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3 Reasons Windows Phone Users Should Defect to Android

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Since Microsoft announced that it would be rebooting its smartphone software and services back in 2010, users of Windows Phone operating systems have waited with baited breath for any sign that Windows would return to its position as a purveyor of a premier mobile operating system.

Not that the reset wasn’t needed, Windows Mobile had been outflanked on two fronts by both Android and iPhone. The code that developers needed to create modern versions of the applications available on Apple and Google’s platform just wasn’t there. Furthermore, the competitive hardware wasn’t there either. While phones like the HTC HD2 excited users, they weren’t on the same level as Apple’s iPhone.

Windows Phone 8 Skype

Microsoft’s debut of Windows Phone 8 last fall.

And so, Microsoft set about the reboot, redesigning the user experience around its new Metro development language, incorporating the technology and services created by all of Microsoft to make Windows Phone unique. Users were generally excited about the prospect of getting a mobile version of their favorite Xbox LIVE games and the ability to edit and create Microsoft Word documents on their devices. These features arrived, and impressed. Then the world moved on.

Now, nearly three years away from when Microsoft first announced the new platform, I’d imagine some users are struggling to understand the slow pace at which the Windows Phone equation has improved. Meanwhile life of the average Android user has improved drastically.

Google has made every effort to address the issues it users complained about, offering the option for users to purchase a member of its Nexus family of devices in order to get the “pure” Android experience. In fact, Google’s mobile operating system bests Windows Phone in a couple of ways, many of which Windows Phone users could find seriously attractive.

Better Applications

Windows Phone AppsWindows Phone boasts a huge assortment of apps, hovering somewhere around 150,000 applications. Many industry watchers would argue that the number of applications that are available to Windows Phone users doesn’t quantify the amount of quality applications that users can expect.

That’s certainly true, Windows Phone may boast 150,000 applications but many of them lack the fit and finish that users could expect had they been using the exact same app from the exact same company on iPhone. For example, PayPal is available to Windows Phone users, however it doesn’t include support for the company’s Triangle card reader. This seems to happen a lot on Windows Phone.

More Accessories

The View Covers of the Samsung Galaxy S4

The View Covers of the Samsung Galaxy S4

Outside of the impressive array of accessories offered by Nokia, Windows Phone is an absolute desert for anyone looking to extend the use of their device using things like docks, magnetic camera lenses and quality covers. Better yet, many of these devices are created by the smartphone partners like HTC and Samsung themselves.

Accessories created by the OEMs themselves tend to feature better fit and finish, and work better. Samsung’s Galaxy S4 will be backed up by a flip cover, S Health monitor and gaming controller. That’s impressive and possibly a game changer for some users Windows Phone users.

Device Maker Dedication

The Verizon HTC One with it's custom BlinkFeed home screen.

The Verizon HTC One with it’s custom BlinkFeed home screen.

While Windows Phone ships on hardware created by Nokia, HTC, Samsung, LG, Huawei make no mistake, only Nokia really attempts to create an all-encompassing ecosystem for users. Nokia users can expect exclusive applications, great hardware accessories and experiences created by the OEMs that exclusive to their device. Those exclusive software experiences, are the closest thing that Windows Phone users have to any type of OEM customization for their Windows Phone.

Meanwhile, Android users get the run of software features created to make each device unique. The Galaxy S4 includes Air View and Air Gesture. Users of the HTC One can get their hands on the company’s Blink Feed and TV remote applications.

At the end of the day, it’s about creating an ecosystem that’s conducive to creating a large, cohesive experience for users. If those who have Windows Phones don’t feel that the company is heading in that direction quickly enough, simply put, Android is very acceptable alternative.

Travis Pope is a Reporter-at-large for GottaBeMobile. He's currently enjoying a romp in the dangerous quicksand that is Microsoft's Windows 8, Windows Phone 8, and Xbox ecosystem.

