- I can use the UVerse app to download full-length episodes of some of her favorite shows. If we're in the car without internet access, she still has her entertainment.
- I can quickly and easily get back to her videos using the history in the Music and Videos hub. When she’s really screaming, this quick access is invaluable.
We've been able to accomplish all of this without having to buy a single app. Out of the box, the phone was ready to be an alternative for a pacifier. If you've ever had a screaming baby, you know what a relief this can be.
Certainly there are other family benefits as well. My wife and I play AlphaJax against either other. My older kids love Fruit Ninja. We have some Flowerz addicts in the house. Gaming is great. The integration with Facebook and Windows Live helps us stay connected (calendar, messages, pics). The list can go on and on. But, for me, the usefulness of the phone as a babysitter for a one year old has perhaps been my greatest surprise.
I love Windows Phone 7! I got the Samsung Focus through my work and it was a great decision. Not only does it allow me to communicate with all the employees at my work it basically stops me from having to carry around a laptop everywhere I go. On the home front it has been even better. I am a foursquare whore, I check in everywhere and the speed at which it finds my location and checks me in is 10 times that of my old Blackberry. But I have to say the thing I love the most is the camera and the ability to take 720 HD video. I have taken some amazing looking pictures and video. I also use it to watch cartoons on road trips with my 2 year old. I can't wait to see where this platform goes and I will enjoy the ride getting there.
WP7 FTW: Brandt
i use my samsung focus to take photos of all my son's artwork and projects. they upload to skydrive, so they can be shared with his aunts, uncles, grandparents and cousins. then, when i run out physical space to store the art, i can dispose of them, but keep digital memories of the pieces.
Hi, I am very new to 'blogging' so this may be in the wrong place, but I have listening to the podcast while I work. Today I heard the 'Cool Mom Tech' contest I would like to put in my 2 cents. Besides all the great features that you mentioned, I also enjoy the Netflix app. We are able to view movies away from home. But that isnt the greatest feature.
My son (14) just had to have an iPhone. So we get into these 'conversations' they ususally start out with " I bet your Windows phone cant do this..." Then I say "well I bet your iPhone cant do THIS" and this will go on for a little while. I can always shut him up when I say one word... "ZUNE" So I guess you could say that it keeps him quiet and in his room. That's how I use my Windows Phone for the family. :)
My wife and I use the T-Mobile Family Room app for sending pictures keeping a common calendar (which I wish would merge with the standard calendar, but that's their fault -- if I could figure out how to open ports in my firewall to my Zimbra server, we'd sync there instead). We both have some of the free apps for keeping our youngest kids busy (Fireworks is the 1.5-year-old's favorite; the 4-year-old likes Swipy Man) and some more "mature" apps for the older kids. I love getting gamerscore on my morning/evening commute (I take the train), and my wife loves the e-book readers (Freda rules).
Windows 7 Phone is quite awesome. One of the best features for the family is the cloud integration. One quick way to communicate scheduling is the calendar integration. Add a ballet rehersal to outlook at home, and it will sync with the wife's phone within a few minutes. The location of baseball practice change? Update the address in the appointment, and she can click on the address to get directions.
Also, for the smaller children, there are quite a few children's e-book apps in the books and reference section of the marketplace. Some are really good with nice quality pictures and stories, others are not as good, but you can find a few gems that can keep your child entertained for hours. Also, with the way that the Zune app works, you can browse the book apps from the desktop or laptop, then purchase them to be downloaded on next sync/update.
OneNote is great for all kinds of lists: shopping lists, "honey-do" lists, etc. All shared through SkyDrive on the cloud.
I have a four-year-old daughter. I set the alarm on my phone to notify us when it is time to start her bedtime routine. She hears the familiar tone and says, "Yay! It's time for stories!"
I have also used my Zune Pass to stream Barney music during her bath. We have watched "Caillou" via Netflix while waiting at the airport. And I have purchased a few apps just for her, such as "PaperDoll." She likes playing some of Daddy's games too, like "Tiki Towers."
I have my wife pinned to my start screen so it's fast to call or text her.
I would use the camera more but the camera on my Dell Venue Pro has strange artifacts. Thus, I'd like to try an HD7. :D
I'm a new user of WP7. So far so good, but there are a couple of things I am looking to replace from iPhone and Android phones of my past.
