WP7 Windows Phone 7 Wish List

Nokia has recently released the Lumia 900 which is the WP7 flagship model at a great price. I had some time to play with it and overall the hardware looks and feels solid. However, I have a few complaints such as no memory card slot, no battery replacement, or the ability to change the Sim card without some sort of tool. On the software front, the OS has not changed much since I sold my Samsung Focus last year.

Windows Phone 7 has been in the market more than a year and has failed to steal the spotlight from Android and iPhone. To most power users, it still does not feel like a smart phone but more like an improvement from a feature phone. I am going to list several things I wish WP7 had but will probably not materialize until WP8 during the 2012 holiday season and very likely will never be on a Lumia 900.

  1. Microsoft is pushing the cloud everywhere and WP7 is not the exception. You got 20GB available in your SkyDrive. Therefore, they decided to drop support for memory card slots. If it is up to Microsoft you are pretty much stuck with whatever memory came with your phone. The Samsung Focus came with an option to install one but it required formatting the phone and you would never be able to take it out without having to reformat.  With Micro SD card prices constantly going down and increasing in size, it makes me sad that WP7 does not have this option.
  2. This one is probably more for Audiophiles but it is not possible to store music in Lossless formats on a WP7 phone. On my Zune HD, I was able to store WMA Lossless songs. However, WP7 devices will downconvert your music files to a WMA Lossy codec when trying to copy Lossless files to it. Again, this is probably a space concern. Maybe they don’t want you downloading big files from the cloud. iPhones let you use ALAC and Androids and Blackberries will even let you play FLAC files. Continue reading “WP7 Windows Phone 7 Wish List”

Simple way to customize pushpins in Bing Maps for WP7

Having trouble finding a quick and simple way to customize and add images to pushpins? I came up with the following.

The stardard pushpin looks pretty bad, as you can see, it is just a black square with a pointing arrow.

The easiest way to get rid of it is to set the template of your pushpin to null.

Pushpin myPushpin = new Pushpin();
myPushpin.Template = null;

Continue reading “Simple way to customize pushpins in Bing Maps for WP7”

Open Websites and Emails from a Windows Phone 7 Silverlight App

First,  make sure to reference the Microsoft.Phone.Tasks Library

In your XAML you can add a HyperlinkButton with a click even like this:

<HyperlinkButton x:Name="Email" Content="email@domain.com" Click="Email_Click"/>

Then use the EmailComposeTask class to bring up the mail client.

private void Email_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
EmailComposeTask email = new EmailComposeTask();
email.To = "email@domain.com";
email.Subject = "Thanks";

In a similar manner, you instantiate WebBrowserTask to bring up the browser with the provided link

private void MyBlog_Click(object sender, RoutedEventArgs e)
WebBrowserTask web = new WebBrowserTask();
web.URL = "http://chrisrios.com";

Continue reading “Open Websites and Emails from a Windows Phone 7 Silverlight App”