12 Comments

  1. Alon

    05/29/2013 at 4:13 pm

    After “defecting” from Android and Apple to Windows 8, I was really expecting your article to reveal something I may have missed…but it didn’t. You are correct about the quality of the apps, but seeing that WP8 is only 6-7 months old, I don’t think it’s fair to judge the apps quality yet…next year November will be more justifiable. This is also true about the accessories, until there is a larger user base you can’t expect as many accessories. But I will say that the quality of the current available accessories thus fare have been great. As for the maker dedication, I would have to say you are wrong. Nokia provides the best maker support I have ever seen in the cell phone industry. Apple gives the best appearance, but everything is at a large cost and at their control. I have never seen a company on the behalf of their customers grovel to an app maker to make an app for their phone, but Nokia did that with its #2InstaWithLove app…that’s dedication.

    With all that said, I do like iOS and love Android, but for now I am going to stick with WP8. The reason is because of the WP8 Live Tiles. As a small business operator the live tiles allows me to organize my day and put everything I need regarding whatever right on the main page of my phone…that’s everything from client’s phone numbers, to project files from one of the office programs, info from the calendar, pictures, or videos, or any other information I need from any other app. This is more functional than any of the other systems out there. Every morning, I put out the live tiles I need for that day No other system allows me to do that. I don’t know if that was the intent of the WP8 program, but now that I have been using it that way I can’t afford to turn back right now…I would be lost.

    • Marco

      05/30/2013 at 6:49 am

      Your comment really makes me want to buy a Windows Phone :) I’m getting really tired of google services (including Android) for several reasons I have no patience now to explain and my english is neither good enough :) Thank you for your realistic and very well explained ideas.

  2. DWTrump

    05/29/2013 at 5:10 pm

    And I’ll give you 1 reason to stay on WP – Google. I was an Android fan in its early days, but there is nothing that would get me to move to that platform any more. I don’t trust Google at all, and believe that they are full of BS. With the exception of Google Reader, I have completely moved away from using their services (I’m transitioning away from that as well), and I am totally fine with not relying on them for anything in the future.

    • Marco

      05/30/2013 at 6:50 am

      I fully agree

  3. sururdavidssurur

    05/29/2013 at 5:39 pm

    Arnt those all the reasons Android users should defect to the iPhone?

  4. Cuthbert

    05/29/2013 at 6:53 pm

    I dumped my Lumia 920 (which had pathetic battery life and broke TWICE) for the HTC One, man the One is the most beautiful phone ever, far nicer than even the S4 imho. WP8 is unfinished work, too many missing features and too many missing apps, and Microsoft seem to be taking years to bring basic features to it’s phones. Android has so many features and all the latest hardware now I don’t know why anyone would need anything else tbh.

  5. James24

    05/29/2013 at 7:05 pm

    Lumia 920 is better than HTC one. HTC one is a Windows Phone copycat.

    • Cuthbert

      05/29/2013 at 7:19 pm

      Hahahahah fool

      The Lumia looks like a big blob of plastic next to the aluminium unibody of the One.

      The One is currently the *best* Phone on the planet at the minute, and most web reviews concur.

      The One simply DESTROYS the 920, I should know I own both.

  6. Ziggy

    05/29/2013 at 9:52 pm

    Too bad the S4 will be the “One” people vote for with their pocketbooks. HTC may not exist by this time next year. But, to each his own.

  7. Bigmouth

    05/30/2013 at 7:44 am

    If Nokia (or any other Windows Phone maker) comes out with a credible Galaxy Note alternative, I’ll certainly consider it. Note, however, that “credible alternative” means it needs a Wacom stylus, not just a big screen.

  8. pendar747747

    05/30/2013 at 9:50 am

    Well I currently have Samsung Galaxy Ace, and it’s by far the most horrible phone I have ever had. It crashes every second and it even crashed the day I bought it!! I had windows phone back when it just came out and it lacked so many featured but was at least usable!

  9. Sahkma D

    06/01/2013 at 5:03 pm

    HTC One is a morphed copycat of the Lumia 920. There’s the HAAC mic, the tech-specs of the camera, “Blink feed”? More like live tiles.

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