So today Microsoft officially announced the newest version of their mobile operating system, Windows Phone 7 Series, and I have to say I am VERY impressed with the initial details. The user interface is reminiscent of Windows Media Center and XBOX which I have loved using over the years. The key element I like is that the user interaction is all about flow instead of launching little applications — something that makes the iPhone messy when you have a lot of apps installed.
My feeling is that if Microsoft can control the hardware quality, Apple will have a true contender to compete with which is great for the industry. As for where I think Andriod fits in… it feels like Windows CE from 10 years ago.
Pretty exciting for Microsoft and great job to all the teams involved! I can’t wait to use and develop for this platform too!
Check out the links below for some great photos and videos of the interface in action:
Netflix is now on Windows Media Center. You can find it listed under the TV + Movies section, titled Netflix. The video part of the application is powered by Silverlight which means they are not using the native MCML architecture?? I never understood why there was a whole different UI markup language for MCE, but I digress, the great thing about this version of Netflix player is that it also allows you to search and queue!
However, the biggest issue is that it does not work on Windows Media Extenders! I guess that’s why all the manufactures are dropping out. I just don’t understand the reasonings behind things like this… MSFT creates a pretty cool architecture, gets manufactures to create the products, then on the software side there are all sorts of limitations. First, it was you cannot stream DVD’s due to legal issues, fine. Now, you cannot play Netflix via extenders… why? Because it’s in Silverlight?
Here’s more on MCE supporting Silverlight – Windows Media Center Brings Netflix To Consumers Using Silverlight
[ Via Gearlive: Netflix officially comes to Windows Media Center ]
Oh the shock and awe… what is happening to my world? Seems like I’m picking all the wrong technology lately. First HD-DVD, now Windows Media Center Extenders. Apparently, everyone (Linksys, HP, Niveus, D-LINK, Samsung) that makes an extender is dropping their product line. That leaves loud, noisy XBOX 360’s to connect to our Media Center’s remotely. Good thing I stocked up on these when they were down to $50.
Does this mean CE devices (televisions and devices) will come standard with this technology or is MSFT killing this platform — please say it isn’t so!!!! As Patrick Norton from Tekzilla would say, “I’m going to go weep softly in a corner now.”
I’ve been busy working with on the new version of Myro:Home which will run on the 8″ in-wall touchscreen panels. My original plan was to have the same “downloadable” software being able to run on these types of panels, however, the truth is that these panels need special care in order to bring the best performance and stability. I’ve chosen Windows XP Embedded as the OS and can get everything running very quickly. Now, I’m working on adding in specific hooks to the hardware to take advantage of controlling the “bare metal” like LCD and GPIO. Since these devices are not full powered desktop PC’s where you can be a bit less strict using CPU cycles, you cannot afford running things that aren’t necessary. Heat is the biggest problem and when you put panels in walls where ventilation is an issue, you need to use less powerful (less heat producing) architecture.
In the end, I feel I will have a very powerful home control solution that is cost-effective and very competitive!
Part of the gearing up of Myro Control's launch, I have been busy learning how to build, license, and release Windows XP Embedded images. My plans are to offer Myro Control UI on a vast variety of platforms starting with in-wall and tablet touchscreens. The reliably and speed of Windows XPe make it a no brainer. The image is stored on DOM (Disk-On-Module's) so no hard drives to crash, overheat or suck up battery life. I am currently building a Samsung Q1 XPe build of Myro Control (will post videos soon) and will also be using an OEM of a popular tablet.