1) Cozi Family Planner - looking at OneNote and other items from the comments, but it so far does not look like something as complete and easy to use as Cozi is in WP7 app store. It is great for real todo lists and shopping lists. The calendar is also good, but seems there are alternatives.
2) Evernote will have to be replaced with OneNote. Looking at the iPhone version, as need that on the iPad too for recipes, etc. The tags are also quite good for categorizing various topics. Good UI too and web access. Will explore OneNote, but please look at EverNote for improvements or add the app.
Sure the kids are going to like the Zune and XBox games. Would like to see more free add supported content/games. Trials are nice, but adds are okay too, and actually show something relevant from time to time.
WP7 are great for families.
I have a windows phone but my wife does not, but we both still take advantage of the feature of the phone to benefit our family.
Dedicated camera button – I LOVE THE CAMERA BUTTON. Anyone with kids knows that you need to be quick with the camera to be able to capture those precious moments in life. My wife has an iphone and by the time it takes her to get the camera app up and running the moment is gone. My wife has learned and now she tells me to take a picture or video with my WP7. Iin the matter of seconds the moment is captured.
SKYDRIVE-It was almost impossible for my wife and me to gather our pictures. What a hassle to sync our phones to the PC and then upload our photos from our PC to a photo sharing site. Now we are able to take photos and have them automatically uploaded to SkyDrive without having to think about it. Now we can share all our photos with who we want and it’s all in one place.
Calendar- My wife and I have a busy schedule with kids activities, work, and just life. We were never able to get our calendars sync between phone, computer, and email. Now when I update my phone calendar, my hotmail calendar updates, and we receive an email. What a life saver.
Zune-Probably my favorite. To be able to listen to any kind of music anywhere at any time is great. I often will play music on my Xbox 360 and my family will all dance around the house and then I continue the fun in the car with my phone. My toddlers love to listen to ZUNE. Unlike other music services, I can listen to anything including lullabies and nature sounds. Great to put babies to sleep. I love that I can purchase a movie once and watch it on my XBOX, PC, and Phone with no additional charge.
XBOX LIVE –My older kids love to play the Xbox live games and be able to switch the avatar features on the fly.
ALARM- schedule it once by day and time and it will ring on specified time and you don’t have to reset it after it goes off.
THE OS-We love it. The OS is so easy to navigate and intuitive. My 2 year picked up my phone and I shocked to see him navigate through my phone easily. He knows how to get to the Xbox live hub, which he loves. He also loves to take photos via the dedicated camera button.
This is going to sound corny I know, but the Window Phone 7 “REALLY” commercials are true. When I had an iphone I was always on the phone trying to navigating through it and yes I was the dad at my son’s game looking at my phone. Now with my WP7 I get the info I need quick and easy and I can watch my son’s games again. This is possible due to the above mentioned, and the required WP7 required specs, like the dedicated camera button, the back button, the home button, and the search button. I use the functions all the time and it makes thing quick.
Now I can spend more time with the family. That’s why Windows Phone 7 is great for families.
Everyone's comments so far really do prove a point- WinPhone7 is pretty darn awesome, and it will only continue to become better and better as time goes on.
Apps - XBOX live Games,and everything else to keep your young ones entertained :-)
Weather and live tiles only make it better
Camera - it just flies to Skydrive , i mean that is so awesome for backup purposes, and with 25GB of storage, it definitely rocks.
Movies(Zune, Netflix) in a pinch- especially on a Samsung focus with that pretty screen
Calendar- Soccer games, etc!
Zune Music- and Zune pass to stream anything for the kids without blowing your budget
Find my phone - for you know tracking your kids (if they have a WP7) <- that lucky kid. haha
Bing local search is awesome for restaurants,shops, etc
And the Wireless sync makes is even cooler and convenient, i mean no yucky cables tethered to the PC, files will just fly to your device
Facebook, twitter, and all of the other app goodies
Oh and one of my favorites:
Many local libraries may have eBook services including Eaudiobooks and Ebooks (much like the Kindle/Nook etc)
Its a service provided by overdrive, and basically you 'borrow' an eaudiobook, and its usually free, its pretty great!
