Windows® Phone 7 Plain and Simple (Book Review)

Windows® Phone 7 Plain & SimpleThe author Michael Stroh did well to get this book published so close to the release of the WindowsPhone, the book is a must have for a new product like the WindowsPhone!

The first bit of information gleemed from the book about the Windowsphone is that it is a capacitance screen that only responds to human touch. His book does a much better job of explaining how to use your new device than the included manual does and encourages users to setup advanced features such as the Finding Lost Phone at the start before you forget. The book takes care to visually show in detail and with plenty of examples describing how you use the devices many features such as it’s inventive typing and speech functions.  All this guidance makes it possible to become comfortable with your new mobile device much quicker than you could by trial and error, and many people understand that with a new mobile device it can often feel like learning a new language.

It’s great that the book focuses fairly heavily on contact management application and explains the delicate process of linking multiple accounts; unlinking accounts which is unique to WindowsPhone reducing duplicate contact listings. Another important part of the WindowsPhone revolves around the calendar module which appears initially a little daunting but after stepping through examples in the book it all makes sense and you pick up small tips on how to work more naturally with your mobile device and even with multiple calendars.

The chapter on browsing the web is good but seems to offer some features that are not in the initial release such as search via voice commands but does step you through in detail how to save images, bookmark websites, pin websites to start page, search for text on pages and adjust browser privacy settings. The chapter on playing music and video is a little brief but still manages to cover all the features, the book also helped me find the setting to adjust the radio from speaker back to headset mode which had me stumped.

The book chapter on taking pictures and video is fairly extensive but covers all the aspects such as auto uploading photos direct to Skydrive or selecting to upload then individually. The chapters on Shopping for Apps & Playing Games would have been helpful when I got my WindowsPhone a few weeks ago. This book is a great present for someone who is planning on purchasing a WindowsPhone soon or has just recently purchased one and looking to get their head around all the features quickly.

If you are looking at purchasing the new WindowsPhone for Christmas, I suggest you will want to check out the easy and colourful guide on the WindowsPhone available from O’Reilly. If you want to see more about the device you can see a fun and great commercial that steps you through some of the functionality of the Windows device below.

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