Microsoft to hold meeting about Windows Phone customization

Microsoft to hold meeting about Windows Phone customization
There has been a lot of talk recently about the possibility that Microsoft let manufacturers start to customize and differentiate the Windows Phone experience in order to create a more diverse and potentially successful platform. You know, like Android. At least that's the manufacturers' theory on the matter. We don't really see it as a necessary option. We think it's more a matter of manufacturers wanting to promote themselves rather than Microsoft's system. 

Still, Microsoft is going to at least have the discussion with manufacturers about the issue. According to Netbooknews, Microsoft is going to have a meeting with Windows Phone OEMs and carrier partners soon, and "Customization and Differentiation options" is going to be one of the topics on the docket. The rest of the plans are all obviously Windows Phone 8 centric with topics giving an overview of Apollo, development capabilities, and release plans. 

Of course, OEMs and carriers will keep pushing for customization, but we'll have to see how much Microsoft will allow if anything. We would still say that there's a little more time to see how Windows Phone develops before going down that road, especially given the potential risks. 

source: Netbooknews via WMPU

FEATURED VIDEO

28 Comments

1. cripton805

Posts: 1485; Member since: Mar 18, 2012

They should add an On/Off UI type of thing. Kinda like if you wanted to turn off Moto's Blur, HTC's Sense, etc... Run skinless windows UI if you wanted.

16. alphadouche

Posts: 3; Member since: Apr 14, 2012

wp7 failed big time partly due to having only 4 decent color accents....no menu background wallpaper...no flash...no custom sms ringtones. . . why was it so hard for them to realise that people want more than 4 usable color themes? and more than 2 color options for background.....why? i just dont understand . . homebrew developers unlocked these options

26. cripton805

Posts: 1485; Member since: Mar 18, 2012

Android and Iphone has 1 color option as far as I know. So, those few options are indeed OPTIONS. Unless you jailbreak or root your phone. I will admit flash is a flaw, but Im pretty sure there might be an app if you want flash. If not, its still a newer device and might be available in the future. The same goes for the custom SMS tones. There might be a way even as stock or might be available after an update or something. You are being real nitpicky though except for the flash. I wouldnt consider them true flaws, id consider it user preference.

18. bloodline

Posts: 706; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

its actually a good idea and gives people a freedom of choice. I wouldnt be surprised at all if this is how microsoft plays it

2. VJo003

Posts: 365; Member since: Mar 11, 2012

On/Off UI - HTC Sense? What u talking about?

3. snowgator

Posts: 3621; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

It was an example.

4. snowgator

Posts: 3621; Member since: Jan 19, 2011

Differentiate how? I am not totally against this, as I just want the platform to improve and survive. But I like there was a "Mango day" where the major overhaul went to all devices and was mostly very successful. Can WP still be WP if there are skins? Be very interesting to see what comes out of this. Microsoft can not afford to lose manufacturers.

5. Droid_X_Doug

Posts: 5993; Member since: Dec 22, 2010

Microsoft can absolutely not afford to lose manufacturers. If they (MS) want to have a credible offering beyond Nokia handsets, they need to figure how to support custom skins. Otherwise, I don't see Sammy or HTC (to name but two manufacturers) making a heavy commitment to WP.

6. Forsaken77

Posts: 553; Member since: Jun 09, 2011

Without customization, all handsets are virtually the same with different cases.

7. Joshing4fun

Posts: 1245; Member since: Aug 13, 2010

Windows phone is so simplistic I find it hard for there to be skins without drastically changing the entire UI. I could see there being optional custom "themes" but not skins. Just look at android: how many people actually like the skins the OEMs put out? I hear almost all complaints about them. Even Sense (a fan favorite) has issues and has become cluttered. Microsoft needs to tread carefully and maintain control with whichever path they choose.

8. jlscott777

Posts: 45; Member since: Feb 10, 2012

I am not for OEM customization but wish Microsoft would make the UI more flexible for the end user to customize, I really do not like the standard metro UI.

9. lubba

Posts: 1313; Member since: Jan 17, 2011

No good idea!

10. eaxvac

Posts: 328; Member since: Jan 15, 2012

Damn if any OEMs screwed this up and affect the battery life, no way I will get their device anymore. Regrets happy Nokia Lumia 900 user

11. nexumus

Posts: 19; Member since: Apr 09, 2012

The only way I can see this boding well for Windows Phone is if they give you the option on each handset for a "vanilla" experience or to go with the manufacturers. Believe it or not there are a few consumers out there who actually DONT like customization and just want it as is. Its like people who go to rent an apartment. There are those who want furnished, just to be done with it, and those who want unfurnished to add their own touch.

