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Poll reveals that consumers desperately want a notification center in Windows Phone 8

WP Central

In a poll conducted this past weekend here at Windows Phone Central, 7,640 participants voted on the top-three features (out of an optional nine choices) they wanted most in Windows Phone 8.

Although the full consumer feature list has yet to be revealed by Microsoft, due to the leaked SDK a few weeks ago a lot of the new options have been detailed already. In turn, we asked users what they thought was missing (or we saw no evidence for) in Microsoft’s next-gen mobile operating system.

The results are certainly interesting and by large margins the top three choices by users are clearly discernable...

 

The top-three results from community feedback

A total of 22,922 votes were collected over the three-day period on the nine features users desired the most. Since each participant could vote up to three times that reduces to a possible 7,640 individuals. That ranks as our highest poll in terms of community participation and makes the results quite significant (voting was cookie and IP logged, reducing the chances of “spam” voting).

The top three results are certainly interesting:

  1. Notification Center – 22%
  2. Close App – 17%
  3. Full system back up – 14%

Although Windows Phone 8 is confirmed in having notifications extended to the Lock screen via third party applications the ability to have a centralized area where notifications can be checked is highly desired by users. We saw this both in comments leading up to the poll and in the early voting where it quickly took the lead and never let go.

Consumers evidently want the choice of a Notification Center for a few reasons. While Windows Phone 8 allows multiple Live Tiles with counters, Toast notifications (“pop ups”) and now the ability to have visible updates on the Lock screen for 3rd party apps, users want the more traditional model of managing notifications that is found on Android and OSX ‘Mountain Lion’.

The complaint by people has some merit—after all, not everyone wants to pin every app to the Start screen and having an area where one can pull everything up in one shot does have its advantages. Still, with Toasts, Live Tiles and now the Lock screen options in Windows Phone 8, it seems as if Microsoft has tried to expand them where possible. Having said that users still clearly want another option and it will be curious to see if Microsoft obliges in the future by including some type of notification center.

Coming in second was Close App by which users can close apps running in the Multi-tasking area on Windows Phone. The model is based off what is already found in the multiple tabs of Internet Explorer where one has may “windows” of opened tabs and the user can simply close tabs by simple tapping a traditional “X” in the upper right corner.

WP Central

Multi-tasking in Windows Phone currently lacks an "X" for apps

Once again, although Windows Phone does an admirable job of “freezing” apps in the background and managing memory for them, users still want the ability to close out apps. Part of that is because the multi-tasking (“tombstoned”) apps are limited currently to just 5 slots and it will reportedly be upped to 7 in Windows Phone 8. Some feel that is not enough and one way to manage that is by closing out a game or some other recently opened app to free that slot.

We agree with Microsoft that users shouldn’t have to manage such things and adding an “X” could lead consumers to focus on memory instead of just using their phone. On the other hand we don’t really see the harm in adding it as it would seem very intuitive (Android and iOS have similar options available to users today) Other people have suggested the webOS model by which users flick the app card up to remove the app from “the deck”. Though certainly original and fun, the IP issues surrounding such a method may be prohibitive.

WP Central

The current unofficial backup method for Windows Phone users

The third top requested feature is a Full-system backup for device transfers garnering 14% of the vote. Windows Phone 8 does allow app (and presumably game) backups by saving the settings and hopefully game progress but users clearly want a simple 1-click solution to saving everything either on their computer’s hard-drive or “in the cloud”.

Currently it is not known if Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 will allow the user to backup their entire phone and although the need seems rare to restore we’re sure once a users loses a phone or upgrades to a new one the need becomes very high.

Issues that may stand in the way include OEM hardware differentiation which could effect restores to new devices in addition the amount of space required for the backup (not to mention the time). Still, iOS can do this via iTunes and it seems like something that evidently people truly want.

 

Odds and ends

WP Central

Our poll asked users their top three choices so that we understand the level of importance. Having said that clearly users may prefer to have all of the choices available to them in a future update.

We found it interesting that things like Universal Search (the ability to Bing search within the device, including email and Office) ranked 5th with 10.5% of the vote and that it ranked below Folders (11.78%).

Universal Search seems like one of those features that users could take advantage of nearly everyday. Indeed we’ve seen an early shot of what looked to be a universal search option back in 2011. Will that make it into Windows Phone 8 in the end? We’re not sure but we would certainly like to see it at some point.