Oh and normal phone functions too, like calling SMS, etc.
Plus the apps just keep expanding- i mean who knows what the next cool app a developer will create, who will expand beyond what Microsoft has already done
If all of my family members (me, my parents, my brother, and my dog) had windows phone's we would be as connected and inseperable (for better or worse) as ever.
A Day in the Life of a "Focused" Family.
One of the coolest features about Windows Phone 7 is the "Find my phone" features located on the live cloud services. You can make it ring, map it, lock it, or erase all of the content. All of those features are rather useful in more ways than i originally realized. While most parents are computer illiterate, mine are very tech savvy and devious. If i had a windows phone my mom would log on to the live portal under my account (why i trust her with my password i cant really say) and first make my phone ring just to wake me up a couple hours before i need to be up. She would then lock it and leave a message "sorry to wake you up...ok Im not sorry that was fun. bring some eggs and milk home from work, the password is pin is your birthday."
I begrudgingly wake up but instantly feel better realizing that i have a windows phone 7 samsung focus in my position. A completely non scientific study conducted amongst me myself and i (a very sizeable sample population) revealed that owning and/our just holding a windows phone device boost ones confidence, likeablility, and self esteem, by 5 points.
Without having to delve deep into an app or open my calendar i could see right from my lock screen or my home screen that i have to be at work in 3 hours. Keeping in mind my moms message I'd probably send out a message to my family to see if anybody else needed anything from walmart. Wp7 gives me several ways to do it. I could send out text messages fairly quickly to each person but my brother doesn't have text messages on his line, i could create a note in one note and then upload it to our sharepoint site for everyone in my family to edit and add items as needed but thats rather round about, or i could use facebook. With 3 quick taps Im able to change my facebook status. Of course everyone in my family would have me pinned to their start screen so my live tile would update on their phones with my new status and when ever they're paying attention they can read and respond to my status accordingly. Facebook sends me a message each time someones commented on my status Because each wp7 is dipped in awesome sauce i will be alerted whenever i recieve an email and my hotmail live tile will update to show me how many new messages i have.
On my way to work i can use my focus's built in fm tuner and listen to the radio. Inevitable i'd hear a song that i like and if i dont already have it my music collection i can easily search the zune marketplace and find said song. Because me and my brother share similar music taste i might as well send him the link to that song/artist as well which is as simple as pressing and holding on the song, and tapping share.
My fathers an avid gamer and has been since the days of Atari, If he had a Samsung focus, he would likely always be on it in his sparetime playing iblast moki or angry birds (when/if the game ever comes to wp7). racking up achievements and reliving his childhood in the arcades. Inevitably he'd feel the need to boast or gloat about a high score so while Im slaving at work he would send me a message on xbox live (instead of a text message so i can check his gamerscore to see if he's lying) about a new highscore that he got.
While im on lunch at work i'd try and beat his score and probably succeed in short order. Because Im in charge of entertainment in our house i'd probably also use that lunch hour to stream movie trailers via the msn movies app to see what might be good to go see as a family tonight, but money is tight so we'll probably just watch a movie on netflix. Not only is WP7 dipped in awesome sauce but they're made of win so they have a netflix app! i can easily see what movies are available on netflix and decide which one we should watch that night.
As i get off work i'd notice that i have new mails and check them and my facebook wall to see whatelse people need from walmart before i leave. on my way home i'd use the voice command features to call my mom and let her know that i was on my way home and got the items. In the middle of our phone call i'd hear what i think is my dog barking and her laughing non stop. My dog loves to play fetch, and he always barks nonstop when she gets home. most dogs see those as seperate tasks. my dog is running around her feet with a ball much almost to big for his mouth (he's a small dog) and trying to bark at her at the sametime. because all she has to do is hold the camera button down for 2 seconds and boom she;s in the camera, she was able to capture the whole cherade in 720p and post it to her facebook for all of us to see and laugh. On our super AMOLED phones of our HDTV the video is amazing and funny.
Dad got stuck in heavy traffic and because family dinner is an event on our calendars he simply taps the "Im running late" button and we all know that he will be home shortly.
After dinner we watch the netflix movie that i picked and "go to bed" (code for each family member going to their room pretending they're sleep so no one else will bother them but secretly laying in bed playing with their focus, if we all had one).