12. Luuthian

Posts: 332; Member since: Sep 09, 2011

If MS wants to stay closed in its software it needs to start developing its own hardware, much like Apple. Problem is, MS has never done that outside of the 360 and it likely is apprehensive about doing so. At the rate Windows Phone is moving, it will NEVER become a third player in the market. Computer companies like using Windows because they can attach their personal brand to the software. Currently, they can't do that to Windows Phone. So the outcry of the manufacturers shouldn't have been that big of a surprise. Giv manufacturers what they want or die. That's basically the decision they face. If Wp7 can't scratch the markets surface, WP8 certainly won't when it looks 100% the same.

13. mariosraptor

Posts: 174; Member since: Mar 15, 2012

i really like my lumia as it is. and it is different than any other WP7, it has NOKIA written on it. if i want a sense ui or touch wiz i'll buy again an android phone. microsoft should keep this clean and lean. if there some kind of an extorsion from OEM's then f**k em and tell them not to come back.

14. lubba

Posts: 1313; Member since: Jan 17, 2011

I fear if MS says yes, oems beside Nokia will destroy what makes a WP a WP. I fear they will turn it to an iPhone clone. Just like Android is an iPhone clone.

15. anywherehome

Posts: 971; Member since: Dec 13, 2011

yes, they copied iPhone and added widgets, microsd, multitasking, mass storage, free to install, copy, better lockscreens, complete customization and more more more, .... if Apple did this their system would be still in beta, like it looks even now (iPad charging time 20 hours when plaing 3D games!!!) ;-)

17. digitalw

Posts: 79; Member since: Dec 20, 2011

I agree that to some extent Microsoft should allow customisation of their OS but.. isn;t that aginst the Nokia-Microsoft contract!? Isn't NOKIA the one that have exclusive customisation options!?

19. bloodline

Posts: 706; Member since: Dec 01, 2011

Everyone wants to be like android POW

24. Schmao

Posts: 365; Member since: Jul 05, 2009

If you are a coach, and you realize that a coach of an opposing team is using a very effective way of training - superior to yours- , why wouldn't you do something similar.

20. s1ebee

Posts: 20; Member since: Apr 04, 2012

I remember a few months back there was a story right here on PA about the customization options for WP... To allow customizing without damaging the ecosystem, the writer suggested themes. For instance, a background picture and custom live tiles for your favorite football team, this could be bundled together with custom apps. I thought this was the perfect solution to add at least some customization for those that want it, without the need for those hideous nokia skins that cropped up about a month ago, you could even go a step further and create theme generating apps, for those that want to be even more individual. I currently own a Nokia Lumia 800, and i'm not sure if i would even want a background on my homescreen. The thing that sets WP apart, design wise, especially on the Nokia handsets (with clear black display) is when it used with the black background option, it looks genuinely impressive. As soon as you start putting background pictures and stuff on there, it would just begin to look cluttered IMO. So for me, as much as i can say i would like a bit more customization, I'm just not sure what it is that I would change. I don't want a skin over the operating system like Sense for WP. If I wanted sense i'd just get an Android phone

21. good2great

Posts: 1042; Member since: Feb 22, 2012

DONT DO IT MS!!!! lol the black/white option for background is cool... but they should at least allow you to color each tile whatever you want... more like the tiles in windows 8 tablet demos... all that skin and theme talk is stupid... why should they mimic android? be confident in your product MS!!!

23. Schmao

Posts: 365; Member since: Jul 05, 2009

It is not mimicking android. Btw, whats wrong with thishttp://wmpoweruser.com/customized-wallpaper-for-windows-phone-7-concept/

25. good2great

Posts: 1042; Member since: Feb 22, 2012

wow that actually looks pretty good... +1

28. s1ebee

Posts: 20; Member since: Apr 04, 2012

that does look pretty good to be fair

22. Schmao

Posts: 365; Member since: Jul 05, 2009

I think a lot of people are missing the point here. The point of customization is to give the users an OPTION. No one is forcing you to put up wallpapers or be stuck with a manufacturers UI, they are just giving you the choice. Like how Windows Mobile had sense. I think it was pretty well made for its day, and if you didn't like it you could turn it off and enjoy stock WM6.X. Case in point, choice is a good thing, whether or not your like the other option, at least you have it.

27. nexumus

Posts: 19; Member since: Apr 09, 2012

Actually Schmao most consumers don't want choice. Albeit most consumers aren't very bright either. They don't want choice, we want you're marketing team to tell us yours is the best, period. And if we as consumers tell you we want something else, you say "no you don't." Hence, apple.

Latest Stories

This copy is for your personal, non-commercial use only. You can order presentation-ready copies for distribution to your colleagues, clients or customers at https://www.parsintl.com/phonearena or use the Reprints & Permissions tool that appears at the bottom of each web page. Visit https://www.parsintl.com/ for samples and additional information.