WP Central

How homebrew 'Folders' look on Windows Phone

Folders is something that users also rank highly amongst new features they want to see in Windows Phone 8 especially since there is no evidence that it is coming with the initial release. Folders, which are currently available as homebrew option on Windows Phone 7, are a neat and intuitive way to organize apps of the same variety. For instance, we have a lot of camera and photography apps on our Titan II so having a folder name “Photo” with all our apps lumped together makes sense. Otherwise those apps are simply organized alphabetically with no sense of semantic connections. In turn we end up forgetting about those apps unless we scroll through our massive app list.

The folders model, familiar to those who use PCs has recently been extended to both iOS and Android once again making them conducive for people switching over. In that regard, we think adding them, as an option would benefit Microsoft.

Rounding out the bottom was more background colors (7.9%) landscape Start screen (7.6%), more security options for the lock screen (4.71%) and the most interesting, more keyboard options (4.5%).

WP Central

Windows Phone users love their keyboard

The fact that Windows Phone users ranked more keyboards so low is a testament to just how happy they are with the native keyboard’s performance. Currently, Windows Phone users cannot add any 3rd party keyboards to the OS and given the choice it seems most users simply don’t want nor desire Swype or Swifkey, which are extremely popular on Android. Though there is zero evidence that Microsoft will allow third party keyboards anytime soon, even if they granted permission it would seem that Swype and SwifKey would have a hard sell to end users.

WP Central

 

Wrapping it up

In the end, the data collected gives a good snapshot of what consumers want out of Windows Phone 8 in the future and Microsoft would best be served by trying to match these preferences.  Microsoft clearly have an interest in user feedback and we have shared the results with them and their engineers for future consideration in later OS updates.

From the data gathered though we can see where Microsoft has excelled (their keyboard, user interface, design) and where users think they are lacking (device backups, managing notifications, closing out apps).

Hopefully users will get what they want with future versions of Windows Phone 8. Thanks to the Windows Phone community for your participation!

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Reader comments

Poll reveals that consumers desperately want a notification center in Windows Phone 8

123 Comments

really? I think the implementation in w8/wp8 is perfect. beyond live tiles, you choose exactly which apps you get lockscreen notifications for and how detailed some of them are.

what more do people want? some sort if drop-down chrome to navigate through with recent notifications... that seems very un-'metro' (or whatever its called) to me personally.

Please no more arguing over the notifications... Half the other threads are of people insisting it's necessary while others say it's fine. Can't we all just get along? Or agree to disagree :P

Why not instead of just drop down, a left to right or right to left swipe, like Microsoft could do something similar to charms for windows phone 8. You could see your notifications by swiping from the top right to top left. To access quick settings like connectivity and brightness, swipe from the bottom left to the bottom right.

The funny part is, I didn't know someone had the concept already up and pictured, but I think it would work out very well just because the only times you swipe in this areas are you get rid of notifications and to swipe the 3 dots up. However, I do really hope they do something like that, it would makes users happy and it would also stay close to the metro design statement

That are my words. Everybody of us had this notification center on our earlier dumbphones. Now i dont have this option and i dont miss it! Life is easier without it. Not. center are the '90. Beside that use your brain more to remember those things. And for all the people which want this option we have it. Go to a contact swipe to the right to history and you have your memo - notification center. And if you want more people add a group to the start of important people so you have all news of them, what more is needed in the time where we all are connected all the time. In a second you are on every social network. So you dont need a notification to look at later, instead you answer instant to every message - email

Its most important for apps. If I don't want CNN on my start screen but without firing up the app, I want to see breaking news notifications...this Is what's for...don't understand why people fight against more features. Do you think this will slow down the phone?

A lot of apps like Whatsapp are not visible in the contacts. And if the apps are not pinned to the home screen, you'll never see the number saying you have a message. I could pin all my apps to the home screen, but the more apps you have pinned, the faster you drain the battery. I used to have a lot of junk on the home screen, but the loading of all those icons everytime I unlocked my phone killed the battery before I got home from work. Also, I'm not the type to always have my phone in my pocket, and a lot of time when I do have my phone with me, I don't check it even if it vibrates because I don't want to bother the people I'm talking with, so I miss a lot of notifications. Maybe one thing they could to not use a notification center would be to at least add a number beside the name of apps in the big apps list when you have a message waiting, that way even if an app is not pinned you can still see the numbers.

ok, not trying to hate or 'argue against features'.. but the point of selecting your own lockscreen notifications covers this. so just like email and messaging now, you can add things like kik and whatsapp to the lockscreen, even if not on start screen..

maybe because I got used to it on windows 8 is why I really like it, but I feel this is a pretty great solution and prefer it to a typical notification center and see no reason to want both.

