From the Forums: BlackBerry conversions and doubts about Windows Phone 8

It's that time of the week (or should we say weekend?) where we bring you the latest discussions from the Windows Phone Central forums. Should you find yourself missing out on the hottest threads in our community, be sure to read on so you're up-to-date and can join in.

Forum user cp2_4eva has created a thread to ask the community if they have doubts about Windows Phone 8. The post goes into detail about how the platform is still not as functional as the likes of Android, the iPhone and BlackBerry.

"Here we are at WP 7.5....and we still don't have fully functional devices. When I say fully functional, I mean by comparison to iPhones, Android, and even Blackberry and Symbian. There are still a number of things those other phone can do what we can't. It's not a matter of how it's done, but what can be done."

Microsoft has Windows 8 and Apollo on the horizon, but we've always asked our readers if it's enough to pull Microsoft's mobile division up to speed with competitors. While its believed that some features are yet to be unveiled, do you have doubts about its release? It's both exciting and terrifying waiting to find out whether or not Microsoft has successfully packed what consumers require into the package.

Be sure to head on over to the "Anyone having doubts about the WP8?" thread to voice your opinion.

More migrating BlackBerry fans

I'mHAL-9000 created a thread posting first thoughts on switching from RIM to a shiny new Lumia 900. So what was it like moving from the BlackBerry nation?

"Have to say that I never thought I would own a WM7 device...well here I am with my new lumia 900. amazing...Walked away from my BB 9930 and will not look back."

Sounds familiar to other customer reviews / stories that we've read on retailer websites. The BlackBerry hardware is praised, but the delay of RIM's version 10 of its mobile operating system has caused issues for die-hard followers. If you have any experience switching from BlackBerry, we urge you to publish such advice in the "Was a BB fan" thread and join in the discussion.

Miscellaneous: Which useful apps do you use?

The Windows Phone Marketplace now boasts over 100,000 apps for consumers to download, but which ones of that figure are actually considered useful? This is exactly what XENOPHOS asked on our forums.

"Today morning I went through the list of apps I have downloaded for the last six-7 months. Wallpapers/soundboards/games and tweaks and mods. That's about it. All of them. Not one useful app. Not one app that I can use in some way that could perhaps bring about a minute change in my life, that could help me in the remotest way possible.Yes there are apps that I absolutely love, Flipboard, Twitter, iReader and that's about it. So, my reason to post this here is actually this question - is a bloated marketplace USP for an OS? Was I wrong in ditching my HTC HD7 for an app store that was just a bait somewhere?"

Which apps would you recommend to those who are new to the platform and require some assistance with downloading content from the Marketplace? Do you believe the ratio of functional to useless apps is positive for Windows Phone? Let us know your thoughts in the "Tons of apps... not one useful" thread.

