I used Windowsphone exclusively from about 2010 to just a few months ago, My last Lumia 950 got sold on ebay and my regular device is a Nokia 7 Plus. I used Cortana and Bing Maps on Windowsphone and liked the experience of live tiles. Like many people I hate the “grid of icons” experience of both Android and IOS. However, there is no choice.
As a British user of Cortana I was used to it being less functional than the USA. Until reasonably recently it didn’t understand my route to work because I travel by bus rather than drive. The mapping with Bing was well behind Google. It did the job but often put things on the wrong side of the street etc. With both products I clicked ferociously at the feedback button to correct map errors and improve the experience. I didn’t see much change myself but you can always hope. Suffice to say things were sub-optimal but improving over time.
Once on Android I put the Microsoft Launcher on and added Cortana as the default assistant. Despite Cortana’s lacklustre performance in general it could read my Outlook appointments and work with my PC. So there was reason to standardise. Cortana isn’t as good. It is really just a voice web search and not a very good one. It is quicker to search on the command line. I could go on with it still not understanding my journey to work but it seems Google Maps does. After a couple of trips it suggests my bus route and tells me about delays. I find this to be extraordinary given that Microsoft is now focused on AI and machine learning. How come Cortana didn’t know this stuff?
Gradually, on Android, I have found Cortana not to be improving but a step backwards from Windowsphone. The application this week has taken three presses to start. Sometimes it doesn’t start at all unless I restart the phone.
Google Assistant has now gone back on. Cortana is still there in the launcher but demoted.
As Microsoft is now talking about “Modern Life” consumers I reflect on the fact that my modern life outside home and work depends on information on my mobile. Usually travel, commuting, payments, search, directions, mapping and photos. I find myself drifting towards Google services that just seem to be doing these things better.
Thinking about Microsoft’s “Modern Life” for consumer. My current feeling is that presently the services consumers use are not the services Microsoft is focusing on. In fact they have slowed development in almost all of them to the point in which consumers have to make extra effort to use less useful services if they want to use Microsoft products on mobile.
If they want to do “Modern Life” then there is a lot of work to do.
<p>LOL…Microsoft is talking about Modern Life? Boy…that's rich!</p><p><br></p><p>For me, I am living a modern life….and Google is a big part of it. We all want that modern life, but no company can offer it except for Google. In terms of privacy and Google, all of that can be wiped away with press of a button, so that's not an issue for me. It's like hiring an personal (human) assistant. He or she is going to know me personally, know what coffee I like, and know all the information that I need to know, before I ask it. </p><p><br></p><p>I wake up in the morning to the alarm clock on my Pixel 2 XL. I take a shower, then ask say "Hey Google….Good Morning." Google then tells me what the weather is for the day, the traffic to work, and some news." As I get ready for work, I say "Hey Google play the News Channel on (Nvidia Shield Pro) Chromecast Name. Then I say, "Hey Google, let me speak to Mercedes Me." Through that Mercedes Benz app on my Google Home, I make it start my car. Once I am in the car I play Podcast. BTW, I ditched Pocket Casts for the new Google Podcast player. When I am at work I have my phone handy and nearby, but when it's not, I have my Wear OS watch on my wrist to notify me of any incoming calls or text messages. Then, at times, I take the Panera App and order lunch and pay with Google Pay, so when I go to Panera, all I would have to do is pickup my bag that has my name on it and go back to the office. While I am eating lunch, I am catching up on some tv shows on my phone using Youtube TV. Sometimes I'll rent a movie and watch it work and if I can't finish it, I'll just finish at home on the big screen. Sometimes, after work, I'll stop off at the 7-11 to buy a snack, which I'll pay using my phone via tap using Google Pay. LOL…the stares I get from people when they see me doing this….LOL. I'll be honest, I always try to pay for stuff using Google Pay. It's easy, quick, I think it's safe to do, and it's fun astonishing people behind you in the line at the cash register. Then I go to my parents house to see if they are ok. I set their house up with alot of smart home devices, so they and I can have control their consumption of energy. Sometimes my parents leave their lights on and forget to turn it off. Thanks to their Google Home Minis and Amazon Echo's, turning off is as simple as telling either the Google Assistant or Alexa to turn the lights off. When I come home, (say during the winter) my lights are turned on and are programmed to turn off at 10pm at night for the exception of two light bulbs, where they are supposed to remain throughout the night but at 1% dimmness. Then I watch TV on Youtube TV or Youtube or Netflix or ….cough……Terrarium…..cough….Kodi….whatever…..until I fall asleep. Then, I start the whole cycle all over again.</p><p><br></p><p>I think it's safe to say, that I lead a modern life.</p><p><br></p><p>Ya know what I want to try next? Ordering stuff from Amazon and having it delivered to the trunk of my car. They have that service and my car is "compatible" with it. </p>
<p>I think the whole "modern life" thing is just BS not matter what vendor talks about it.</p>
<p><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">>>>>>>>>Thinking about Microsoft’s “Modern Life” for consumer. My current feeling is that presently the services consumers use are not the services Microsoft is focusing on. </span></p><p><br></p><p><span style="color: rgb(0, 0, 0);">Hi ponsaelius, top post and the line above just about sums up Microsoft right now for me. It’s really sad to see. Such a shame. </span></p>