Ok I think you don't understand  why some people don't think Live tiles are enough. It's not to argue that Live tiles aren't great, I love them, WP8 live tiles are even better IF third party apps can do the message preview thingie. And even then it limited because it takes up to much space on the start screen.
I use 2 linked inboxes for email, one for personal emails and another for work. If I decide to use large tile for both, thats half of my screen. Lets say I want one for messaging, there goes 3/4 of the screen, I would prbably leave to other two medium tiles for "phone" and "People". Thats all I get for my inmediate start screen. For ME that aweful, I use Whatsapp a lot and would like to use Skype when it's up to par. Maybe there will be other chat services I would like to use in the future, google talk maybe, who knows. Add to that plenty of othr apps that can/could use the live tile for important information that I would love to see in the tile. I don't know about you but I really don't like to have a very long start screen and to be scrolling a lot to get to see every thing. And worse yet, I hate to have to enter the app just to see IF the message/informacion is important. Thats where the toast notifications are "incomplete" to me. In messages/emails, if I miss it I have to enter to check what it is. Granted, WP native apps are fast enough, but third party aren't. We still have to see who would things go in WP8 but I don't see it being much faster for things like Whatsapp and Skype (we'll have to wait and see).
What many of use would really like is a place wher you can see quickly and rich enough information about the latest notifications/events. Now that WP8 gets rid of the "white space" it makes even more sense to let you scroll to the left to a "notification center" where you can see a simple list of the latest messages/emails with a preview and sender, messages from apps, reminders and info from apps that i DON'T have pinned to to the start screen (this is very important for some people, I don't want to pinn everything to be able to get notifications!!!), etc.
I believe this would complement perfectly the live tiles, specially the small and medium ones, even the large ones that even with the previews the present, could posibly take to long to cicle through lets say 10 messages/emails (thats where I would "prefer" to enter the email client and maybe I really don't because none are important).
Just my 2 cents

Instead of/or in addition to the app closing we need a way to lock specific apps so they don't disappear from the list of apps. I think the current limit is 5, and apps can vanish even if they are still running.

That's what I think also. I don't care about closing apps since the memory is well managed and I don't think it would make the battery last longer. What I want it to be able to pin apps so they stay open. I would definitely do this for Facebook and Whatsapp. If it was also possible for toast notifications to verify if an app is already running before opening it again it'd also be great. Right now, everytime I click on a toast for Whatsapp or Facebook I have to wait for the app to reopen even though they are often already opened in the background.

That's like saying "I want my car to have only two weels. And my bike to have 4". People don't understand how their system is supposed to work and how it's supposed to be used. Close apps? Still today? THERE IS NO NEED FOR THAT. makes me totally angry. Notifications work just fine as well. If an app fails to do it properly, report to the app developer that he failed. That app would fail with a "proper" notification center, too.

Legitimate question: Should Microsoft just ignore what consumers want no matter how illogical? Is that a winning strategy?

Listen, i think Facebook is the dumbest thing ever but it would be dangerous for me to not ever cover it here and treat it like the phenomenon that it is.

@danoel rubino people want thing what they are used to have. Windows phone is a new operating system so i think people want features which they had before. But look back, we had PC mouses with tracking balls inside, with cables, we had phones with cables and people said in that time to mobile phones "we dont want them" but they get used to it over time. So is with WP7 WP8 people are not familiar woth it like with iOS becauce they switched to WP7 and "missed" somw features. Which WP7 have but in another way. I personally think WP is perfect and without a backup because i dont need one. All the things people want now are usable only if a use for them exist but my windows phone works like a charm! Never had a faulty, freez or anything. So no need to restore things...

"Windows phone is a new operating system..."

It's nearly 2 years old and has not excactly caught on. You can only give a "it's new!" pass for so long before you have to adapt.

I want a phone where I can follow EVERY THING THAT HAPPENS, Im kind of sick of the randomly missed events because of lagged Live Tiles and missed Toasts. Thats why something needs to be done with the broken notifications in WP.
Seriously... the image MS is trying to paint... a "quick, in and out, back to life UI", "information at a glance" etc, is so wrong its kind of embarrasing. I have never browsed a phone as much as I do with my WP.
It has nothing to do with wanting old features that "I'm used to". I want to be informed, thats it.