For my family WP7 gives my wife and I piece of mind. My 11 year old son is diabetic. We've struggled to keep his blood sugar in check. Because WP7 does all the great things mentioned in the previous posts my son is always using my phone to watch Netflix, play games, watch youtube or listen to his favorite zune music. Because he loves to my WP7 so much we've been able to get him to use to the "Stay Glucose To Me" app to manage his diabetes. Prior to WP7 it was a struggle to get him to monitor his levels. Now he is always asking to for my phone. He tracks his progress via the charts and takes an active roll in his diabetes management. WP7 is helping ensure my stays healthy and live a long life without the complications due to his illness. A second phone would be incredible. Thanks Microsoft!
My Windows Phone 7 is an excellent tool for bringing my family together and sharing precious moments. The seamless People hub allows me to quickly read and comment on what my friends and family are doing, I can snap pictures of my daughter in her school uniform and post it for loved ones to see on Windows Live or Facebook.
My wife loves the Zune Pass, my four year old daughter loves the coloring apps and some of the simple indie games. On our upcoming trip, I will rent an episode of her favorite cartoon through the Zune software and put it on my phone so she can watch it on the flight.
Plus, I bought the Paper Doll app that Mike put up on Pinworthy. But I haven't told my daughter about it, so on the flight, she gets to play with it for the first time and that should keep my fellow passengers happy for a few precious minutes.
My bad, I accidentally pushed post, but I was going to add that the kids can also watch youtube/netflix and read books on the kindle app if they are a little older
Actually, windows phone is great for families because of a lot of factors. For example, on my focus, I can stream kids music from Zune, let the kids play games (Xbox live or not), and let
I took a little programming in college about 6 years ago and I decided to pick it back up to program apps for the Windows Phone. I can't believe how easy it is to use VS 2010 Express and Expression Blend to create apps. Looking forward to what Nokia's partnership is going to bring to the development table.
My Windows Phone help is an excellent family aide because I can give my 5 year old, Amelia, my Samsung focus and have her sit and watch a cartoon on the fantastic Netflix app or slice up some fruit salad on one of WP7's best games - Fruit Ninja. It's an important thing for me to be able to keep her entertained because of our two newest editions - the twins - Jack and Julia. Amelia really feels like she's getting to do something special when she can sit and play with my Focus. I used to have an iPod touch, but the WP7 interface is just so much more user-friendly (especially with that "back" button) that even a kid can navigate back-and-forth between games and apps with a whole lot of ease.
^ Oh woops. I said "gold" when I meant "golf"
Hey Matt And Brian
Was just thinking how great Windows Phone 7 would be for my future family of the year 2026 where i might actually enjoy watching gold. Basically, if my kids wont leave me alone while i struggle to concentrate on the Tiger Woods of 2026, i could tell my kids to shut up and enjoy Angry Birds Ver. 5.9 on my cool Windows Phone and rest my feet upon their backs while they score my some achievements.
Also, my kids are going to be crazy busy when i force them into learning how to develop Windows Phone 7 apps at 5 different colleges so i need to know that i can trust them with remembering Grandma Choe's birthday so connecting the family together through the calender, they'll have no excuse when missing out on my beloved mothers birthday.
I just wanted to keep this short and i hope my dreams of living my fantasy life of 2026 can come true in 2011.
just in case Twitter: @TheCheeseManCan
Wow there are so many ways WP7 is great for families.
Starting with the interface – unlike my old iphone I can hand my WP7 over to the kids and they can find their stuff without having to flick through pages and pages of icons. They can easily find their games under the xbox live tile. In addition I have live tiles grouped into sections for each of my kids.
Xbox live – My son is an xbox nut. He loves being able to earn achievements while on the go. The games are awesome. Project Sunburst is his favorite(and mine). We’ve been protecting our neighborhood for months. I like the fact I can see what he’s playing on his xbox. My daughter loves Pocket God. Making the pigmies dance is her favorite.
The camera is great. The pocket to picture feature has brought tons of joy to the grandparents. Being able to quickly take pics means I never miss a photo op. With the new flickr app I am able to share those photos with little effort. I use thumba to edit my photos…great app. Doodle Doodle is another one of my daughter’s favs.
