MIX 2010 Day 1 Recap: Got Windows Phone 7 Series?

Greetings Readers!

I’m sure that by now, most of you have heard at least something that has come out of Microsoft’s MIX 2010 today, probably from our keynote live blog, but there is a lot of newsworthy information that hasn’t been talked about too much so I am going to share a bit of a recap of all of the juicy information I found out today.

The day started off with the keynote which was quite interesting or at least it was if you have the least bit of interest in Windows Phone 7 Series.   There were plenty of demos on how to write applications to ready to demo applications from Seesmic and even Netflix.  I wasn’t too shocked to see applications from Seesmic or Shazam or anything but the Netflix steaming app really surprised me considering there is still no Netflix app for the iPhone.

The experience on the phone seems to be very smooth and is obviously very dependent on having a network to connect to.  Between notifications and the fact that the phone pulls most of its information from the cloud, if you have no network connection, the phone seems pretty crippled as to what it can do.  I’m not a huge cloud fan for this reason but I will hold off until everything is ready to ship to say just how bad of an idea this is.

The capabilities of the phone are very impressive.  Thanks to the high, minimum hardware specs such as 256MB of ram, 8GB flash drive, 5MP camera, DirectX 9 acceleration and much more.  They demonstrated the whole idea of playing a 3D Xbox Live arcade game on the phone, Windows and the 360.  I wasn’t as impressed by that since XNA which the phone uses has been doing this for a while, but I was impressed by the power of the phone.  The game it was playing looked to be as good if not better a quality as many of my PSP games.  In the mobile gaming market, it has the potential to be a major player.  That said, I am slight annoyed that they aren’t saying what graphics chip the phone is using although I suspect that it is nVidia’s Tegra 2.

There was also some interesting talk in terms of what you can do for business models.  We found out that ads can show up over your content like a pop-up ad which is extremely annoying.  We were being shown an AP News app when suddenly the bottom 1/3 or so of the screen had a Ford Focus driving on it for several seconds.  As a hater of ads that get in the way of the content and experience, this makes me want to bang my head against the wall.  Luckily, there are more ways to monetize your app but not as many as there should be.  You will be able to sell apps as normal and even let people try apps before they buy them which is awesome.  One of the things that I noticed that was not mentioned, but I love is the fact that at least with the apps, there are no Microsoft points, just an actual dollar amount.  Whether that is the case with the Zune Marketplace on the phone, I have yet to find that out but I am glad to see that they appear to be moving away from the whole points nonsense.  One way you won’t be able to monetize your app, at least initially, is with downloadable content.  At launch, there will be no in-app purchases.  If you want to have downloadable for your games or whatever, you will want to hold off a while.  The last thing to note about purchases is that you can use a credit card or whatever or you can have it billed to your phone bill.

After they keynote and intro to Windows Phone 7 Series, there wasn’t too much of note although I did have some great conversations with some people from Internet Explorer, XNA and others.  I will share those conversations on the next Global Geek News Podcast because I am too tired to write separate posts for those.

I hope to have the chance to record the podcast tomorrow since I didn’t have time today and there is a huge surprise for you all with the new show as the new Intro is finally done and ready to go!  I can’t wait to hear what you guys think about it.  Anyway, stay tuned for the live blog of day two’s keynote where we will learn about IE 9 and who knows what else.  More MIX 2010 coverage to come!