It's not about badly running apps, it's about clearing what's running so you only see what you want to switch to. The current process is a chore as you have to switch to the app and press back a million times to close apps.

that's incorrect ONLY APPS that have the ability to RUN in the BACKGROUND uses resources, other than that those apps pose no threat to memory usage or performance, so why. you want the ability to close an app in WP8 wgen the phone will have the ability just like 7.5 to suspend apps and apps that are not in use will open them after learning tour"APPS" habit

I like the lock idea too. Go straight to what I was doing within the app and not have to start it up from scratch would be nice.

How can it be incorrect when I never said anything about memory usage or performance? I know exactly how the background suspension works - but it doesn't stop those apps you've left running from disappearing from the quick switch list (as there is a limit of 5). The ONLY way to stop them, is to relaunch the app from scratch, or turn off your phone

Just bring us a notification center. And what about ONLINE play.. Was supposed to be coming with mango and now it's biting the dust

I am so excited about the multi task close button because I brought that up long long time ago on Microsoft Suggestion Box. It's one of the hottest topic on the Suggestion Box.

they're not open meaning "RUNNING" right, no? apps are in suspended states...7.5 doesn't have true multitasking, so what threat they pose...only 5 max are displayed...is that your definition of "alot"

There is one valid use case for it. If you have too many open at once and go to open more you will eventually lose your state in the older apps. Whilst you could just bring any apps you want to keep saved to the front before opening another in the current system, closing less desired ones from the screen would be more elegant as a solution

What would be even better than having to close apps before opening new apps all the time to save the ones you want to stay opened would be to be able to pin apps so they stay open for as long as it's pinned, and only app that aren't pinned can be closed by opening an extra app. Why close 6 apps to save one app (and have to do the same thing over and over again throughout the day) when you can simply pin one app and never have to think about it again?

As for now, the first thing we need is to be able to close the apps in the multitasking view! With a flick up/downwards or with a "close" button, it's the same. We definitely need that! It's waaaay more important than a notification center, as we already have live tiles and hone screen notifications.

You can close the apps buy switching to the app and pressing the back button. 
 
Are you saying there isnt a way to close the app or you want it to be easier to close?  Right now, you can close the app and have no background apps running. 

Sometimes you have to hit the back button several times, depending on the app.
It's archaic and by far the worst thing about the phone.  If it's not fixed in 8, I'm out.

While you're right about it being archaic, I wouldn't call it the WORST thing about the phone. My back button gets a LOT of use, but it hardly causes me grief.

Yeah, hitting the back button so many times is extremely annoying especially in IE where you might want to leave off where you were and close the app.

Would certainly be nice to have a notification history and they already have everything in place to show it without any overhead. Most be patents or something keeping it out. Or maybe similar to the limited color choices they just want to make us upset for no reason.

Anyone who thinks the current system of live tiles and toasts is sufficient should try the eBay app and tell mw where to look when the toast is missed and the rule isn't live and is way down at the bottom of the screen. Or miss a reminder from TV Show and you look at your phone and have no indication of that. The current system is good but can be improved. Stop being the WP equivalent of a blind fanboy and realize this platform is not perfect and can be improved. And that criticism can be positive if it's acted upon.

I haven't seen anyone being a blind fanboy about not having a new feature. In any case, I agree about needing a notification center as a welcome addition... although quite frankly, eBay is as much at fault... they could just do its own notifications screen in the app.

The app told the OS a notification. Why should I open the app if to me the notification was worthless? Its extra steps all because I pulled my phone out of my pocket five seconds late.

That's the main reason I voted for a notification centre. The way windows notifications is great, but I often find myself receiving texts from a couple of people, going in and reading one, but missing the second text because once I've opened messaging it loses the counter. I don't want the behaviour to change though - sometimes its useful to leave a message unread for later and still have it easy to spot when additional messages come in, but a way to make sure you haven't forgotten an old notification is needed.

Just like to pint out that unless I am mistaken all photo apps go in your photo hub so the example for having folders seems kind of moot. Also closing apps is needed for the reasons mentioned I hate hitting the damn back but to get to what I want or clear apps plus it is already done with internet tabs so why not apps. Folders I can take or leave and full back up is a nice insurance policy especially with how much we have on our phones. Even without these though it's exciting and can't wait to see the new hardware.

MS couldy simply have all notifications go to Me tile in addtion to the lockscreen/live tiles, but that would create some redundancy and perhaps more battery usage?
My #1 is full back-up restore, that is the most critical for me to be able to switch phones, buy new upgrade, or replace a lost or defective device and have everything installed in one easy step like iPhones. 
 
