With Microsoft’s new wonder toy, the Windows Phone 7, in town, things are definitely going to change. For starters, new application development platform, new user interface, new shiny tow to compete with. While all that is good, healthy progress in mobile phone arena, another thing is also for sure – questions! With a new OS, new user queries, confusions and issues are bound to arise, with people trying to find what gets done how and where.
Find below AddictiveTips’ collection of 10 most essential Windows Phone 7 tips and tricks, right after the jump.
1. TALKING TO YOUR PHONE
The Windows Phone 7 is the latest addition in smartphone platforms, so you can talk to it – yeah, literally. You can activate the device’s voice control mechanism by pressing and holding the Windows key at the bottom of your screen. Try saying ‘Open Calendar’ for example, it’ll hear you.
2. ADDING APPS & CONTACTS TO THE START PAGE
Your start page can become the placeholder for all your favorite applications and contacts, much similar to the Android OS. To add apps to your landing page, browse your applications list, and press and hold the one that you want to move to start page. From the contextual menu, select ‘Pin to Start’ and the application in question will show up on the start screen.
For adding contacts, simply find the desired ones in your phone book, and tap the ‘pin’ icon. You’ll see them on the start screen as well, ready to be speed-dialed at will.
3. CHANGING YOUR PHONE’S THEME
Windows Phone 7 devices are coming in carrier specific, and we all know how these cellular operators love to bring in their own touch to our beloved gadgets. Hence, chances are you’ll either be seeing a red, blue or orange theme dominant on your new Windows Phone 7 device. Don’t like the color? No sweat. Head over to the menu list, the Settings and select Theme. You can choose the background color from black or white, and nice accent colors to choose from.
4. DISCOVER MORE BY SWIPING TO THE LEFT
The concept behind Windows Phone 7 was that of panoramic tiles, where the user swipes them aside to get to more information. Hence, it is worth every bit to try the ‘swipe to the left’ gesture at every screen just in case more is there waiting to be revealed.
5. I SEE THE DOTS …
Here’s an interesting one – whenever you notice that the bottom of your screen has been invaded by three dots, panic not! They’re here to help! These three dots indicate that there is a menu available for options, providing quick access to various features. For example, in the photo playback mode, the options menu will let you delete an image or perform a quick upload.
6. CHANGING WALLPAPER ON WINDOWS PHONE 7
Windows Phone 7 interface is mostly two-colored; however, you can change the background image on the very first screen you see when the device is turned on. Here you can choose either the stock images or one of your own. Once image is selected, you can crop it to fit your liking. Tick the check box and you’re done, having a new wallpaper on your flashy Windows Phone 7 device.
7. SETTING A PASSWORD
So your phone now contains a lot of your private information, ranging from your email to Facebook and access to your SkyDrive and what not. Better to protect it all with a password. WP7 gives the option of setting a four digit passcode to lock unwanted intruders out. Check out the Lock and Wallpaper settings to activate this.
8. NO LOCATION SERVICES MEANS BETTER BATTERY
There is no argument to the fact that location-based services and applications are great. However, they are big battery-killers, and hence a life without them would mean more juice for your phone. If geotagging and locating yourself on the map is not your cake, better head over to the Location option in Settings and move the slider to off.
9. TOGGLE BETWEEN AUTO-CORRECTION
On screen keyboard with a capacitive screen is a dream-come-true input mechanism. However, there is a catch – the often occurring misspellings and incorrect entries. Realizing this, Microsoft has added an option to ‘Correct misspelt words’ under Keyboard in Settings menu. This can come in really handy if your text input is in one of the dictionary languages, so it is on by default. Find it irritating? Then you can turn it off as well.
10. ADD FACEBOOK AND QUICK UPLOAD IMAGES TO FACEBOOK
While Windows Phone 7 comes with a dedicated Facebook app, you can also add Facebook as an account for better and truer integration. Go to Settings –> Email & Accounts, put in your Facebook login information and all your contacts, pictures and other information will spread appropriately across your Windows Mobile 7 device.
Under the same menu you’ll find an option to enable quick uploads to Facebook. With that enabled, use the more options menu in picture viewing mode and select Upload to Facebook. Watch as the picture goes directly to your Facebook photos, no questions asked.
Found these tips useful? Have some of your own? Let us know in comments.