The Windows Phone UK team held an exciting event in Camden last night. The Into Live Event saw live performances from local bands, and even the popular Noisettes. As well as the music, a steady flow of food and alcohol were on the table with each attendee receiving two free drink tokens (much like the HTC launch event for the TITAN and Radar). I went along with Robert Brand from Glance and Go Radio and also managed to meet up with Tom Warren from The Verge. So what was down at Proud Camden?
Music was the major part of the night, which was backed by Windows Phone promotion material. If we were to sum up the night with regards to marketing the platform to the young audience, it appeared to be successful. The venue packs a retro style, which suited the number of Microsoft booths that were set up in what appeared to be a transformed stable. We had guys from Skype, Xbox, Bing and of course Windows Phone. All teams were ready to mingle with the crowd, give away prizes and show off what the software company has to offer.
The Skype team had a number of devices set up with a conference call in action. Event attendees could talk to one another from the main room to a number of locations around the venue. We popped by to receive a Skype tattoo and managed to abstract some information detailing future updates of the app for Windows Phone. While many have felt annoyed by the lack of multitasking or notifications for Skype on Windows Phone, we were told the team is working hard at bringing such functionality to the platform.
We've continuously covered how the Skype app was "rushed" to the market, due to the high demand and amount of call outs from the community, but the app that we've currently got live on the Marketplace isn't that bad of a solution. It works, which is the main thing. But with Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 just around the corner, we're likely to see improvements applied to Skype before we see any potential integration. As well as the implementation of background notifications, we're also hoping to see optimisation for Tango devices (those with less than 512MB RAM).
As well as the Skype team, we had some guys down to talk Xbox. With a Kinect and console set up in the booth, the team demonstrated integration that's featured in Windows Phone. The array of Xbox Live games, avatar customisation and multiplayer compatibility were demonstrated. Kinectimals was the title that was run through with QR codes used for transfer of pets between the mobile and large screen. If the demonstration and information available wasn't enough, there was a challenge to see who could accumulate the most points in Fruit Ninja for a prize.
If you're into searching the web, then the Bing team present for discussion about the services offered by Microsoft on both the web and Windows Phone. From translation, with the recently updated Translate app, to maps, the folk at the Into event were ready to talk about everything Bing related. Should you have had any feedback or suggestions for future functionality, you were able to make such requests. Those who had some ideas to pass on were able to win some surprises with a @BingUK tweet.
The Windows Phone UK team were at hand to carry out the Dare to Live challenge with those who own competitor handsets. Should you win you pocketed £20, there and then. But should you lose you'll be set to carry out a daring activity that will push yourself to the limits, just as we've seen in the Dare to Live campaign that has toured the UK thus far. It was good to see the team taking advantage of the great turn out to get some challenges in.
Since myself and Rob went to the event as one, the evening was full of drink, pub food and discussion about the platform. We got to meet up with the guys from 33 Digital, the agency behind much of Windows Phone UK's marketing activity, as well as David Hamilton of the Pepper app. It was a superb evening for all who attended and there was plenty "Windows Phone" material around. We'll look forward to future events where hopefully our readers will be heading along.
Check out more photos from the evening below.