# Wednesday, 17 November 2010

After using my LG Optimus Windows Phone 7 for a while now I’ve decided to come up with a little FAQ for the upcoming Windows Phone 7 release in Malaysia to help users get up to speed with their new device.

Is Windows Phone released jn Malaysia yet?
(Updated 13th Jan 2011) Windows Phone 7 phones are now available in Malaysia.

Do I need a Windows PC to use the phone?
No, you only need to install the Zune application on your PC if you wish to copy files from the phone to your pc for backup. (This is the only way to backup full sized pictures and video recording from your camera) or if you want to put media onto the phone

Can I use a Mac instead?
A Beta Mac client has been released, I personally am not sure how well it works though.

Is a Windows Live ID required to use the phone?
You don't NEED a Live ID to use the phone, but you do need one to make full use of the phone’s features.

Microsoft's official statement says that Marketplace and xbox live is not supported in Malaysia,how would a user go about getting apps for the phone then?
This is an extremely complicated topic, so complicated that it needs its own post so load this link in a new tab.

Is it TRUE that we can't use our own songs as ringtones?
Not only is that true, the included ringtones are poorly suited for the task of alerting you to pick up the phone. This should be addressed in a future update

So... No copy and paste?
Yup.. Also coming in a later update.

And no multitasking?
Yup, no multitasking right now. The developers will have to pull a few tricks to give you the illusion of multitasking. Sorta like the PalmOS in its early days.

Is the load speed for apps slow?
Depends on a lot of factors, what does the app do on startup? Does if hit the network before showing anything on the screen? Did the device manufacturer use fast storage RAM? Feels quite ok on my LG Optimus, not sure about the rest.

What's this about MicroSD cards being permanently tied to the phone after they are inserted?
As a form of DRM to protect the contents of the phone, and in the best interest of content developers the SD card will actually have its security features activated. Once active not many other devices would know how to deal with it. Therefore right now, after you insert a MicroSD into a Windows Phone 7 device. It’s possible that no other device can use it for now. Here’s a link that points to more info.

What kind of media files are supported?
Through the Zune application, the phone will play MP3, WMA and unprotected AAC. FLAC is not supported, nor is OGG. Videos in supported formats will be transcoded to WMV format to be viewable on the phone.

Update 18th November 2010 : Using the method described in this link you can gain access to the media folders and DIRECTLY copy any supported file into the device bypassing the transcoding process. So far the best format I can get it to play is MP4 container, 720P H.264, AAC audio. With the help of the method in the above link, it is now possible to view XVID files WITHOUT REENCODING using the method which I describe here.

Can I read PDF files?
Yes, there's a basic PDF reader made by Adobe in the marketplace. I call it BASIC since other than the fact that it can read PDF files (quite well actually, handling a 1000+ page book pretty well) it doesn’t have a last read position feature, doesn’t have an insert bookmark feature… heck it doesn’t even have a GO TO PAGE NUMBER X feature, damn that makes it VERY VERY unfeasible to read that 1000+ page book! But then since it’s a program… it can be upgraded

How do I copy files such as PDFs, Word, Excel files to my phone?
Microsoft's recommendations are to mail them to yourself, I figured out a better solution.

How do I copy said files out from the phone then?
Mail them to yourself.... Sorry I don't have a better idea for this one yet.

Can it handle Chinese SMS?
It can receive them just fine, but to send them you'll have to make use of an app called 'Chinese SMS' that's free costs a small sum on the marketplace for now.

Update 18th November 2010 : Program costs money now!

How capable is Internet Explorer on Windows Phone 7?
Yes, Windows Phone 7’s IE doesn’t support HTML5. I’d think most mobile HTML5 sites are mainly catered for the iOS devices anyway. In normal usage IE is quite capable, it has pretty decent Javascript support and can handle normal websites quite well. It’s not perfect but it’s definetly what you can call a modern mobile web browser.

No plugin support then?
Just ask the real question you want to ask!

No Flash support then?
Not yet, Adobe says it’s coming.. But whenever that is… it’s not now.

What’s this WiFi bug that’s been going around?
There’s no way to connect to a non SSID broadcasting WiFi access point in Windows Phone 7. Also, it can only get it’s IP configuration through DHCP so static IP are also a problem.

Is there a Windows Live Messenger app for WP7?
There is one in the Marketplace right now, but it’s not an official one by Microsoft. And based on all the bad reviews the app is getting, seems like it doesn’t work too well. But… there is a way to get a… sort of Live Messenger app if you really need to chat with someone. Browse to http://mim.live.com on your Windows Phone 7 device and you’ll gain access to the Mobile Web version of Live Messenger, which works pretty well even if you might have to end up refreshing the page manually to see if new chats come in.

Can Windows Phone 7 replace my GPS? (25th Nov 2010)
The Maps application included in the phone doesn’t work that well here in Malaysia yet so the answer is NO. But check out the details here.

Can I sync my stuff from Outlook to the phone? (Updated 8th Jan 2011)
The answer to the question is both YES and NO, while you CAN get information from Outlook to your phone. It's not as straight forward as with Active Sync previously and also right now there's no way to sync Tasks and ToDo items. For more details check out this KB Article. Important Note (8th Jan 2011) : There seems to be a bug where editing a contact information in Outlook… makes you appear offline to that contact if it's an IM user, I have no idea why this is happening, but you need to be mindful of this.

I Keep Accidentally Hitting The Windows Or Search Buttons And Losing Everything I Was Working On (3rd March 2011)
The scenario is this, you're playing Puzzle Quest 2 on your HD7 and then your thumb accidentally swipes pass the Windows button and the game goes away as the Start screen shows up and you lose your game progress, damn those capacitive buttons! What happen was that the absence of traditional multitasking, and the app's developer not being able to handle Windows Phone 7 tombstoning effectively would have caused the app to lose whatever it is you were working on.

This is especially problematic on devices that don't have PHYSICAL buttons cause it's so easy to accidentally press capacitive buttons. What I just found out is that if you quickly press BACK after hitting the Windows or Search buttons there's a chance that you can get back to the app BEFORE the OS kills it. Keyword here is QUICKLY, you have to be fast about it! It might not always work, but if something good to know.

That’s what I have right now, feel free to post any new questions for me to add to this list.


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