 
 

I'm glad to see folders didn't make the top three.  I was surprised backup wasn't two though.  I don't see a lot of end users utilizing the close app function unless it was a rogue app that was hung....but I've never encountered that on WP7.

I forgot to mention it earlier. I want a battery % meter beside (or instead of) the inaccurate battery icon. if i want to know battery percent I Currently have a three step process. I want glance and go!

If they do create a notification center, make it optional, and let the user turn off every type of notification. I don't want a list full of junk and advertisements like I had on Android where I had to delete apps just because they spammed the notification bar. There might be some lost functionality, but the lack of a notification center is one of the reasons why WP doesn't appear to constantly harass the user and clutter the UI. 

Agreed. This is already a concern I have with some of the new lock screen functionality. Apps can set a background image? Yeah... it's called an advertisement, and it would go over as well as a health care spending bill.

Those top 3 are nice, and of them all, the full backup is most important to me.  But nearly the same importance would be adding Zune Social, and liking/posting what you're listening to to Twitter/FB from within the built-in Zune App, like the Zune HD FB app used to do.  That would obviate the need for other music sharing apps that we see posting all over FB, and would let us see what friends are listening to, and link us back to the Zune Marketplace to drive more revenue to MS.  This would include send-to so that I can send a link to the Marketplace for a song/album/artist or custom playlist I made for someone, either through FB or otherwise so they can listen to music I recommend.  If it goes through FB, they can like and comment on it.
A Zune pivot for all my contacts like the Zune Contacts would be a great way to share music, and possibly TV/Movies I watch, with friends.
 
Better FB integration: check in with friends, photos; view messages, delete comments/posts without opening FB, like pictures and individual comments without opening FB, edit FB comments without opening FB
 
Smart-keyboard typing when dialing so that I can start dialing 533 to see my contacts with 533 in their phone numbers and those whose names start with j, k, or l, then d, e, or f, etc.  Smart-dialing I think, which was a feature on Windows Mobile.  It makes sense.
Find on Page in IE needs to be brought back.
TellMe that matches and exceeds Siri's abilities.
 
Those 5 features are as important if not more important than a notification center.

I totally agree on better Social Network features and Smart Dialing. Additional TellMe features... I'd argue against making it more Siri like, since having a relationship with my phone seems really disturbing. I want functional and useful, but not gimmicky.

Better Social Integration, I think, is practically the number one issue and is one of the things that people love about their windows phone. I too hate having to use the immensely slow facebook app to do simple things like tag friends and delete posts.

Sorry, Dan, but I'm going to have to call out your title for this article. That's a bit of a sensationalism. I don't gather from any of the data collected that any WP users desperately want a notification center. At best, you could say over one in five WP users want a notification center, but I wouldn't even go that far, as I'm not sure you can gather that from relatively so few users.

With the improvemnts coming to Live Tiles I really think it will change a lot of peoples mind about a Notification Center. I still personally can do without it and will reserve judgement when I have a hot new WP8 Lumia in my hands.

I totally agree on the notifcation center and full backups, but what bugs me is the close apps request. It's not as fluid, I suppose as tapping an X, but you open the app and press the Back button to exit... works just fine as-is. As power users, we're the only ones who care about this sort of thing.

Thats what you get when you make people choose without leaving an option saying "neither is a must for me tbh" which I would have selected. Stupid poll, worse interpretation. Come on people.

Those who are asking for device back-up are probably largely limited to those who've had to reinstall for some reason. I imagine if the majority of users would have had to do a reinstall, then device back-up would be the more prominent requested feature. I love this OS but what's currently necessary to restore your phone, especially if you fully take advantage of the OS, is atrocious. And any apps that you've paid for but are no longer on the marketplace will be lost forever. Microsoft should be ashamed that they have not addressed this. Especially if they want users to stick around.

I really want the keyboard sound to be louder like in the good old days before the 7.5 update! And i wish the live tile like me tiles updates instantly as i get notification...

I don't need either of the top 2. I sure hope if there is a notifications center that it can be turned off. One of my biggest dislikes with Android is having to go to 2 different places to dismiss notifications. I'm not sure how necessary it will be to close programs in WP8 it could be a nice adder I wouldn't put it in the top 2.

Close apps...maybe, full backup is a must! Notification Center will never make sense to me on Windows Phone. Between homescreen notifications, live tiles, and toast reminders I can't see the need for it. I can't believe so many people voted for it unless you just don't want your iphone and Android friends to say they have something you don't. Those guys need a notification center because they don't have what WP users have. They should be trying to copy WP not the other way around.