The office app is life saver. My wife was on her way to give an important PowerPoint presentation and I loaded the PPT on to my phone so she could practice in the car while we were on the way and noticed a typo. She began to panic and started to each for you her laptop. Have no fear WP7 is here. We used the office app to edit the PPT file and presentation was flawless
The whole family is using WP7 to get in shape. My son and I are almost to our goal of 100 push-ups…yes we are using the “hundred pushups” app. My wife is using the the couch to 5K app. She is almost there.
My daughter is the envy of her Girl Scout troop. We used the credit card terminal app to sell the most boxes of cookies. Making the payment process easy made selling easy. Want some cookies?
Everyone loves Netflix. All those movies provide great entertainment.
Bing and Seymor and great for finding new restaurants. On the weekends we use Seymor to help find a place for lunch. We put in what we’ve looking for and always go to Seymor’s first pick. So far so good.
There is one problem with WP7. It’s so useful and so much fun for everyone I never get to use MY phone. A second phone would be fantastic!!! I would be able to experience it for myself.
When I have kids I will use the phone to let them play some games, eventually when they get xbox live accounts i can moniter what they are playing and use it to compair my achievements and gamerscore to make sure i stay on top :) also keeping track of milestones with the camera and video (love the idea of getting to my camera more quickly) ps if you are looking to give out more of those books I would love one.
Loving the Windows Phone 7. Finding it easy to stay in touch with family and keep up with them on Facebook and text messages. Do not miss my iPhone!
I am looking forward to getting a windows phone to check out all the great features! For me though, I am a heavy excel user and would like to see the usability of it on the windows phone. This way if I needed to do a quick update of a file or review some data on a spreadsheet I could just whip out my WP7 check it out, update the file, send out the email and done! I didn’t have to leave the park or the family, didn’t have to go to the computer away from what was going on and get it all fired up, everything I needed was on the phone and I did what I needed to do and done!
I enjoy the podcast each week keep em’ commin!
There are many ways that Windows Phone 7 is great for families. In my personal experience:
* My Dad is very interested in the wide range of great apps. He's also jealous that I can do things on Windows Phone 7 much faster than he can on his BlackBerry. (Work / Apps)
* My Mom loves the user interface. She has resisted smartphones due to confusing UIs, but Windows Phone 7 has won her over. It's simple and easy to use. The apps for Outlook, Calendar, and Zune help too. (Organization)
* My brother is excited by all of WP7's features, specifically Xbox LIVE and Zune. (Entertainment)
* My three sisters enjoy using the Facebook app, games, and more. (Social)
Basically, it differs for each person in my family. But they all love Windows Phone 7. The interface is a huge hit, and it is a great replacement for our Zunes. Were it not for the data plan, every single person in my family would already own a Windows Phone.
We recently went on a trip with a 10 hour drive in each direction and having my 12 year old daughter download a bunch of trial games to play on the way made the drive a lot easier to deal with. We just hooked it up to the car charger and she was good to go.
Where it has probably impacted our lives more, however, is that my wife and daughter have been able to participate and get some insight into what I do for a living by testing and making suggestions about games that I'm developing for the phone. I hope that this may foster some more interest from my daughter in learning about software development going forward, and who knows, maybe she'll someday create a mega hit for Windows Phone.
When I released my first game for Windows Phone, Popper 2, I had custom t-shirts made for my wife and daughter that had the game logo on the front and the back read "OFFICIAL GAME TESTER". This was a fun way to let them know that their help was appreciated and to let them know that they were an important part of the process.
Windows Phone is great for families because there are games that anyone can enjoy. Sometimes you want to have sometime to relax. The phone is great because there are lots of great games for adults, but many more that kids love. In those moments when your kid or young siblings are annoying you, giving them your phone to distract them is a great tool.
Apart from that there are other great features that the phone has. Zune pass allows for us to stream music on long trips. The calendar can be used to plan trips as well, and Bing Maps will get you there!
Awesome podcast! I work 40 miles from home. Although I have been married for 28 years to the same woman, she still manages to annoy me with certain things she does. Near the top of the list, when it's near quitting time, she will invariably text me and ask "have you left yet?". More often than not, I am still at work and do not want to answer back, "leave me alone. I am in the middle of something important and although you are really important also, if I do not finish this report for my boss...". She does not seem to understand this principle! Since getting my Windows Phone this past Christmas, now she can log into my live.com account and use the find phone, map it feature to see where I am at!
