Back in second week of February Microsoft released first Windows 10 Mobile Technical Preview Build 9941.12498 and followed it up with Build 10051, Build 10052, Build 10080, Build 10136 and Build 10149. Build 10149 was released within a week after build 10136 release.
When the first Build 9941.12498 came it was not for all windows phone to try out. Rather, it was for only a few selected models. Build 10051 was the first one which was released for a more general testing. I installed the same on my Lumia730 and it was not good for my phone. Not in terms of UI or the changes Microsoft brought. Well, the direction Windows 10 Mobile is going I liked the new UI, new notification centre but the bugs oh God there were so many. The phone would freeze almost every time I tried calling, or checking my mails, or anything. And because of that I uninstalled it and rolled back to Windows Phone 8.1.
Every time a new build would come I would be tempted to try it out but then never did installed any of the other builds until Build10136 came out two week back. Many changes were there; APP List icons changed, letters were changed from small case to upper case which looked more pronounced when selecting.
Then a few days after release of 10136, a new build was released Build 10149 and that really was looking promising. It was very stable and the looks of whole UI seemed more cohesive. Improvements over previous builds can be seen here. This was the first build where important apps like Outlook mail, calendar were not missing unlike previous builds. It was more polished than the previous ones and also more stable.
On 10th of July another build was released, build 10166, with this build released for the first time in Insider Preview program both the builds for desktop version and mobile version of Windows 10 are on same build number.
I have got three Nokia Lumias at present. Two of them Lumia 720 and Lumia 630 I am testing for Windows 10 Mobile while the third one Lumia 730 I am keeping on WP 8.1 with Denim update.
I’ll not go into details of each build as still Windows 10 Mobile is a work of progress. Instead I’ll be comparing the present build and the coming ones with Windows Phone 8.1. So you do have a fair idea of what more you’ll be getting when you update to Windows 10 Mobile or buy a new Windows 10 Mobile enabled phone later this year.
Back in 2012 when Microsoft first released Windows Phone 8 alongside HTC 8X, HTC 8S and Nokia’s Lumia 920 and Lumia 820 there were many features missing and notification center was one of them. I am more of an iOS and Apple person and have been using iPhone5 since the days of its release
With Microsoft releasing Notification Centre in Windows Phone I really liked the way it was implemented. With Windows10 Mobile company is taking the idea to further steps. Now you can have more settings fields, total sixteen. A huge increment in number total number of settings, these includes settings like flashlight and mobile data on-off. These were some of the setting which users have been demanding for long and Microsoft has worked on those feedbacks.
To access these quick settings just swipe down from top of the screen and you will get four quick settings, on clicking the expand button you can access all of your settings.
Notification and action center as implemented by Microsoft was good but there were some quirks in it like in your quick settings Bluetooth button once clicked would switch on and again clicking would turn off the Bluetooth of the phone, while with Wi-Fi setting once you have clicked On the Wi-Fi and you want to turn off the Wi-Fi setting, clicking on the Wi-Fi button will take you to main settings page, and then you have to turn off. Now with Windows10 Mobile Build 10149 and 10166 Microsoft has brought consistency in functionality of settings, clicking on particular setting button will directly turn on or off the setting, if you long press that button you will be taken to main page of that settings.
Windows Phone with some of its nice and nifty new tricks was sometimes very irritating, and one of my favourite issue with Windows Phone was ‘Settings’. Settings for WP8/8.1 are the worst implemented idea I have seen out in the market. This was also one of the reasons of people getting irritated with Windows Phone, the endless and unsorted list under ‘system and applications’. It was really frustrating to find a particular setting, with Windows10 Mobile Microsoft has ironed out this issue with grouping settings.
A search feature in under ‘Settings’ is also added and I am really liking the new search feature, you just type a settings and voila there it is.
Microsoft has added face detection in Camera App in Window 10 Mobile which was previously not there. This face detection is also present for front camera as well so you can be sure of taking great selfies time and again :).
Microsoft changed the People App, now the photos of your contacts are not squares but comes in circles. In addition, the People Live Tile has a new animation where instead of flipping square photos of contact you have circles which move. The one thing I’ll miss the most is Me Tile, as the people hub is gone for now.
When WP was launched back in 2012 there was not much customization for start screen other than theme colours and tile placement. Over time Microsoft brought the ability to use background image on start screen along with transparent tiles. It created a nice parallax effect. With Windows 10 Mobile Microsoft took the idea to one more step further and now you can also have wallpaper on your mobile. This wallpaper is also visible on the App List page as well. Also Microsoft has given users the option of having control over the transparency of Live Tiles which is nice as options are always better. When you are in multitasking mode on your phone this wallpaper will be visible there instead of theme colour which was visible previously.
Here you can see the difference between WP 8.1 with Lumia 730(middle) and Windows 10 Mobile, Lumia 630(left) with Tile picture and on Lumia 720(right) with Full screen picture, and if you don’t want any of these you just select None of these and are good to go with your selected theme colour. Also there is huge increase in number of accent colours, now total of 50 colours increased from 21.
There are some really exciting changes in Windows 10 Mobile still it remains to be seen if Window 10 Mobile will gain market share around the world and put Microsoft back into the ring of mobile domination to fight with Apple and Google. If Windows 10 Mobile does it we will definitely witness new war of innovation in mobile technology. As we are moving towards cloud and mobile technology, be assured there are pretty amazing great features and hardware coming your way. Whoever be the winner, customers are definitely going to love it.