I like to think the new smaller tiles are the metro equivalent to folders.
 
Universal search is a very handy feature on iOS and Android.  Especially if you're using someone else's phone and you just can't find something.
 

I don't think this kind of poll is a foolproof survey? 
Why, because one participant can vote more than1 times. I myself voted more than 1 times and each time, selected different items. 
So, an accurate poll would allow a user to vote only once, which is not the case here, which can skew the results dramatically. 
Hope, WPcentral introduces a better polling method and take the lead in tech blogs. 

It IP logged and used a cookie to block that type of thing. An IP analysis reveals that there were very few if any "repeat' voters. Plus we really hope people have more to do in life than crack an online poll.

Folders, if implemented, should take you to another start screen with live tiles, not a list. I'm also surprised back up scored so low.

how about they dont cos look at how that turns out for android users who don't know what they are doing and end up side loading all kinds of malware......

Windows Phone has the fundamentals right.
 
It looks good, its very fast, its responsive and innovative, it is stable and soon to be secure too.
But it lacks the little things and the polish that it takes to mature. Some of it is Microsoft's ignorance to admit (Notificationcenter) and some of it, they don't seem to understand.
Hopefully at some point they will consider adding "dumb phone" features like call protocol or smart dialer...
 
also searching calendar, texts, documents etc...is essential. The fact that its not available cannot be excused. Multitasking still sucks too..apps restart instead of resuming when you click on the icon, many apps still don't support fast app switching, etc.
 
The UI of IE10 is a mess too...the settings page could also need an overhaul...top toggles should be on top (wifi, airplane etc.), there should be tiles for setting categories (phone, apps, security, connections, etc.)
 
and many other stuff. They probably don't matter to the average joe but they do matter to tech journalists and bloggers...and if they aren't satisfied they will influent people not to buy it. If WP was very successful and Microsoft could afford to be ignorant that would be a different story but when you have 2% market share, you better be open minded because the product is getting rejected at the moment. I have 4 Lumia devices, an HTC Titan and an HTC HD7. I love every single one of them. But some stuff were expected to be ironed out in WP8 and they aren't. And there has been absolutely nothing groundbreaking so far. Those who loved WP as it was will love it even more. Those who didn't like it, still won't care.

"also searching calendar, texts, documents etc...is essential. The fact that its not available cannot be excused."
 
So true, I cannot believe they do not have this included and am praying it is included in WP8 along with smart dialer, notification center and better multi tasking.
 
MSFT be warned, you could have a riot on your hands unless some of these more common matured features are included, we have been through the early dev stage of WP since 2010 when I bought my samsung focus, now it is time to show the big boys how we roll!!!

Not sure why there is an argument over whether or not a notification center is needed. The most rational answer for both sides should be yes. After that, allow for those who don't want it to disable it and stick with Live Tile notifications and for those who do to use it. Pretty much what should happen with any feature, IMO.

I do agree with that logic. Extra features are great but they may not be for everyone and MS has been pretty good about letting people disable certain functions and this should be no different.

What is that unofficial backup tool shown in this article? If it really works, I'd like to use it to backup my game data so I can hard reset my phone to use my new Outlook account.

I can live without notification center. I'm not sure how many social apps people has to have. Its hard to live without Full Flash though! Millions of Websites still require Flash. Its not going away anytime soon. This is where I struggle coming December, Android vs WP8. Push comes to shove, keep my wp7.5 but Upgrade to GS3 or One x. Got Flash plus all the other nitpicky features people bugging for on wp8.

I don't understand many of you that don't want a Notification Center.
Live tile and lockscreen notification can't make the same work!
For example the London 2012 app: have notification with the detailed medals your favourite team won. No Live Tile. And if you press the notification only open the app, it doesn't open the relative sport. And the notification disappear in few second and I cannot read everythings on it because it's too long! And so?
I really hope Microsoft implement a notification center so I can read what notification should do: notificate!!!! If you don't want it don't use it.

While having an easy way to close background apps could be useful, it's not a necessity by some people's reasoning. You all do realize that you control which apps run in the background (at least for those apps that are compatible)? If you don't want, let's say, WPCentral running in the background and knocking Mehdoh off the list, simply close out the app when your done. Apps can be closed after use. You only put an app in background process when you hit the Window button.

I have no problems with a notification center, as long as the option to turn it on/off is provided. I don't find it necessary for the most part, but it seems like a simple feature that would keep some users happy..