Best of all, it is FREE and I don't have to pay AT&T for their solution for this. Now I arrive home not as peeved! Thanks Live.com!!!
My family is a little smaller than most more developed families, just the wife and I! But having lived away from home the last 4 years WP7 now makes it easier to keep in touch with our friends and larger family. The seamless integration in the people hub allows me to actually keep up with what my friends are doing. Being on the move, the phone makes it much easier for me to check my Facebook account and see what everyone is up to. Basically WP7 helps my wife and I feel a little closer to home even when we are far away.
is there any chance that the WP7 update coming up will have volume control functionality, and calendar to-do list syncing
Great comments everyone, Keep them coming!
@filipich I will send you a Mariners hat to impress your friends this season
What's up Skippy? A note for Brian...go A's!!!
I received an e-mail from the wife the other day that One Note is now available for the iPhone. I was thinking "What the hell does she care about that for?", and then it occurred to me, to-do lists!!!! It's not like I am listening Windows Phone podcasts all day. I must have got her thinking about this when I mentioned the T-Mobile "Family Room" app. The next you know, she'll see something about Foursquare and having the ability to know where I am 24/7.
My wife and I travelled to New York last December to visit my brother. We had never been in New York before, and were a little apprehensive about getting around in the Big Apple. My Samsung Focus came in very handy during the whole trip.
While waiting in Minneapolis for our connecting flight, I simply typed in the flight number into Bing search to get the latest flight status. My wife and I played Trine's Hangman while waiting to board the plane. On the plane, I listened to my podcasts with the Zune player.
Open table was an indispensible app during our trip. It made it so easy to reserve tables at restaraunts. We used the New York Subway app to help us get around town. For shorter jaunts, Bing maps helped lead the way. And of course, we used the camera to take lots of fantastic pictures, which we upload to facebook to keep our friends back home up to date on our activities.
My WP7 was indispensible on our trip -- it replaced a camera, tour guide book, and made getting around so easy that we were able to focus on simply having a great time in New York.
Syncing calendars makes it so much easier to keep track of upcoming events, whether it's a doctor's appointment, a school play, or a concert. There's nothing we can do about the fact that so many of us have lives that are too hectic. But the WP7 calendar's integration with Outlook and Windows Live makes is much easier to make sure we don't miss the important moments.
Snapping quick pictures and being able to easily upload them is great for sharing moments with relatives that they otherwise never would have seen. The social network integration makes relatives who live far away seem like they are much closer.
The Nokia news was great too! It was a huge vote of confidence in the platform by the biggest player in the cell phone market. I can't wait to hear Nokia WP7s as prizes in future episodes! Keep up the great show!
Juan.....have you tried the Developer Blog here ?
Excelent, now i want to know more about the develop in WP7, ; )
Hey Guys, I'll keep it short and sweet. kinda.
OneNote - my wife has an iPhone, (but wants --needs-- a WP) and she snatched the Onenote app while it was free, and syncing shopping lists, simple budget plans, honey-do's is RIDICULOUSLY easy.
Calendar - I created a windows live account for both our family as a whole, and my 7 week old daughter, so that we each have our own color coded calender appts. ex. 2 month check-up is pink for my daughter, inlaws in town is purple for my wife (hehe) and vacations (which are easily planned with onenote) are in green. and of course I'm teal because being a mariners fan theres no other color to choose. Easy to tell whats what and when for everyone.
Quick Picture (and video) is brilliant. Can't have too many pictures of a brand new baby.
People Live Tiles are sweet, each of my family members are on my start screen, for quick, easy access including my daughter who has a facebook :) so when my mother-in-law posts on her facebook wall I can relay the message.
Although I wish that the phone had support for more than one facebook account, because when I take a good picture of the little lady it would be nice to instantly upload it to her facebook for all of our extended family to see, or we can solve that problem and she could just use her new FOCUS ;) She'd be the youngest person EVER with a Windows Phone. Brand her for life. Good Business right there. Or my wife can ditch her iPhone. Either one is a win-win.
