Going back to windows mobile


So in Jan i moved from Lumia 950 to Motorola Z2. When I first set it up, I put on a few apps and understood this was the world I was missing – the app gap. Z2 has it’s mods which are great and the phone itself is very slim. It’s now on Android 8, for whatever that’s worth.

Since then I have spent a long time trying to tune the android experience down to something that does not frustrate me. Namely built-in ads, pop-ups, notification crazies, permissions overload, tons of apps I can’t get rid of but rather disable. Additionally because the Z2 has USB C I assumed I could use that to stream movies to a screen, but alas Motorola have not put that feature in. The most frustrating thing is the lock screen and finger print reader. I used to run a phone without any kind of lock screen security, but android will not allow you to setup the play store with setting up security which is a good thing I suppose. I set up the finger prints and use multiple finger scans for my main finger, but it only seems to last a week or two, and gets so unreliable I always fall back to the pattern. Apparently this is quite common for people with generally dry skin.

But it just infuriates me all the time, I don’t have the time to track and trace everything. The amount of times it has made a notification sound and disturbed my work only to find that goggle has pushed a notification for e.g the weather or some play store advert, means I have to stop work or dinner and go in and check app settings and remove permissions for notifications. Some really basic functionally is missing, like perhaps a little label over the icon to say number of unread messages. And I just don’t use the apps.

I picked the Lumia 950 out of the draw and it still runs flawlessly. It’s begging me to move back. Oh yeah and windows hello is suddenly looking quite useful.

Comments (13)

13 responses to “Going back to windows mobile”

  1. PeterC

    Mate - coming from win 10 mob android is like the needy child from hell!!!! Just switch every notification of and then just add what you want in.

    When I finally decided to switch out of Win 10 mobile last xmas it was awful. I bought a OnePlus 5T and used that - but like you found the switch seriously stressful. Its funny how "brain muscle memory" changes can be so disruptive isn't it. Its like fighting addictions. (something I do know a lot about).

    I used the OP5T till spring but, I just couldnt take it any more, especially all the "bipiddy bonging" going on whilst I'd be watching TV or sport etc - and I relented and bought an iphone 8 (and ipad). To my surprise the lack of "ios customisation" which many don't like actually worked for me to begin with but the loopy arsed way settings worked compared to Win/Android drove me bonkers.

    I had already sold my OP5T by this time but in a day of utter iPhone rage (yes customisation related) I ended up buying my old OP5T back from the local tech exchange shop. So now ive got my old Lumia 950 xl, OnePlus 5T and an iPhone 8.

    I switch my 950 xl on every 10 days and update/sync and *sigh* a lot. I keep the One Plus 5T set up with a lot of MS apps and launcher to see how MS is doing/coping without a mobile platform (not well in my assessment), and my daily driver is the iPhone 8.

    Yes I am sad. But hopefully by summers end I will have convinced myself to ditch the OP5T (again) and send the Lumias (I forgot to mention my old 950 and 640) to the tech exchange graveyard. I laugh at myself - I urge you to avoid switching back to the Lumia as youll end up in mobile no-mans land like I was for most of this year. It can be an expensive place to be.

  2. Rick Foux

    It really sucks that the only other options are Android and iOS. I have an old Lumia 640 that sits in a drawer and tempts me on a regular basis, but with Windows Mobile basically being a corpse now I just can't bring myself to go back.

  3. ommoran

    The thing is, you are blaming the OS and not what you need to blame - the closed app gap.

    You got no notifications on your Windows Mobile phone because the apps either weren't there, or were several iterations behind their Android and iOS counterparts. Android isn't the only needy brat, iOS is too - and it isn't the OS, it is the apps themselves.

    Every app wants your permission to the camera/contacts/firstborn/banking information/etc etc. They want to send you notifications. I don't give a damn if someone has made a move in Words with friends, nor do I really care about one of my FB contacts posting a new picture. They aren't notifications per se, they are a means for the app to draw you back in and spend time in their app. It's all about the amount of time you spend with eyeballs remotely near that app's advertisers.

    I can't speak to the Z2. I had a Samsung Galaxy S6 and there weren't ads cooked into the OS. Every app. had ads, but I used Firefox and and adblocker and the web was ok. I'm now on iOS and the experience is about the same.

