30 days with Windows Phone 7

Today is day one of my 30-day experiment switching from the iPhone 4 that I love to an HTC HD7S runnning Windows Phone 7.

Today starts a new "30 Days" series. This month I am abandoning my iPhone 4 to spend 30 Days With Windows Phone 7. I have an HTC HD7S with Windows Phone 7, and I am all set to see what Microsoft's mobile OS has to offer.

It won't be easy for Windows Phone 7 to win me over. I love my iPhone 4. Before that, I loved my iPhone 3GS. But, there was a point--years ago, before I switched to the iPhone--when I used to be a devoted Windows Mobile user, and specifically a dedicated fan of the HTC Windows Mobile devices.

This isn't the first time I have used Windows Phone 7, though. Last November I switched to an HTC Surround for a couple of weeks. I wasn't impressed. I found both the Windows Phone 7 OS, and the HTC hardware disappointing and I was glad to switch back to my iPhone 4.

But, it is 10 months later now, and Microsoft has made a number of improvements to the mobile OS. A major update dubbed "NoDo" was released in March of this year which added copy and paste functionality--among other things--to Windows Phone 7.

I'd like to be able to review "Mango"--the new Windows Phone 7.5 update. But, devices like the HTC Titan and HTC Radar that are built with Windows Phone 7.5 are just being announced and aren't yet available. It would be nice if HTC issued an update for devices like the HD7S to upgrade it to the latest Windows Phone version, but I won't hold my breath.

Speaking of HTC, that brings me to one very important distinction I need to make up front about the 30 Days With Windows Phone 7 series. The goal of the series is to work with Microsoft's mobile OS, and explore its features and capabilities. One thing that makes platforms like Windows Phone 7 and Android unique from iOS, though, is the diversity of hardware.

An iPhone is an iPhone, and Apple goes to great lengths to deliver a consistent user experience by maintaining control of the iOS software, and the iPhone hardware that runs it. Contrast that with Windows Phone 7 or Android, where a variety of smartphones are available from a diverse array of manufacturers, and your mileage may vary greatly depending on the hardware you use to run the mobile OS.

I did not like the HTC Surround, but so far I am pretty impressed with the HD7S. But, the series is about Windows Phone 7, not HTC, so I will try not to focus on issues that are hardware or HTC specific. Where it is relevant, I will point out things that are unique--whether good, bad, or indifferent--about the HD7S, and I will also mention features and capabilities included in the upcoming "Mango" update.

If you have any questions or issues with Windows Phone 7 that you would like me to explore during the 30 Days With Windows Phone 7 series, email them to me at tbradley@pcworld.com.

I hope you will check back each day and follow along as I go through the 30 Days With Windows Phone 7 journey. I look forward to your comments and feedback.

Read the last "30 Days" series: 30 Days With Google+

This story, "30 days with Windows Phone 7" was originally published by PCWorld.

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