Accounts - Because I have the calendars syncing with all of the accounts, if my wife wants to check her email on my phone, she just needs to flip to the settings-accounts and check the email box and off we go.
Our family has bonded with ilomilo. We love those little guys.
All in all. My family loves my WP7. My daughter likes music, so my surround is WONDERFUL when I need to calm her down real quick.
Thanks guys keep em coming. Looking forward to the new update.
Brian and Matt,
I have three boys - aged 6,8 & 10. I use a range of Apps/WP7 functions in the course of a normal week. Before I touch on the family aspects, it's important to know that 9-5 MON-FRI my phone is a business tool to help me do my job. It also doubles as a tech gadget for me as a techhead. Then it also serves this wonderful role as Helper to me family......It helps us get things done and have fun;
To give you an idea, this can typically be grouped into a couple of categories.
- Games nights with the kids - Love using the gorgeous looking Dice Box to "shake and roll" with my phone. For Yahtzee, Monopoly or anything else, no longer need to look for actual dice!
- Getting XBOX Live achievements and points to try and keep up with my kids (lost cause there) as they rack up gamer points from Halo. Feeling absolutely whipped by all three! lol
- Morfo. This is a really cool little app my kids have had fun with. Take a picture, morph it up and animate it and use voice records to make it talk. lots of lols.
- Zune, play our music in the car when we are travelling together or connected to the Stereo at home - getting the wifey and the kids singing along to al our favourite pop songs. Great way to get the kids into loving music.
It's summer here in Australia - and living not far from the beach, our normal check now for planning a day at the beach is as follows;
- Weatherbug; checks the local weather outlook - and allows us to plan the day).
- Pocket Tides; Let's me see what time low tide is expected to be for our day - for walking out amongst the rocks and crabs
- When in the car, my oldest boy likes to keep an eye on my driving speed - so Speedometer gets a workout in the back seat on my phone (and I get an earful if I exceed the limit by more than a km or two)...Junior Police Office in the making!
- Because it's Summer - and I'm Australian - I therefore am a Cricket Nut! Live Cricket lets me keep tabs on my State team or the Australian team where they are playing with updated scores and info quickly - so I don't get a chorus of "...Dad stop looking at your phone and come throw us in the water".
- Bing Maps (and satellite images) to work out where we are and tag favourite places we can return to on the beach (you can tag any map location to a favourite on the home screen)
- Bing search - if we need to look something up whilst we are travelling.
- And finally. this great new local app (free) has been launched for the area I grew up in and live nearby still - Mornington Peninsula, listing great attractions to see and do, as well as direct bookings access for lots of the venues, notes, map and other functions. Amazing (and sentimental for all the places I gre up around).
Capturing those special moments in time & Sharing;
- You can't beat WP7 for such fast and effective photo/tagging/comment sharing to your loved ones. With family scattered over some distance, I have WP7 Camera shots of the kids and place we go to uploaded to skydrive and upped to Facebook with tags so my family can see the latest fun times we are having together. Just awesome.
- Yotube. I wen't to my mates first live Gig last weekend ( http://tinyurl.com/4a9ulfv & http://tinyurl.com/4tlduwn ) and used my Focus to take some short clips, adding some vide effects and uploading to youtube for all their family and friends to see. They loved it.
You just can't go past WP7. I hope this gives you a little flavour of how in just one summer (a couple of months) our Samsung Focus has become a vital (quick and efficient) family tool. It's not just a toy - it really helps our family spend time together and do things we love doing.
WP7 is awesome for my family. The xbox games keep the kids happy and entertained when we are out and about. I use the achievements to create contests between my kids and that keeps them playing so my wife and I can enjoy a nice meal. The pocket to picture feature is the best. I take more pictures than I ever have. Now I don't miss those special moments. Zune pass allows me to download everyones favorite music. My wife uses onenote to send me shopping lists. Much better than e-mail. It's quicker and easier to find a onenote than it is to find emails and it's easier for her use onenote while she's on the PC. It's like having a direct link. We just moved to a new city and Bing has been our navagator. Sad Trombone is always a guarenteed laugh.
Windows phone is great for familes because I see what are kids are playing on xbox. At&t family maps allows me to give my kids extra freedom without having worry too much about where they are.