by January 29, 2013 0 comments

The modern UI in Microsoft Windows, which is pretty much talk-of-the-town today, was introduced with Windows Phone 7 before being included in Windows for the PC. Many termed the UI at that time to be simplistic and blocky in appearance. Others saw the change in the UI (compared to the earlier Windows Mobile) as requiring a learning curve. Few others felt the live tiles right on the Start page to be an information overload. They were used to a desktop-like environment, with the Start menu, a clean wallpaper without much icons covering up the space, etc. For such users, Silveos phone is a good choice. This application gives you a desktop-like UI on Windows Phone. The latest version available (1.5) at the time of writing is pretty small at just 5 MBs.

Window and file management

Windows in Silveos Phone support transparency and carry a theme similar to the standard Aero theme on Windows Vista. Double-tapping on the titlebar causes the window to alternate its state between maximized and restored. Windows can be dragged easily and the touch feedback to dragging is responsive. The file explorer is pleasing to the eye with a nice set of icons and good choice of colors.


Silveos phone includes a browser that has a similar look and feel to IE 7, except for the fact that tabs are not supported. Browsing is quick and buttons are sufficiently large for use on a phone’s touchscreen. There is also an RSS reader which is very basic and comes with a few pre-defined feeds but does its job well. Also included is an app called Virtual Earth which basically fetches imagery (map data) from Bing and supports panning and zooming touch-based gestures.


The notepad comes with a well-thought toolbar of icons, considering the phone’s touchscreen usage and the cut-copy-paste functions work properly. What is probably the most fun to do is to use Silveos phone’s Paint, which is extremely responsive and smooth. The text files created in Notepad get saved in the TXT format under the `My documents’ folder of Silveos phone’s isolated storage, but images saved using Paint get an IMG extension, although both get opened properly from File Explorer using the respective programs. There is also a standard calculator with large, easy-to-use buttons.


Games such as Chess, Solitaire, Spider Solitaire and Minesweeper are provided and work well. The app did get noticably slow when we were running these games on an HTC HD7.

Desktop gadgets

Silveos phone has a clock, a calendar and a sticky notes gadget by default. The sticky notes work properly and the clock’s hand animation is smooth but tapping on the calendar widget generated exceptions every time.

Control Panel

Interestingly, Silveos Phone also has a Control Panel of its own, where users can set desktop wallpapers, specify a theme and even choose a user account picture in an almost identical UI to the one in Windows on the PC.


The taskbar comes with what can be termed as a Start button, a couple of quick launch icons (for the file explorer and the browser) as well as a date/time applet. Although much of the UI seems to be inspired from Vista, the taskbar’s UI clearly seems to be inspired from Windows 7.

Overall, the application seems to be a good choice for Windows Phone users who are not comfortable with the tiles of the modern UI and Silveos phone itself does score high in terms of attractiveness of the UI but regular exceptions generated with a few apps need to be worked on. Silveos phone works with both Windows Phone 7 and 8 and is available free of charge in the Windows Phone store.

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