Backup? What can I say? Easy! Necessity! I do see some limitations for backup with the different manufacturers and models of phones, but we definitely need something a hell of a lot better than we have currently. Could easily be worked out with perhaps some minor limits.

The appeal of notification center is a centralized place to keep all the lost toast notifications, because they stay for only a short amount of time and if your not staring at your phone screen or have it easily accessible you miss it. So a simple solution that has been mentioned before is just introduce a notification option for apps to integrate in the Me tile and store the missed toast notifications in the existing list. No gesture, no chrome, no huge change just more integration which is already huge in WP...plus can be added with WP7.8 ;-)

I agree with schlubadub. I'd rather have a pin or lock method to keep apps i choose open than a close option.
Also I really don't like the idea of a notification center. I like how widows phone unifies app launching, widget data, and notifications. Adding extra elements just seems unecessary. Personally I really don't find I miss having a notification center and the new lockscreen options address what issues I did have.

"Universal Search seems like one of those features that users could take advantage of nearly everyday. Indeed we’ve seen an early shot of what looked to be a universal search option back in 2011. Will that make it into Windows Phone 8 in the end? We’re not sure but we would certainly like to see it at some point"
 
To me this issue should have been in the top 3 not just top 5. Searching for more than just bing items should be a critical component of a hand held device especially with expanding storage abilities. I want to be able to search contacts (not just by name), music, pictures podcasts and whatever else I might have stored on my device. If I am using it for business I would want to be able to search documents on the device too.
 
I hope this is included in WP8, to me it would make a lot of sense.

Two things. I don't know if someone already wrote them, there are too many comments to read them all :P
First: How did you do the analysis? Did 22% of the people vote for the NC or were 22% of the votes for the NC? I think thats a huge difference because everybody had 3 votes but didn't need to use all of them. I did just vote for 1 point. But if everybody would have used all 3 votes and 100% of the people would for the Notification Center it would still only get 33,33%.
Second: To be honest, I didn't really get the universal search thing. Maybe I did not read that correctly or I did not read the comments to know what you meant with that. If Universal Search means that if you press the search button when you are in the marketplace it should search the marketplace instead of bing you are damn right. Everbody should have voted for that one. Its just unintuitive that its not working like that and everybody around me made that mistake when he/she got his WP. But I thought, you guys in the US already got that function.

As far as I know there's no IP issues surrounding swiping the app up off screen to close it. RIM does it with the Playbook OS and as far as I'm aware, they never licensed it from Palm/HP.

Also im worried about full back up also. With game data that you already finished and stuff. It makes me jumpy about upgrading.

The lack of consolidated notifications is an example of how Microsoft is detracting from their mantra of ease of use just for the sake of being different.

There is nothing more intuitive than having one place to go for all of your notifications on a system. It's the ultimate example of usability. Saying that WP is "above" that is simply stupid.

Why do people not want notification center? If you dont want to use it dont use it if you do then use it!

But, no folders. They are not very smooth metro/fast and easy I think they should have 'groups' with the new start screen you have a 'group' of apps (small size) and when you tap on that 'group' it will expand all of the apps to medium size and under the group location and will show that information and the names. you can label your 'group' whatever you want. if you tap the groups original location of the compressed form it will compress the apps in it back to small tiles and the apps will still have all of the notifications that they would have if they were just plain small sized tiles.

It would be nice if we could have a notification screen....
Like have a notification screen to the left, tiles in the center and apps to the right
 
and done =)
maybe some quick settings in the notification screen would be nice (like a button for turning wifi on and off)

   Basically nobody gives a sh*t about the fugly black and white colours of the background. Other than that, I agree with the closing apps and full system backup. The notification center seems useless to me.

The reason I'm staying on Window phone with too many missing stuff is because I like Nokia phones.
 
But if they are not bringing folder and notifications to windows 8 then I'm jumping back to android.
 
Swipe left for notifications (as below) would be an awesome feature and it would look like Meego :)
 
Also lets not forget that Nokia can change theUI, so Nokia might come up with it!

 

i don't care anything about a notification center.  I would like the Me tile to be accurate when it tells me how many new items I have to look at.  
 
Otherwise, folders would be nice.  I would like my game progress saved in case I upgrade to a new phone or have to replace one.  My number one request is to be able to take screenshots.  Why wasn't that included in the poll?

I really want a full backup option or at least the ability to store app/game save data to SkyDrive. Phone are still based on fallible technology so at some point you will lose all your data or you may want to switch to another device.
Notification centre is a neat idea and I like having it in the Me section so it doesn't add more to the home screen than needed.
Locking an app in memory should definitely be preferred over the ability to close apps, it would make I far more efficient, especially with more tasks allowed to be saved in the background.

