WP7 missing features around the world

It's already been noted and made aware of, that Microsoft has poorly established their Windows Phone 7 and Zune (opens in new tab) services around the world (lucky for some, eh America?). To easily display how limited some countries are with support of Microsoft's mobile platform-based services, Andrew Birch has produced a matrix displaying what is available where.

It's actually fairly disturbing once you have a good read through the table (click the image to enlarge it). The US has complete access to all features offered, which is understandable being the land of Microsoft. UK and France are next up more access than the compared list. However, podcasts and TV is presented to be solely available to the American user base (strange when podcasts are freely available). Let us not even dare to analyze poor Canada.

This seems pretty confusing for many, sure the platform is still new and coming together nicely, plus some advancements in international monopoly may occur around the time of the proposed software update time of arrival, but I can't help thinking "why release a system that many can't use properly?". To prevent more negativity presenting itself in the harshest way, Microsoft really needs to combat their Zune, WP7 and Xbox Live (opens in new tab) deployment across the globe.

But what am I saying? Competitors have this problem, and many companies in other markets experience the same barrier. It will take time for services and features to open up. It would make sense if Microsoft were waiting for demand to reach minimal levels before taking the leap, but how would the demand rise if services aren't readily available for hardware to take advantage of?

As we mentioned in a previous article, announcing the January Microsoft WP7 survey, fill in the feedback form with what you'd like to see for Christmas. Perhaps Zune coverage in your country?

Source: Andrew Tech Help via: Windows Phone Secrets

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds was formerly a 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 on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • As much as it sucks missing out on features in Canada I do know that its not all Microsoft's fault. The CRTC still won't allow the zune pass in canada. That's why zunes were pulled from stores when the zune pass was launched. I've heard they are still working on it and as soon as the CRTC caves Canada will have more features. Fingers crossed
  • I agree... A lot of people don't understand its not Microsoft fault country laws and regulations are different all over the world. What we see in the US as a simple just add the feature / turn it on is not the case for other countries. Some countries regulate the type of music and access to music that is allowed. Here in the US buying explicit music and content is no big deal, but not that easy in other places.
  • Exactly, it's about time people figured out that MS is held back by licensing and regulation from country to country.
  • I live in Hong Kong and have no problem using all the music features simply by using a US postal address on my zune.net profile. I think I may have even used Microsoft's own HQ address!Either way I have a zune pass linked to my credit card and it works no problems. The only feature i CANT seem to get to work is movie downloads or rentals, which I find thoroughly bizarre as I can easily download xbox games using my microsoft points.strange
  • hmm interest, try using a proxy on the computer / router with a US IP. I know features like Netflix check for US IPs before streaming movies so I'm betting Zune is doing the same thing for Movies download.
  • Being in Canada and buying the first few Zune MP3 players and really liking the interface and other things about them, it's really disappointing not having a content service to support it.    In my opinion it was sad to see the Zune come to Canada with it's half baked pathetic media offerings, and get it's ass kicked back to the US. This was I believe 4 years ago, and they still haven't worked anything out as far as media content deals! (as far as music is concerned) That's simply unacceptable in today's iTunes dominated market. I guess it may be hard to compete with iTunes and their well established media store with apps, TV shows, movies and music readily available to rent and purchase, since they've been in Canada for a longer time and have their content deals worked out.       I also understand that there's some setbacks due to the CRTC, but I fail to see why we can't even download free Podcasts! An all you can eat music subscription maybe I can understand not being allowed (even though there's similar music subscription services in Canada) but not even being able to download free Podcasts or pay for music, is lame and pathetic.    I know there's a way to get Zune Podcasts with a US address and setting your comp to the US region, and you can purchase US Microsoft points on eBay to buy music and video, and that you couldn't even buy apps on the Android or Palm Marketplace, let alone music and video, when they were first introduced in Canada, but this is Microsoft! If Apple can do it so can Microsoft and if they can't get it together, it's going to be a very hard battle to win over Apple and iPhone users if they at all care about content.    Simply being an alternative choice is not good enough in my opinion, to compete.Maybe it's simply not that big of a deal for some.    I'm sure it affects the choice of some other consumers as well as myself who are sitting on the fence waiting for a compelling reason to abandon their iTunes ecosystem in favor of the great OS in Windows Phone 7 and great hardware from phone manufactures, but there hasn't even been a comparable media ecosystem, thus no reason to do so. 
  • What about the little things that are missing.If you use Bing with Australia as your region, the local tab is missing.If you use Bing with US, you get the local tab (which does show content for Australia), but measures distance in miles not km.Also there is no voice search button available.I love the phone, but wish the services would be consistent.