Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Windows Phone Review

Last month I received a Nokia Lumia 920 Windows Phone. I received this by using my upgrade and used the buy one/ get one free deal they had going on.

My experience as well as my daughter's was pure HELL! As former iPhone users for the last 4 years, we found the phone to be big, heavy, and difficult to understand. And to make things harder, it was no easy task to transfer contacts, notes, and impossible to transfer our iTunes music.

It took me all night to transfer the pics. I had to sync them all to my computer and then transfer them into my new phone. This proved to be the easiest task by far.

Then it was a most inconvenient thing to transfer contacts. Without contacts, you phone is pretty much useless. I had to back up my contacts to the Apple Cloud and then go to that program and export my contacts and save the file to my computer. Then I had to use my Hotmail to import the contacts so that they would show up on my new phone.

For my notes, I was using the built-in note program on my iPhone.  I had to email myself those notes one by one. Then I had to choose a note app that would sync between my computer, Windows Phone, and my Google Tablet. Luckily, Evernote was the app that did all three. I have tried Evernote in the past on the iPhone but for some reason didn't keep using it. It was easier to use the built-in app. But, now that I have started using it again, I just love it! Plus, with the Live Tiles, I can pin individual notes and see it on my home screen without opening it up.

For the calender, I was using Google Calender. At first my schedule was showing up on the Windows Phone. But then it stopped and I couldn't get it working again. So I transferred my calender to Hotmail.

I do all my banking transactions on the computer and my debit card and had a wonderful app on my iPhone that was just like a check register. I loved it. Unfortunately, the app was not available on my new phone. Which in the end, made me decide to trade this damn phone in.

Upon trying to take the phone back, it was obvious it was not going to be an easy smooth task without more fees. So, I went back home to think on this some more. Now I have been trying free Apps, because I'm a cheapskate. But after realizing that trading phones was no easy task decided to look again (for the umpteenth time) for an app to replace my check register. I found one that looked like what I wanted for $1.99. I grudgingly bought it. And whoa and behold! I loved it. And it was even better than my iPhone app. And guess what, it has a live tile, so I can see my balance without opening up the app.

Interestingly one app I have used for Aunt Flo, was to be found on the Windows Phone and transferred beautifully. Go figure?

Now, that these issues were resolving ever so goddamn slowly, I decided I would keep this phone and just have to get used to it.

After, my cheap cover I bought from Amazon came, I liked the phone better. So now the only issue is music. Since I really don't listen to music on my phone it isn't a big issue. Just that my iTunes music is just on my computer now and my grand kids can't use my phone to sing and dance.

My daughter had a hard time also. I don't really know her issues all that much. But she does have a big issue with the music.

So in retrospect, I would advise everyone to use either Hotmail or Google to keep all your contacts, pictures, and calender information. It would make life ever so much easier. Do this before hand when choosing a smart phone. Keep in mind that Windows Phone will integrate better with Hotmail because it's all Microsoft. Androids use Google based products (I think). So my Google Tablet was a cinch to use since I was already using Google. I just wasn't using it for contacts. And Hotmail is easier with the Windows Phone.

I already was using a Hotmail email address so now Hotmail has my contacts and calender stuff on it now also. And now everything automatically shows up on my phone without me doing anything extra.

So just be prepared for this. Transfer these things beforehand. Don't wait until your phone arrives in the mail. Because it will take you forever to figure things out. And with 3 kids here at the time, I was losing my mind.

So now this is my personalized home screen: These tiles are live and flip and flicker all the time. This takes getting used to.

What I like about the Windows Phone:

  • Integrates all my contacts from Phone, Facebook, and  Twitter. So I just have to pull up a name and have a choice in whether I want to phone, text, email, write on their Facebook wall, or Tweet them.
  • Live Tiles. I don't have to open an app up to check the weather, bank balance, appointments, or grocery list. (My weather app flips and tells me the temp and shows if it's sunny, snowing, raining, night or day and then it flips to the map. Also, my grocery app doesn't have any items right now. Which is why you don't see any items. My Xbox avatar bounces around all the time also.)
  • Me Tile: I can post an update to Facebook and Twitter at the same time. See my last post. See all my notifications from all my platforms. I can also see news from my favorite people. This is all in one spot.  
  • Large screen
  • Front facing camera
  • Skyping
What I hate about the Windows Phone:
  • It's awkward to navigate with one hand and one thumb. 

  • It's too heavy to navigate with one hand and one thumb

  • You can't get all the apps you loved on the iPhone

  • iTunes music is gone

  • I hate the choice in ringtones and such

  • I hate the app for Facebook, Twitter, and Pinterest. I had to make do with alternative apps which I really don't like either.
But, I guess I can live with that and soon I won't even remember what I hate about it.

So this is my opinion and experience with switching to a Windows Phone. I am a young older person so I would have a hard time with change. But my daughter had a hard time and she's in her 20s. 

I decided to write my own personal review, because I'm tired of seeing all these happy happy reviews of others and their easy experience with switching.  It certainly wasn't in my case. It's been almost a month now and I'm still getting used to it.

Have any of you had harrowing experiences with switching out phones?

UPDATE: Hotmail is now being transferred to If you have Hotmail, everything will be automatically transferred there.

Update:  I finally had enough of this phone and sold it in May. The only thing I miss is the large screen. I'll deal with it. I'm happy to be rid of it.

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