How about instead of a notification center MS makes some sort of swipe to lock functionality from the home screen so you can view your notifications on the lock screen without hitting the sleep/power button...
I think that would be a fair compromise, especially if that can be shut off, I'd be very happy.
Having a separate notification center really just wouldn't make sense because it wouldn't fit the Metro (or Win8) mantra of uncluttered I think.

Congratulations to WPCentral for the amazing and significant data results!
Interesting to see what consumers would want, and which deserve more attention apparantly.
I am ambivilant on the notification center. I don't mind the tile notifications, but what I do notice is that I sometimes wonder which toast notifications I mis. Granted that the goal of the toast notification is for small data with a small shelf life of relevance, but sometimes I do want to remind myself which notifications passed by from whom. Once the toast has disappeared its gone, no way to find with certainty who or what passed by. A basic list would be nice then.
In terms of enduserfriendliness I understand the argument for the "close" function. It would save a lot of backspacing in the multitaskcenter.
I totally agree with the backup. Since I'm on windows phone I missed my windows (selective) sync and backup center a lot on my windows mobile. It was one of my complaints of the windows phone ecosystem from the start. Now that microsoft is clumsily dumping Zune and zune syncing support, this isn't a proper consumer support I've come to expect.I think it would have saved microsoft expensive investments in new systems if they just updated zune, much like what they do with the Live Essentials.
I expected universal search to be higher in the rankings due to what MS has shown with search on windows 8.
I do not know what to think of folders. Windows Phone is not Android comes to mind.
Will these results be sent to Microsoft?

I think the People is one of top most important things with windows phone and must be highly updated with these three features...
1. The ability to tag friends in your posts and in comments
2. The ability to edit edit your wall including deleting your own posts, editing posts, deleting friends posts and their comments on posts.
3. The ability to like individual comments.

To me, not being able to cloes apps is not usually an issue but when it comes to internet explorer, if I'm on a website and I go several pages into it, in order to get out of the internet and officially close it, you need to go all the way back to the first page. What if I wanted the page I was on to be right there when I reopened IE. That to me is where the fix needs to be addressed.

What I would really like is integration of wp8 notifications and some other options in windows 8. So that when my phone is connected to my pc via cable, home wifi or bluetooth, I could get notifications about new text messages, whatsapp, games etc. on my pc and read them. Another one of my annoyances is that eventhough my pc and phone are connected, both will give auditive notifications of incoming mail, skype, live messenger etc. Another example of the improved integration would be enabeling you to turn on/off tethering from within the windows 8 connectionscenter.
 
If this implementation would be too powerconsuming for the phone or too complicated for users to have to connect their phones, or that it only works when connected to your homes wifi etc. It could be implemented that this behaviour happens when someone is actively using the same main windows live id on a PC, this could give some issues when you lent out your phone, so you should either enable people to log onto windows phones the same way as to windows 8 using their own windows live ID, or skip my auditive notifications idea.
 
W8 is all about giving you a concistend experience on all your devices, so why not start by keeping all your notifications and messages in sync on all your devices.

It seems to me Microsoft knew already this would pretty much be the list.
 
They just don't get that people want to use their phones in a specific way which is not exactly how Microsoft envisions this to be. Closing apps, universal search or a notification center...it doesn't take a genius to figure out what people want.
 
After all the failure with WP7 one would think they have learned a lesson or two. Guess not. They probably need to fire a few people that have been at the helm all the time because they don't seem interested in admiting mistakes and learning from them.
 
Rebooting the OS after having just rebooted it is another sign of desperation. Also while WP8 looks like a much larger update than Mango under the hood, from a consumer perspective it feels like Mango offered more consumer features but maybe thats just me.
Changing the brand of zune etc. can't get me really excited. If you had a Lumia device and were already using Nokia maps and Nokia drive, there really isn't much of new impressive visible features. Data sense or Lense are good additions, the rest rather little evolutionary stuff.
Link window from homescreen is still being wasted, settings is still a mess...it has no polish whatsoever. Every aspect of this OS sucks at a thing or two. The fundamentals are right now. Its fast and stable. I would hope for a change they stop adding gimmicks and polish the OS from the ground up.
 
The only thing WP fans can enjoy is that there is always hope the next update brings desperately needed features.

Really for a notification center it could be a optional pinned tile named "History" like the me tile it updates the history of missed stuff. If it's that important to people.