My Mozart experience has been surprising. Windows Phone 7 as an OS is by far nowhere near as bad as the memories of Windows Mobile x.x - but it's no iOS. That's likely an unfair comparison though, as Apple have had 4 years to get their OS to this stage and this is Microsoft's first iteration of WP7. Sure, there are some rough edges, but over the past two weeks it grew on me.
I couldn't abide the onscreen keyboard. My fat thumbs struggled to type on it accurately, and while the autocorrect built into WP7 is very slick... re-editing a tweet or e-mail afterwards is not what I want to have to do. I prefer it to be right first time 99% of the time. A friend suggested I should just type fast and it will catch up - and it did, mostly. I still found it hard to be looking at the keyboard and having letters next to the letter I want show up in words when I didn't want them to. Oh, teh lulz.
The gaming component of this WP7 device was pretty cool. Lots of great games, lots of cool gamer points to collect. An absolutely productivity killer. But the cost... $4? $6.50? $9?!?! Sure, some of the games were great, but not that great. Being able to stick them as tiles on the main screen was a wonderful distraction, and made them easy to access.
Interacting with the device worked exactly as you'd expect it to. All the normal gestures are accounted for, and scrolling is very smooth and precise. It took me a little while to adapt from just up/down scrolling to including side-to-side scrolling once you're in the app. It does allow for some pretty compelling content to be displayed, & while the Telstra One app starts to hint at that there's a lot more that could be taken advantage of as apps develop.
The battery life sucked - no other way to say it. Advice from the Telstra team yesterday that a fix had been made to the Telstra network meant that we've only had 24 hours at best to really see if the change made a difference (and it needed to - with medium use I was getting, at best, 4-5 hours out of the handset - far from ideal). There has been a temporary fix, but that cruelled your ability to purchase apps from the Marketplace. If the battery/flipping APN issue can be resolved then this device will absolutely benefit. As will the owners of the device.
I saw nothing but goodness from Telstra's NextG network. Solid data bandwidth, no call dropouts, access everywhere. I didn't travel much out of either Brisbane or Sydney during the trial though during this time I didn't have a problem.
As a phone the Mozart works well. Clear call quality, easy enough to use phone component although frustrating when you open the phone part it didn't default to the keypad option, instead going to recent calls. Importantly it worked every time someone called me and I called them.
Overall it's a win. It's no iPhone, but it's a win. I've had some frustrations with apps, but that's not the device's fault. Everything you'd expect a smartphone to do, it does. If I hadn't bought an iPhone I likely would have picked up the HTC Mozart and used it. For the record, I have my quibbles with my iPhone & iOS, not unlike WP7. Given time, WP7 will be an absolutely competitive smartphone OS with a deep and rich app marketplace supporting it. Soon.
DISCLOSURE/DISCLAIMER: I have been given a HTC Mozart with Windows 7 Phone by Telstra free of charge to review. The comments expressed by me reflect my own user experience and personal opinion and are not made on behalf of Telstra. Or Microsoft. Or AuTechHeads. Or my wife, even.
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