Microsoft had a little thing recently all about Windows Hardware. I don't normally watch these things.
As a guy who presents and speaks for a living, it's tough for me to watch other people do that — for a couple of reasons. Number one, because I'm constantly critiquing them and not paying attention.
Number two, it's just tough.
I often feel like they could just cut to the chase and I could move on. But last week I put the Microsoft Hardware Announcement stream on.
I've got about 47, roughly, LCD's pointing in my general direction right now, one of them is a 40-inch that hangs on the wall. Anyway, it was really cool.
What I Learned
I learned a lot of fun stuff so I'm glad that I watched it.
One of the things I learned is that I want to present like Panos Panay, (the corporate vice president for Surface Computing at Microsoft.)
He was the guy that did most of the presenting. I'm normally looking down at people who are presenting, thinking how much they suck. But when it's somebody like Panos, it was great.
I took a lot away from it just as a presenter, on how to do presenting better. That was an unintended thing, because the event was all about hardware.
I'm not going to cover all of it to a great degree but there were a few things that interested me.
Phoning Home Again
One of the things was the new Lumias. As you may know, I recently moved over to Android.
Now I love Windows phone, mobile or Windows 10 for phone, or whatever they're called. I love the OS.
The OS is great. I've said it before and I'll say it again — everything that Android does that Windows phone also does, Windows phone does better. That has not changed.
But there are just no apps. You really can't use the Windows 10 phone for anything and that is really frustrating, and it's the thing that made me move away. But I want it to succeed.
I want Microsoft and Windows Phone to succeed. So I was very excited about that.
They announced two new lines of phones, the 950 and the 950 XL, both beautiful pieces of hardware. They looked a lot of fun. They had Windows 10 on them and the OS looked really good.
They have a 20 MP camera, with like three flashes to prevent red-eye and things like that. They will take 4K video, which is amazing.
They have a Hexacore, which I think means six cores. This processor runs so hot that it's liquid cooled. What could possibly go wrong with a liquid cooled processor in your phone-- in your pocket?
Yes, what could possibly go wrong.
The phone's have 3 GB RAM, and 34G of internal storage. They also support Micro-SD cards, and Panos made a reference to the fact that when the 1TB Micro-SD cards come out, these phones will support them.
That's pretty cool. They have a USB-C type connector on them and that does a couple of things. First, it allows fast charge.
I think what he said is it will charge the battery up to 80 percent in 30 minutes or less, so that was pretty cool.
You know in the time you order a pizza, and your pizza gets there your phone is charged, very handy.
The other thing it has is they said it has two sets of antennas, and the phone will figure out which one works better for you depending on how you're holding it and where the cellular antennas are. So there's none of those problems like with the old iPads where you're holding it wrong.
There's a bunch of other stuff but those are the things that grabbed me.
Size Matters Here
So, the 950 is the smaller of the two, it's got a 5.2inch screen, and it is 2560x1400, so it's a super hi-resolution screen. It's got an AMOLED screen. It has glance. Oh my God, do I miss glance.
I miss glance so much it hurts. When a phone has the glance thing, when the phone is dimmed and you pull it out of your pocket, it just tells you the time and your email. Ugh, I miss glance.
Glance if you're out there, you can call me, too.
So, it's got that, and again yeah 5.2 inch screen and it's going to reach out for $550 bucks when it comes out.
The 950 XL, the big brother, has a 5.7 inch screen. I think the same resolution but I'm not sure. And, that one will be $650 when it comes out.
Now, I don't remember when they're going to come out, it's going to be like, end of this month, next month something like that. But all in all it was very cool.
Continuing On …
They talked a little bit about a thing called Continuum.
Continuum is a thing where you'll be able to use your phone and use it like a phone, and then hook it up to a dock and use it like a computer.
They had another guy Bryan Roper (marketing manager at Microsoft) explain this. So there's a $99 dollar adaptor that plugs into the USBC port on your phone, and it gives you three full size USB jacks, a display port adaptor and an HDMI adaptor.
And then your phone becomes a computer. The example that he used, which was pretty cool, was that he was out there traveling, and his boss sent him a text that said "You need to work on this document Pronto, Stat" and, so he had his phone and he just connected it and the Windows 10 desktop showed up.
When he hit the start button, on the desktop, he got his phone start screen, all the same live tiles and all that kind of stuff.
He clicked the text message, the text message had a URL in it, he clicked that and it brought up a web page that had a Power Point Online presentation.
So he was able to bring that up on his phone and it was pretty cool, and then he jumped into his email on his phone, and it was all formatted for the machine. You know it looked like a computer rendition of Power Point, not a phone rendition that had just been blown up.
So, then, he had his email open, goes over to his phone, taps the live tile on his phone, the email on his screen went away. He went into more detail, but overall it looked really really cool.
As a guy that presents in front of crowds, this kind of thing is amazing to me. I imagine being able to walk into a room with this Continuum adaptor and my phone, plug in, and have my clicker or keyboard and present right off of that. I wouldn’t have to lug around all of the extra stuff.
The adaptor is $99 dollars, which is amazing, too. So, can't wait to see how that all turns out when it comes out.
I Actually Have More to Say
Title image by Teodor Bjerrang