Jamie Thomson

Thoughts, about stuff

Windows Phone Feature Suggestions

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The Windows Phone team have requested that customers submit ideas for the next version of Windows Phone in their blog post Have a new Windows Phone feature idea? Try Suggestion Box. I’ve taken them at their word and submitted the following suggestions, I’d appreciate you clicking through and voting them up if you think they are worthy:

Read/Write calendar API

The calendar application needs to be opened up as a hub so that other applications can publish their wares into it.

For instance”. I use an app called “My Trips” which shows me my itineraries from TripIt.com. Giving “My Trips” the ability to publish into my calendar would be much more useful because I can see those itineraries alongside everything else that I have in my calendar.

Allow apps to publish to the map app

The map app should have the ability to display content from other apps.

There are many services today that provide location specific data (Foursquare & Flickr are two such examples). On Windows Phone 7 right now there is no way to present location-centric information from multiple data sources (i.e. apps) in a single place.

Apps would be able to publish information that is relevant to the user’s current location into this Location hub in much the same way that (e.g.) the SmugMug app currently publishes photos into the pictures hub. I can think of many apps, or types of apps, that could take advantage of this:

* Foursquare could publish check-ins
* Twitter could publish geo-tagged tweets
* Retailers could publish special offers (“Come to our store on Oxford Street in the next 10 minutes with your Windows Phone and receive a discount”)
* London Underground could publish an overlay of the tube network, including real-time train information
* Event sites like Eventful, Elmcity and Upcoming could publish local events
* OpenTable (who already have an app in the Windows Phone marketplace) could publish information about nearby restaurants
* Weather apps could overlay current or future weather conditions
* Transport for London could publish up-to-the-minute information about their “boris bikes” such as which stations currently have bikes available
* Your friends could share their location which could get published into the hub
* Apps that provide data about public amenities (letter boxes, public toilets, post offices etc…) could overlay that information on the Location hub

Share Contracts

Bring Windows 8 Contracts to Windows Phone

Windows 8 is introducing Share and Search contracts. Please bring these to the phone as well (especially Share).

At the very least this would be a way to provide screenshots. Better than that though would be the ability to move data fro app to app. Here’s some random ideas I’ve just thought of:
*Foursquare could share a collection of checkins to the Map app which would then display them
*British Airways app could share flight details to the Calendar app
*SkyDrive browser in office hub could share a photo with the Flickr app
*A news site could share an article with OneNote so that we can store a copy of it
*if I see a cool video on a Video browsing app i could share a link to it to a Twitter app

Loads of possibilities I’m sure

Search Office documents

Allow us to search the contents of office docs on the phone, not just filenames

Settings icon on right hand side of Start Screen

The right-hand side of the Start Screen is currently bare. Why not put the link to “Settings” in there?

Perhaps you could even put the same notifications about unread emails/messages that appear on the lock screen into that empty space too. That would save having to have those tiles pinned to the Start Screen.


Written by Jamiet

September 28, 2011 at 8:12 pm

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