From the Forums: Windows Phone 7.8, BlackBerry 10 announcement and Microsoft

Welcome to another From the Forums! This week has been a busy one with the last handful of days featuring the launch of BlackBerry 10, as well as reports that Windows Phone 7.8 is officially rolling out to consumers. It's been an eventful day today with a few articles comparing the Z10 from BlackBerry against Windows Phone and the Lumia 920 in particular, along with our usual news coverage.

But what's being discussed on the Windows Phone community forum?

Windows Phone 7.8 is a hot topic, and has been since it was revealed by Microsoft to be heading to those who still own Windows Phone 7 handsets. With the rollout kicking off, forum member konaitor has created a thread to see who has received the notification and upgraded their hardware. Sporting new tiles and a number of other features, the update is set to refresh the life of older Windows Phones.

So have you received the update? Enjoying the new features in 7.8? Be sure to head on over to the "Check-in for 7.8 Update Through Zune, Have you gotten yours yet?" thread and notify the fellow WPCentralites of your experience.

BlackBerry launches the Z10, thoughts?

As mentioned above, BlackBerry has launched the Z10 smartphone to rejuvenate the brand and prevent the company from continuing in its down spiral. But what does everyone think about the two devices that have been announced? The Z10 and Q10 are on offer and have been discussed in the community forum to some extent.

This is what community member joeynox had to say about BlackBerry 10:

"Today is dday. BB10 is going to be shown off and the tech world is going to jump on it. There's so much buzz around this compared to the launch of wp8. Plus bb10 will have all the apps that are missing from wp8. Today can be a very bad day for wp8 and MS if Rims new os and phone is the next god phone."

It's a fair point. There's always the possibility that BlackBerry could regain its share of the market, but then there's the fact that it has been slipping relatively quickly for a while now. Is there enough in BlackBerry 10 to sway consumers and save the platform? What are your thoughts on BlackBerry's chances? Add your thoughts in the "Today is DDay or BB10 day" thread.

Microsoft can learn much from BlackBerry already?

Microsoft has caused concern for many of its fans and followers - including us here at Windows Phone Central HQ. We'd all like to see "more" from the company when it comes to Windows Phone. The BlackBerry launch could teach the company a thing or two about just how lightly it's backing Windows Phone, or is Microsoft pouring in the required amount of funding and team effort already?

Forum member bilzkh doesn't think so:

"Now look at WP8. At its heart it is a superb OS with the social network integration, lenses integration, augmented reality apps, NFC and Wallet, etc. Then why, why in the name of all that is rational and sensible is MS not pushing each of these elements to the end-user in meaningful ways? Or rather, simply put, why isn't MS putting in the money and commitment behind such an effort?Why is it that we have to put up with a certain business division 'evaluating' Xbox's value on Windows Phone? Someone at the top needs to put Windows Phone front and center as a key pillar of Microsoft's future in an increasingly 'mobile computing' world, but clearly that isn't happening."

Does this ring any bells with anything you've considered, or do you believe Microsoft is getting most things right so far? Sound your opinion in the "What Microsoft should learn from BlackBerry" 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.