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • I definitely our marketplace has a significantly lower volume of "fluff" than Google Play and the App Store...
  • Well so far, the is limited information on Apollo, so I am still waiting. I got tango, on my phone last month and I can nearly tell what the difference to my phone was. Again, MSFT enjoys providing very little information as possible. Why? I will never know.
  • To the new people that converted from BB to WP I'm on if you. Bought mine to educate the people at work and now more than half of them want the Titan. Apps that BB had that you want: -mehdoh: to me, best Twitter app.
    -whatsapp: I everyone I k ow is on it and not kik. Don't know why but it is quite popular alternative to bbm.
    -TuneIn: same as the BB one so all is well. Things that BB doesn't have that you may enjoy:
    -Skype: sure it doesn't run in the background but it works when you're on it flawlessly.
    -Netflix: also if you don't have Netflix check out Crackle. It is free but only works on some parts of the world. Those are my main ones. Anyone else has anything to add? I'm sure I'm forgetting some.
  • How could anyone doubt WP8? It's so stupid, WP8 is about to crush the competition
  • I hope so, but I do have my doubts.
  • When I see Instagram,Words With Friends,Anger Birds franchise then I will believe.
  • Who gives a fuçk? Those are all gimmicks, and they are coming. This was announced 2 months ago.
  • Apps are one of the big reasons why alot of people don't switch too WP,and some of the apps I speak of will be Nokia exclusive only.
  • Most smartphone users don't even care about apps. Any evidence besides talking out of your @ss?
  • No offense but I'd ask you the same question. I love my radar and I sell phones for a living. I talk up WP to everyone and then the customer will say instagram. They'll mention a banking app their bank told them about. They'll look at WP calendar (the one built in app I also often cringe at). They talk about music apps their friends have (generally illegal music downloads). This is just a handful of reasons we get returns or I have to turn them to an android. Trust me, they care more about apps than you think and this doesn't even get into the conversation of memory cards because they think they need more memory. Sigh.
  • I will never trust an android device for banking!!! And you know what I'm talking about
  • Take your own advice, dude.
    The lack of a few popular apps is a primary reason people are not switching to Windows Phone.  Sure people might not use them much, but they do want to be able to access them if they want to use them.
  • Tell that to the research group that performed this study. They're a very credible source.
  • Surveys and reports like this talk about AFTER they've gotten the phone and I agree. Have half a dozen apps myself I've only ever used once. We're talking about getting the phone into peoples hands and $ out of their pockets for WP. Whether people understand WP is more stable and easier to use has nothing to do with "does it do this random thing I've seen/heard of or want to do?" either way, wp8 should be much easier to convert people to. Whether you agree about the apps thing or not, it'll hopefully be a moot point. I'm excited.
  • I sell phones as well, and people do care about apps. I ask them what's the one thing that leads them towards a device, and most of them tell me it has to have alot of support in apps. Most returns consist of people un happy with the devices lack of mainstream apps.
  • I think its funny how people judge an OS by whether it had angry birds or not. OMG!!!! WP7 doesn't have angry birds or words with friends? It must suck. Lol if you want those fad apps stick with android or apple because you don't get what windows phones are about.
  • Not a valid argument. From the average users' standpoint, they want their phone to send email and texts, answer and make phone calls, listen to music and watch movies and play their favorite games.
    Anything else is just geeky and unrelated to them. It would be stupid for them to not use a phone that provides what they want.
  • Angry Birds? The article was about having useful apps that can effect your daily life.
  • Useful apps PayPal and Chase Bank ,that's what I'm looking forward too on WP8,and the article does say voice your doubts with WP8.
  • Don't care, neither should you.
  • Wtf!!!
    BlackBerry stay away from windows ****!
  • I believe the information leaked for WP8 in the SDK is extremely promising, and yet we still don't know enough to say with certainty what will happen with the platform. That said, this is the proverbial 3rd attempt to get this platform off the ground, and if history repeats as it typically does, then Microsoft is in for a whirlwind storm these next few years. They traditionally get it right on the third major launch, so I do believe this will be it. They're coming at us on a fairly unified front, and they've clearly done their homework on what has worked well and what hasn't with all the platforms (including their own), so I have high hopes. That, and I fully expect Apple to continue their slide into irrelevance as the competition continues to see there are far more choices and far fewer revelutionary changes for them to make without el Jobso at the helm. (Sure, I may take some criticism as a so-called fanboy, and I admit that I may be proven wrong down the road, but for now, it's my prediction.)
  • I'm curious I didn't understand your point on the "proverbial 3rd attempt".  Are you referring to WP7, WP7.5, now WP8?   If so, I'd probably reference it as the 3rd iteration.  And every year there after there should be another iteration of their OS.  I realise some people thought MS should have released the first iteration of their OS to resemble at leas the 7.5 version.  But as far as I can tell there has never been a software or hardware that has been released with the top of the line built without room for improvement.  The first iOS is certainly not the same as iOS4.  Every company only provide so much in able to built on it later to show progress.  I look for WP8 to be a robust product.  My only hope is that there a devices that are well stacked for those who seem to only care about hardware then software. 
  • I think WP8 does have a chance if MSFT plays right.
  • Why would you doubt wp8? Of course they aren't going to divulge everything right at the jump. What is known is promising and I will be using my upgrade asap.
  • Same
  • Why would anyone waste their time with this rhetoric. Its like this election. A bunch of people speaking out of their ass about things people should not care about. If you love windows phone, who cares what anyone says. Windows phone is hot and most apps get lost on the other platforms.. After a while, apps become obsolete or replaced by something else or lost with in the millions of garbage apps.. I don't have words with friends, but those who did in its height of popularity now don't even play the app.. Other apps will make its way to windows phone.. This is stupid and not worth losing sleep over it.. Windows phone 8 will be hot..
  • I won't d/l Words with Friends when it's available for WP8: No Windows Phone owner should d/l it. Wordament is excellent.
  • +1
  • I will, lol. What benefits do I get by not downloading, a guaranteed spot in heaven?
