I was very excited when I got my Windows Mango phone as a klout perk. I love gadgets and even though I am a little bit “learning curve resistant,” I was willing to leave my comfort zone to try out the Mango and see the phone that was trying to set itself up as Apple’s and Android’s competition. As far as I am concerned, the experience was a total failure and I have my reservations about the platform ever going anywhere.
I recently read Hillel’s article for the Business Insider about how he loved the Windows phone platform, and then saw Scobles response (which was not so enthused) and wanted to throw in my two cents.
While I had a VERY open mind, I really didn''t like using the Mango phone, here''s why:
Apps: Of course, coming out of the gate there is no way that Mango could have as many apps as the iphone or Android but the most annoying thing to me was that most of them cost money (although I did find out from Hillel Fuld that the App Marketplace let''s your try the apps for free- but at the time I didn''t know that.) Being a bit of a "freegan"- I regularly try out new apps because they are free and if they are the “lite” version I occasionally go on to buy the full version, but the Windows phone Marketplace was nothing short of pathetic and even if you can try them for free, it means that if you like them you are going to have to lay down money for it eventually. I only downloaded one app (which was free): Hopstop (to get around Manhattan on the subway) but after I downloaded it I could never find it on the phone- seriously, I kept browsing through the different options and NEVER FOUND IT – but the phone wouldn’t let me download it again because I already had it lurking somewhere in the recesses of my phone. This was beyond annoying so I downloaded it for the iphone.
SKYPE: I use Skype all the time to chat and speak to most of my friends and business contacts. I was in New York City, away from my kids and wanted to video chat with them but I didn’t have a data plan for my iphone, just the Mango and I had to go around searching for Wifi when I wanted to speak with them (or anyone who I regularly communicate with through Skype). Scoble revised his article to say that Skype will be coming to the Windows phone but until they do it is another major strike against it.
Size and Feel: Even though phones often strive to be light weight, which can be good, my Mango phone was made of a cheap light plastic and the back kept falling off. I looked for a good cover but there were barely any that were the right size so I couldn’t really find a good one. That meant that I was constantly snapping the back of the phone on and it made me crazy the whole time I used it.
Most annoying thing ever: For some inexplicable reason- mid-call, text or browse online, the phone would revert back to its menu. That meant that anything I was doing was interrupted. Calls were dropped, I needed to go back online to finish what I was doing and probably most annoying was that my texts were deleted and I needed to retype whatever I was working on. This totally bugged me.
While it was fun to have a new phone to play with- if given the choice, I would not recomend buying a Mango phone. It might be worth it to wait and see what they are able to do with it. I am open to seeing how it develops- and the Windows platform may indeed catch up to iphone and android but as of now it will be relegated to my junk drawer.
As always, you can find me on twitter @sarahnadav.