  • As a Microsoft fan, I've always found their biggest problem is their inability to realize when they HAVE a problem.
  • Agreed...they have alot of potential both with windows 8 and windows phone 8 but they don't take advantage of it all because of that
  • Right now Microsoft cares more about their new XBox 720 coming out than WP8 since at least in the gaming world, Microsoft has more than 3% of share
  • I agree the wp8 is out and so once the Xbox is on its way they can work on the phone more. Xbox is one of their major products so its important to retain that market share and grow on it. I'm betting that the integration with 720 and the windows phone will be a huge leap forward....but that's just a wishful guess. Microsoft just needs to get more coordinated within its departments.
  • A company the size of MS should be able to focus on many projects at the same time and even coordinate the releases of new things in parallel like they did with WP8 and Win 8.  The whole time this was going on their Office division was working on Office 2013 & 360.  The Windows Phone 8 OS is as good or better than the competition depending upon which features you care about, their biggest challenge is winning over people's minds.  Apple is a huge greedy company that has the LARGEST profit margin on its phones, but that is not how they are viewed.  MicroSoft needs to re-image itself and its products to win over hearts and minds.  The new surface and Windows 8 commercials are a step in the right direction but it will take a sustained effort to break the hold of the Apple cult.
  • Lets have some fun. How about deep inside Microsoft and Nokia there was an agreement. Microsoft agrees to fund and then back off, giving the OS to Nokia. Nokia agrees to keep it and pay royalties and Microsoft moves into what they want to be, a services only. The only thing that throws my silly story amiss is they made the surface and possible surface phone. But, its fun to dream.. I'd love for Nokia to stay by itself and just take it. Cheers!!
  • I'm starting to think the same way. MS just doesn't seem to want to fully commit to WP. Nokia seems fully behind it.
  • I have often thought of this as well. Nokia just seems to be giving much more effort toward the OS. I don't know if I would want them too fully put Windows Phone in Nokias hands, but a deeper collaboration between the companies with much of it being handled by Nokia.
  • WP8 is really in danger of being pushed aside because BB is quite strong on the enterprise side.  The dual profile is an awesome feature.  The traditional strong suit of messaging functions are still there.  As for my WP8, I can't say MS is stroing at all in the enterprise.  Heck my Lumia 920, unlike my HD7, still can't connect to my coporate network using WiFi because there is a problem in the WPA2-Enterprise protocol that MS never seemed to know or fix.  So unless MS suddenly are more aware of the threat, they will probably proceed as normal until it's too late. 
  • I think that Blackberry has lost their Enterprise strengths now that they have abandoned their old BES email solution and switched to ActiveSync only. Blackberry 10 isn't even compatible with the old Java based BES 5 servers and BES 10 is essentially just an extension of their mobile fleet management tool Blackberry Mobile Fusion, but even that isn't compatible with legacy Blackberry 7 devices or older.
  • From an Enterprise perspective, that was the only way they could survive. No one wants a proprietary hardware device to manage in their datacenter while Exchange can do everything the BES could do. Blackberry has a long way to go to get back into the enterprise though. On the MS side, System Center and Exchange natively manage Windows devices, to get full device management for other platforms requires hosted solutions like Intune or 3rd party hw/sw devices. If I were the CTO, its a no-brainer for me...WP is easier to lock down, secure and manage over all other platforms, that means apple and android too. Partner a WP with Windows 8's multiple form factors and BYOD would be a non-entity in my org. I do like the left swipe gestures though, that is slick...wouldn't mind if WP introduced that, rather than the "hold down the back button" style we have now.
  • I'm a WP fan, have been using it since WP7 launch day, but even I can acknowledge that BES has features that ActiveSync doesn't even come close to. Also why couldn't BES 10 support both ActiveSync & the legacy BES system? WP doesn't even have VPN support yet, its move to the enterprise is still very half baked.
  • who needs VPN on a phone?  i find that to be a bit of stretch.  If companies deploy SharePoint, they can have access to all the corporate assets they need, on a phone...
  • let me clear a few things up for you. When you are connected to BES 10 you have all the services that you had on bes 5 in cluding push email. The introduction of active sync gives the customer the option to use the one they prefer.  BlackBerry mobile fusion is now renamed to BES 10. For now two servers are required on to run BBOS 7 and older phones and one to run BB10 phone but can be managed from the same computer console. In May bes 10 will be the one stop for all mdm solutions as it will manage BB10, BBOS, Android, Apple and Wp8.
    Big Dooze- I don't understand why you like having you wp8 locked down by you companies IT department but to each their own. I guess you like smartphone that are locked down to the functionality of dumb phones. Just so you know with BlackBerry Balance BB10 will be the easiest to lock down.  I like being able to use what I pay for that's I like the BB10. My IT department can't touch my personal data so I'm free to use my phone as I please and I never have to worry about my information being erased when I leave an employer.
  • Why do I want to lock down your personal phone on my corp network....really?
  • Windows Phone is a wonderful OS & genius idea. But after using wp for almost a year, I'm wondering, do MS use their own WP for everyday uses as their cellular Phone? If they do, they'll understand the reliability & user experience should be updated.
    As a phone the basic modern phone functionality experience must be put first. The messaging notification, reliability & integration should be improved.
    And as the application software is growing and i installed many software, it need something like grouping or hub maybe?
  • I'm realy pissed off with Nokia and Microsoft. They release the 7.8 update, but this update does not fix the lock screen bug (it freezes sometimes and I missed important calls becouse of this bug) and the earplug controls bug when the screen os off, which does ONLY work only when the screen is on.
    Frack You, Nokia! Frack you, Microsoft®!
  • BB10 looks good when Att get it ima have to snag it. See which one becomes my primary device 920 or BB10
  • Alright... so now it's called a "traditional app grid" as opposed that same weak, boring ho-hum, old-ass, used since WM2003, unimaginative garbage that the rest of them use?
    OK, got'cha. And this thing being compatible with android apps? Give me a break, did they come into this knowing that developers would ignore it or what?
    It's a damn shame people will go even slightly ape-shit over that "notification hub" (hub... really?) just looking at it in video and pictures it looks MESSY and cluttered. To all of you who are suddenly BB apologists who feel the need to praise them for what looks like lack luster shit, while also downing MS and calling them "dead", I BEG you to go end yourself. You are what's wrong with this whole thing.  
  • So looking through a few of the comments.  The race starts now between BB10 and WP8?  Both seem to have equal weaknesses and pretty equal strengths.  (Not counting games)
  • Moved from iOS to WP8 and used WP7 briefly before getting the 920. WP8 just isn't a big enough jump. It seems as if Microsoft is falling into the same bad habit as they did with Windows Mobile, changing stuff behind the scenes that nobody cares about (kernels) and then don't very little to the front end. Blackberry 10 will do so much better IMHO. Hardware and software working together in harmony. I think Nokia are the only ones contributing anything useful to Windows phone. Without them it would have died by now.
  • Nice. Seems fluid, flexible and responsive. I love what they did with notification.  I wonder how they will price out their apps. On my HP Touchpad, the apps were pretty pricey with the better apps coming in about 4.99.  But all in all, it looks good. Could it pry my fingers from my Lumia 920? Not today. At least, not unless the next WP update doesn't support notification. Also, I need to see how the BlackBerry performs in real time and if it will be supported on the BES. But it looks pretty good.