As yesterday passed, so too did official support of the Windows Phone platform with its current version, 8.1. Microsoft officially stopped supporting Windows Phone as of July 11, 2017. The Windows Phone brand officially began as Windows Phone 7 in 2010.
I had a Windows Phone device. I adored the actual operating system experience. Mine was the beautiful and unique Nokia Lumia 920.
Transport yourself back to 2012, and consider this device. It really was a looker. Here are the images we took of it over the years. I had it in red.
I loved the UI. The camera on the phone took stunning pictures. The official apps included a few ahead of their time. Nokia City Lens, for instance, used augmented reality to let you look through your phone at businesses in front of you to pull contextual information, reviews and the like.
Then there was Cinemagraph, an app that turned pics into GIFs on your phone with the ability to keep selective areas static with others in motion.
The actual build of the phone was great, and its heft and form factor coupled to hold nicely during use. It was a bit big, sure, but I liked it for that. That heft gave way to a solid battery, too.
What wound up being the big problem for my Windows Phone experience is what I’d wager cost the platform its life: application support.
It took years and years for official apps like Instagram to hit Windows Phone. Smaller developers weren’t even bothering with the platform at all, and Microsoft’s app support never picked up the slack. A few devs saw the gap and made unofficial apps of quality, but the large majority of stuff up for sale and download in the Windows Marketplace consisted of terrible knockoffs.
That drove me away from Windows Phone. Not the devices, not the OS, not the UI, not being an oddball. I couldn’t get the apps I wanted to truly enjoy the experience. Windows Phone died for me around 2014. This? This was just a death rattle.
You know what I miss? Don’t make fun of me here, but I miss the Zune. Man, I loved that MP3 player. The desktop experience, the actual device itself, the UI, the touchpad controls.
Does anyone else remember the Windows Platform platform fondly?