by March 8, 2013 0 comments

Microsoft has invested its resources in creating an operating system that provides a consistent user experience across desktop and its tablet counterparts. Here are the killer features of Windows Phone 8 that its competitors still cannot boast of…
1) Kid’s Corner: Parents around the world have one less thing to worry about with Windows Phone 8. Their kids cannot meddle with the phone and delete important mails and make random calls! With Kid’s Corner, users can set up a customized “guest” account that only selected apps, games,music and videos that you want your kids to see. Isn’t there something similar on Android or iOS? With Android 4.2, users do get to set up multiple “user profiles”, but this is restricted to tablets. eanwhile, iOS has no such feature available. So, WP8 does win this round hands-down.

2) Live Tiles: Live tiles has become a signature of the WP8 and Windows 8 operating systems. They provide a consistent experience across all the platforms, and can be resized and moved around on the main screen of WP8. The unique feature is that they serve as widgets and shortcuts at the same time. Meanwhile, in Android, live widgets are separate from shortcuts and take up additional screen real estate. On iOS, there are only shortcut icons and no widgets available. Updates from apps are only done through the notifications bar, although widgets can be added on jailbroken iOS devices.

3) Integration With Windows 8, Xbox: One of the USPs of the Windows Phone 8 is supposed to be it’s tight integration with Windows 8 and Xbox. With an app called Xbox Smartglass, you will be able to use Windows Phone 8 as a remote control to control music,videos and apps on your Xbox 360.With the app, Windows Phone 8 devices can also be used as a second screen, for example in Xbox live games. This comes in handy if you are subscribed to Xbox Music, and have a party at your place, to be able to remotely control playback of audio/ video. Meanwhile, Windows 8 apps are supposed to be easily portable to the WP8 platform, as both of them employ the same back-end C/C++ code and APIs, and so only the front end needs to be redesigned. Microsoft hopes that this will encourage developers to ideally build apps that can run across both platforms.

4) Internet Explorer 10: We covered the desktop version of IE10 in the reviews section of this issue, and IE10 on WP8 does an equally great job. With twice as much HTML5 support as IE9 and hardware-accelerated graphics, increased efficiency and fast
load times, it makes us forgive the inferior versions of IE9 and earlier iterations. Since there is no version of Chrome available for WP8, it was critical that IE10 did a good job on the Windows Phone 8. IE10’s mobile version also has the opular “Do Not Track” feature as well as the smartscreen filter that warns against malicious websites.

5) Rooms: This is a new feature in WP8 which serves as a private “group” where only invited contacts can share messages, upload photos and attach notes. The cool thing is that a Room can be pinned to the start menu so that it can be accessed instantly. This provides a private space for contacts to share content. This is something unique to WP8, as Android and iOS do not have baked in features to hold such private meetings, although Whatsapp offers the feature to have conferences with multiple contacts.

 

6) Wallet Hub And NFC: Windows Phone 8 jumps onto the NFC bandwagon, enabling the technology in all of their devices. The Wallet Hub works a lot like Google Wallet and iOS Passbook, in that you can store multiple details such as credit cards,debit cards and loyalty reward cards. NFC-enabled payments will be possible with this, but once again, this depends on third-party apps supporting the wallet. Loyalty and membership cards can be stored, and even pinned to the start menu. The NFC technology also allows videos,pictures and URLs to be shared. While compatibility between Windows Phones is good, there are problems
sharing content with Android devices.

7) VOIP Integration: Though this may be something under the hood, it is a critical addition to the OS. With VOIP included in the standard APIs for WP8, third-party developers can use it to offer many VOIP services. One of the coolest things is that VOIP will work even when the app is closed, meaning that you can still receive calls on Skype even when the app is closed. Since Skype is owned by Microsoft, it also integrates with contacts so you can check if contacts are online and receive IMs through Skype really fast. This level of VOIP integration is not available on either the Android or iOS platforms, although third-party apps can be used to make VOIP calls. However, on those platforms, the apps have to be open or running in the background to receive VOIP calls.

How You can Benefit from Windows Phone 8
It does have Internet Explorer 10, expandable storage support, screenshot ability, HD resolution support, etc., but what is it that Windows Phone 8 has which matters to your role? In this article, we tell you the answer.

As a consumer
1. Excellent social networking integration: Neither Android nor iOS has as good social networking integration as Windows Phone does. The `People’ hub of Windows Phone 8 integrates contacts from different social networks in one place as a central list. As such, in most cases, you really do not need dedicated apps for Facebook/Twitter/ LinkedIn/Skype, etc. on Windows Phone 8 as you can stay in touch making use of the integrated social networking functionality, making the `People’ hub more than just an address book.

2. Parental control features: With Windows Phone 8, you can use the `Kid’s Corner’, so that children are allowed access to only the apps, games, videos and music you choose for them.

3. More feature-rich photography: Once you download Lenses from the Store, it lets you take more creative photos using your camera. Also, the `Photos’ hub shows a feed of your contacts’ latest shared pictures, in addition to featuring your online albums.

4. Music + Videos hub that supports iTunes: Windows Phone 8 allows you to sync your iTunes library with your phone too.
5. Apps and gaming with Xbox integration: Integration with the Xbox service means that you can message your Xbox friends, see how your scores and achievements measure up, dress up your avatar, etc., a feature which takes advantage of Microsoft’s Xbox success. As far as the Windows Phone store is concerned, it recommends apps based on what you have already downloaded.

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