    I too miss Windows Mobile, but it's gone. I stuck with it until early 2016, and they announced it was done, and so was I. An actual banking app was wonderful. Everything else is basically gravy. I get that you feel it sucks. You need to spend the time to get it all under control.

  4. Bats

    This is funny. It's as if I am reading someone saying, "Gosh...I hate living in a mansion. I want to go back to the farm!" Kinda reminds me of the old tv show Green Acres.

    You do know (but you probably don't) there is a DO NOT DISTURB function on your phone...right? I use this ALL THE TIME at work and for that 1 hour I am at Sunday Mass. Second, you can remove the notification by simply long pressing the icon and tapping "App Info" and removing the notification function for that particular app.

    As for the fingerprint reader, that's not Android's fault. That's Motorola's or YOURS. People who are not used to fingerprint readers often place their finger on the scanner either to hard or to lightly. It's either that or Motorola fingerprint sensor isn't that good. How do you know it's quite common for dry skin people, with regards to finger print scanner? I have dry skin too. The problem with your statement is that it, according to you, it works for a week or two. Then it doesn't? It makes no sense.

    As for "basic" functionality.....are you kidding? It's an Android! It has all the functionality under the sun. If Google or Motorola doesn't provide it, than you can download it from the Play Store. For me, I don't need it because I am so used to all notifications from the notification bar. If you need, then search and download from the Play Store. It's there.

    Look, if you are seriously considering going back to Lumia 950, that's your choice. However, just do it for the right reasons. I feel that all your reasons to go back to the Lumia are no good. The way how I see it, you simply don't know how to use your phone or you don't want to try.

    To be honest, I blame Paul Thurrott for this. This user, TEDZIO, should have known about all this. HE THINKS that this is an Android problem. when this clearly COULD BE (stress "could be") a manufacturer issue. I don't have any problems with any of his issues with my Pixel 2 XL and previously my Pixel XL, and the Nexus 6P. I did have a problem with my Galaxy Note 4 and Droid X and X2, prior to use of the Nexus 6P. Instead of educating the patrons of this site about Android, people are being left to believe about other things. For example, despite the fact, Thurrott constantly raves about the technological specs and aesthetics of the latest Samsung Galaxy phones, he should be using that phone to report on it's functionality with Android. As a former Galaxy user, it's like having two operating systems. For a moderate to power user, chances are there will be degradation over time. The fact of the matter is, Windows Phone is dead. Xbox has failed. Cortana has failed. Everything Microsoft has done has failed. I don't even know if Microsoft can succeed in CLOUD. Being in a lead in the CLOUD race means nothing. This is not the 80's and 90's where Microsoft has skated through the tech industry, there are serious challengers here. Everytime Microsoft has face a challenge, they have failed in this new era of tech computing. My point being is this, ..... this site (IMO) needs to move away from Windows and Microsoft in general and cover the more industry leading products and services in the industry. That's not Microsoft and will never be it. Thurrott is a great writer and he's wasting his time focusing on Microsoft. He shifted his time other things,...better things....people like TEDZIO would be better educated with stuff like this and would not have to go back to the smartphone equivalent of the rotary phone. Well,...at least the rotary phone was loved.

    • bigfire

      In reply to Bats:

      Ads can come as part of getting apps. A given app can pop up a self-promotion notification, and I have quite a few that have done that, even though I'm typically downloading mainstream Android apps. For some of the apps, you literally can't turn off the notification (typically Samsung, natch). For others, you can turn off the nonsense advertising, but then you're also turning off the notifications that you want from that app.

      I have spent a long time customizing my Android experience to stop unwanted system apps (both Google and Samsung) and fighting notifications. I've even had the phone give off a sound notification and, when I looked, saw no new notification. Still haven't fixed that one.

      I just sent a Note 8 off to my Mom to evaluate (as I'm booting her off the Windows platform, so she's choosing between it and iOS). I spent hours customizing everything to make it as simple and non-irritating as possible, and on a Samsung phone, that ain't no easy task!

      Windows phone failed, partially because app makers detested its goal of putting your information in front of you, and the apps out of your way. Good for the user, not so great for app makers trying to push ads in front of you.

