As I’ve mentioned numerous times, I’ve been an Android user for years. About this time last year, I ditched the green robot and purchased an HTC One M8 running Windows 8.1 to replace my aging Samsung Note 2 device. The HTC One M8 is a beautiful 5″ phone with outstanding sound and performance. Unlike many new Samsung and Apple devices it does allow for an SD card to expand on-board storage.
I was less than enamored with the Windows Phone 8.1 experience. Though I like it better than Android Jellybean, which was running on the Note 2, I felt it had many idiosyncrasies bringing down my productivity. The supposed “app gap” between Android/iOS and Windows Phone was really not a challenge. The issues were more with Windows 8.1 and the user interface.
As soon as possible I jumped into the Windows Insider program and installed Windows Mobile 10 on the device. Not only was it much faster, but many of the issues I encountered under Windows 8.1 were gone. The live tiles, user interface, and app selection are top-notch. I figured I’d be thrilled when the forthcoming Microsoft Lumia 950 and 950xl arrived.
Well, not so much. While I think the Windows Mobile 10 operating system is far more advanced than either iOS 9 or Android Kit Kat (I haven’t really tried Marshmallow yet.), I feel the new devices are not worth the $600 price tag. I’m actually not even sure where Windows Mobile is going. While Microsoft is bullish on Cloud first, many are stating that the Windows 10 universal app model and Windows Mobile may be a losing strategy.
The reports are coming in on the 950 devices. While good they are not perceived as “great.” One of my co-workers has a 950XL. I tried it and felt is is a decent device. I did feel that my year-old One M8 was almost a better device, however. The metal body, the solid feel, – those attributes are expected in business class device. The 950xl felt more like a consumer device and not the computer that is a daily go-to productivity tool.
I also had decent hopes for Contiuum, the much-touted ability for the Lumia 95 (XL) to be plugged into a monitor and used as a secondary PC. However, I already see this is not really what I need. I’m writing this on my very-captible Surface Pro 3. I find the Surface Pro quite sufficient in being portable. As it is, companies like Remix (http://www.jide.com/en/remixos) are expecting Android and Chrome OS will merge allowing a similar experience.
I’ll wait and see for now.