I have been using Windows OS on handheld devices from a very long time, back then it was known as the Windows Mobile. The journey from HTC Viva to Current Lumia 640 DS was a long ride with lots of ups and down.
The current Stable Windows Phone 8.1 Update 2 is a drastically improved version of the earlier Windows Mobile. The operating system is everything that a hardcore smartphone user needs. Smooth, fast and efficient, but this will not help you in deciding whether to go for the Windows Phones or not. If you are looking for one single review to rely on and make a decision about your next or first smartphone then you are standing on cross, I would say.
Getting to the point,
We will go through the reviews in four parts,
3. Differences from the other popular handheld operating systems
4. Final Conclusions
a. The UI
The UI is smooth,real smooth no matter how low the RAM is. I still remember the way the Lumia 510 worked on 256 mb RAM and that performance has been improved a lot on the WP 8 devices.
The 8.1 update brought three rows of tiles on the home screen and also the ability to the set an image as the background to the tiles.
b. The camera
The camera app as well as all the additional camera applications that come pre-installed with the Lumia series are wonderful and one app from that group that deserves mention is ‘Lumia Selfie’
c. Battery Life
I have used other OS and WP devices and came to the conclusion that the WP 8.1 sucks up less battery, here I am trying to concentrate more on the whole OS and not being device specific so I won’t be able to give specific battery hours but certainly the OS is very light on the battery.
I can go on and on about the pros but that won’t be helpful for making the decisions, turning to the cons.
a. Store and app support
The application base is growing well. Most of the applications that are available on the other popular OS are also coming to the Windows Phone store but certain applications are still yet to come such as snapchat, Quora and the current YouTube application just opens up youtube on your browser but with the fast growing store I am expecting these problems to disappear pretty soon.
b. Third party keyboards
I would love it if the phones start to support third party keyboard applications, the stock one is not so bad but using keyboard application would overall increase the experience.
3.Differences from the other popular handheld operating systems
First time users will find the homescreen tiles concept wonderful and user friendly but setting up of proper tiles sequence can take time.
Second difference is lack of the widgets that Android has incorporated in a well manner.
After-market development is nearly nil for WP devices so if you are a Flashaholic then this OS is not for you.
For my readers looking for comparison of UIs I am adding screenshots from all the other OS running devices that are available at my disposal
Android (Xperia L)
Windows Phone 8.1 (Microsoft Lumia 640)
4. Final Conclusions
From my person opinion, I love the OS but I can’t be the one telling you which phone you should buy. Smartphones are a very personal part of ones life and you should be the one deciding that but I can be the one telling you that you will not regret buying a device running Windows Phone 8.1
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