  • Totally agree
  • Saying that apps doesnt matter because they become obsolete is so wrong.
    Yes apps have a short lifetime and that is also a problem after "absent apps", when the apps finally comes to WP the iPhone and Android crowd (read friends and family) have moved on to the next new thing.
    WP is hoplessly behind and they need to catch up and get simultaneous appreleases with at least Android. MS need to put in more work here.
  • I agree that the only time the app will matter is at release. If wp8 cannot get mainstream apps at LAUNCH, that will be the problem
  • Itd be interesting if MS entered the smartphone game. you know? The Windows Phone. Not all of these different ones with pros and cons. Just one windows phone, different colors. Im probably going to get some hate on this but it's my opinion.
    I really hate how staggered updates are. Yes we can blame att or any selected cellular provider but we could also blame the hardware manufacturer. Nokia is just now sitting in there Tango update for the Lumia 900 (correct me if im wrong). Tango has been ready for a while, and if it was microsofts choice/microsofts hardware I think we would be enjoying it by now
    Instead we are caught in a stall between The Manufacturer and the cell provider. And seriously? Apps that are exclusive to hardware. I'm sorry but that is bullshit. Understandable but bullshit.
  • Hardware exclusive apps are worse on android. Certain apps won't even display in the market if on a low end or older phone.
  • I believe the apps I use are very useful and are good enough. E.g. Amazon Kindle, Ebay, Bank of America, Facebook/Twitter, Fandango/Flixter, Navigon, Calculator2, Gasbuddy, Groupon, Key Ring, My Prayer, Netflix, MS Office, Skydrive, Tango/Skype, and a few more. These apps and some games are basically what I use on my phone.
  • I agree the most effective apps are the native ones and major ones that make life easier flixster/fandango BoA kik messenger whatsapp groupme wpcentral wmpoweruser zite CNN fb twitter Netflix office calculator tip calc SkyDrive and so forth games to me are nothing that's why I have a 360 and ps3 for and hardcore computing I have a laptop angry birds words and shit like that don't really affect me at all in still waiting for a gamefly app and a PayPal app then I will be happy
  • Definitely agree with you as well. I use many of the same apps. I wish there was a Wells Fargo app but their mobile website is working well for me. I love the Xbox live integration. That alone and Office made me want to get a WP phone.
  • There ae a lot of companies that don't see WP as a viable means if revenue yet. At 2% or so of the mobile market, most companies laugh, when they should be looking to push on the platform. The more people see your apps, the more people use your apps, and the more ad revenue they take in. Simple math. As for hardware on the new WP8 devices, a lot of us have been waiting for dual core processors and SD slots since the first Focus hit at&t. Not because we want to be like the androids and iPhones everyone else has, but for the extra added features of an OS that come with that processing power. Why would you want to make a new car that catches everyone's eye, then put a engine in it that is built from 3 year old tech. Dual core CPUs alone bring HD resolutions to the devices as well as better multitasking. An app written for dual core processors, if written correctly, runs more efficiently. It also means that more ram cam be installed as well as a faster bus speed. All of this adds up to a more efficient, speedier phone. Microsoft has prided itself on a device that is easy to use and can accomplish tasks with minimal use of the device itself. Faster and more powerful hardware is going to be a must for Microsoft to help gain market share.
  • Not to be shocked, I have been in stores that have the windows phones on display with discharges batteries. And if you ask to see it they say they will try to charge it . Come back days later , the batteries still uncharged phones sitting dark on the display rack.
  • I have doubt of WP8, and that is the price.
    The price will be very expensive, did you see cheap unlock WP7.5?
    I want a Pureview :D
    Imagine WP8+Pureview price, with Pureview alone unlock is at monstrous price.
  • Well not really. Nokia is gonna make the price aggressive. Maybe even on pureview. If it's $50 in co tract. Then it's a massive steal
  • I think Nokia and the carriers will price their high end devices at $199.  The $99 pricing of the Lumia was just a 'Thanks for welcoming us back in the U.S.' price structure.  They could have easily sold the Lumia 900 for $199 - perhaps they would not have sold as many, but people still would have picked up the device at that price.
    The Pureview technology will not be cheapened; and given that the offline navigation is easily valued as a $50-$100 app, expect mid and high end Nokia devices to be priced as their iOS and Android counterparts.
  • Well not really. Nokia is gonna make the price aggressive. Maybe even on pureview. If it's $50 in contract. Then it's a massive steal
  • I have a windows phone and love it, and converting my friends one by one to give it a try. But how do you change the mind set of a generation to give it a try?
  • There are like 3 threads in the forums full of people that have issues with their Me tiles. Would be maybe worth mentioning...?
  • Darn right
  • To the doubters, as a user of WP7.5 what am I really missing from a complete smartphone experience that I would get with iOS or Android? I can make calls, text words, images and videos (email them too), surf the full web, take good quality photos and HD video, have turn by turn nav, play mobile games, access my documents anywhere, access to all sorts of music and videos, a great search engine, a marketplace full of interesting and compelling apps all wrapped in stylish Cyan polycarbonate. I don't really see what I'm missing, the extras that WP8 will enhance all that but what am i missing now?
  • But but.. It doesn't have instagram, or words with friends. (sarcasm) Yes, because those two apps make a phone. I agree with you. All I wanted was to back up text, and take screenshots. So I'm good now.
  • I have very few doubts that Windows Phone 8 will be a huge success. It is pretty obvious that Microsoft is hiding quite a few features for fear of being stolen to ios or android. With regards to the apps they should start to arrive much more quickly with wp8 because of both native code support and increased visibility from developers and customers alike. When proper Xbox live games with real time multiplayer and awesome graphics start popping out that will also be a huge advantage while removable storage coupled with mass storage use will leave very few reasons to choose the iPhone 5
  • What features are missing from WP8?? I don't like overly vague blanket statements that don't at least give a couple of examples to support the statement.
  • WP lacks the top apps that iOS and Android have. That needs to change, most people with smartphones don't care about the stuff that we look for. They will just wonder if they have all the apps that other friends have downloaded.
  • Has anyone fingerout if there is a Call Blocking feature in WP8 from the leaked SDK?