      And what is up with the terrible limited functionality of the on-screen display? Why can't Samsung/Google look at the Windows Phone example and put actual useful information on that giant, unused display?

      Random side note - I've had the Note 8 since it came out, and I've seen none of the degradation/android rot I've heard about so many times. Your mileage may vary.

  5. Sprtfan

    Notifications took a while for me to get under control when I first switch and was a hassle. One of the issue I have now is that the a notification that I had turned off at one points gets turned back on. I'm assuming it is after and update?

    Something that you might find funny is that my wife keeps here Icon and her Samsung S7 on her most of the times. She hates the calendar on Android and keeps the Icon around for Calendar live tile and email. She uses the Samsung for everything else but would have probably been has happy sticking with the Icon. I made her switch a few years back and told her she'd get used to it. Maybe she keeps the Icon around just to prove me wrong lol.

  6. jules_wombat

    Never left, still running my Lumia 650 as personal phone, because bluntly, (IMHO) it remains the most attractive user interface. Not particularly missing any 'essential' apps. My Android phones are just for development and testing, and are not appealing user devices.

  7. gregsedwards

    Good on ya, mate. I've considered doing exactly the same thing since moving to iPhone in January.

    The iPhone has some nice advantages over my Lumia 950, but nothing that I'd call a deal breaker. Aside from the obvious app ecosystem, I really like iOS' ability to copy/paste images between apps. The Lumia 950's hardware was light years better than the iPhone (admittedly, I'm using an iPhone 6s, but it's from roughly the same era, so I think that's a pretty fair apples-to-apples comparison...I'm using the latest iOS on it). The Lumia camera is better, the battery life is better, the OS is cleaner. The iPhone probably has a better looking display, but the Lumia's display is a hair bigger. The iPhone has Touch ID, but the Lumia has Windows Hello.

    I've discovered that by-and-large, most apps are just nonsense that I don't particularly need, and for those that I do, there's generally a pretty good web-based equivalent available. Fewer apps means better battery life, and less concern about privacy issues. All of those things I assumed the rest of the world was doing without me...turns out, they're not really doing most of them, either. My friends and family don't really use most of those iMessage features; we message each other of course, but nothing we couldn't do with traditional SMS. We don't FaceTime. We don't share iTunes purchases. We don't AirDrop things to each other. Probably the biggest advantage of using iPhone is that now I can share a charger with my wife.

    Mostly, it's just nice that I don't get crap from everyone for "clinging to a dying platform" anymore. But you know, what? Who gives a crap?! Use the device you enjoy and feel gives you the best experience. ✊

  8. nicholas_kathrein

    I got to say that if you have ads on your Android phone you've made some bad decisions.

    1. Some budget phones sell with cheaper prices by having ads built in. I've heard of this on some special low cost phones bought through Amazon. Good quality mid range and up phones don't do this. Also the finger printer scanner is great on mid range phones. My works for me 99% of the time. If you have a skin condition that really makes your skin peal off then no finger print scanner will work.
    2. Some free apps you installed have ads. You really need to do google searches for "best Android app for ..." the thing you need. Example "best Android apps for banking". Google Play has millions of apps and many websites pay people to review them and find the best apps that don't advertise to you. Most are free and some have charges. Free apps have a higher chance of advertising to you to make money to pay for the app.
  9. NextWithoutFor

    LOL. You'll be back to a living mobile os soon!

  10. Lauren Glenn

    OK, but do the voice features still work for Win10 Mobile? I know I picked up a Win7 phone for $16 :) and none of the voice services work because they all require Microsoft's services which they turned off.

  11. Minke

    Just star your favorite contacts, turn on Do Not Disturb, and select to let only your favorite contacts, alarms, and maybe your own events and reminders break through. Just leave it set like that all the time. I figure if a call is important it will either be from my selected favorites and/or they will leave a message. This also eliminates 99% of junk calls. My Google Pixel 2 set like this does not beep, ring, flash, or anything for any app except for my alarms, favorites, and personal reminders. By comparison, the flipping, spinning, flashing Windows Phone tiles could make you seasick. Try something like the Evie Launcher and you can strip down your homescreen to nothing but a beautiful and serene image and only the most essential apps and icons.