There are minimum requirements for phone manufacturers to adhere if they want to develop a Windows Phone 7. These include:-
- Capacitive WVGA multi-touch display (800×480 pixel resolution)
- 1GHz or higher processor
- DirectX9 rendering-capable GPU
- 256MB RAM with at least 8GB flash memory
- 5-megapixel camera with LED flash
- Integrated FM radio tuner
- Accelerometer with compass, ambient light sensor, proximity sensor and Assisted GPS
- Six dedicated hardware buttons – back, Start, search, camera, power/sleep and volume up/down
The Back, Start and Search buttons are below the display
This means that almost all the Windows Phone 7 on the market will look alike aesthetically including the internal hardware specifications and most features. But standardization can be a good thing too, since the apps coded are sure to work on any Windows Phone 7, unlike the Android apps which are either platform version dependent or have to meet specific hardware requirements.
Instead of the standard Start menu, Microsoft has implemented the “Tiles” layout on the Start screen. When you press the Start button, this is the screen you will be brought to. You can customize the layout as well as the color of the Tiles, the background color (only black or white), or choose to delete Tiles on the Start screen. If there is a notification like a new message or email that arrives in your inbox, the Tile will display it accordingly.
If you have accidentally deleted a Tile or that you need to add more to the Start screen, simply flick your finger across the display (right to left) to bring out the entire list of Tiles available. Note that some Tiles are longer like Calendar and People.
“Hubs” are related content from the web, applications and services in a single view, and there are altogether six such Hubs on the Windows Phone 7 – People, Picture, Games, Music & Videos, Marketplace and Office.
The People Hub allows you to add your friends from Windows Live, Facebook and others, link them together as well as view their updated status. But you can’t access their photo albums or see the videos/links they posted as the feature isn’t available. You may need a dedicated Facebook app or go to the phone’s web browser to view instead.