Microsoft Denmark was having a special event in their offices since they have just moved to a new building North of Copenhagen. So I played with some devices with prototype text all over them and even the interchangeable covers by Mozo. Funnily enough I crashed the phone twice while taking photos with the camera app, but the Microsoft guy there insisted that they were running earlier builds of Windows 10.
To be honest, I liked both phones better without the Mozo covers. They hide the Microsoft logo from the back (which feels like some sort of metal engraving) and they add a metal edge around the edges that, while nice in photos, somehow it just didn’t feel “expensive” in my hand. Maybe it’s just because I’m used to playing around a lot with a Samsung Galaxy S5 at work and I think the fake metal edges give it a ridiculously cheap feel. But to be honest, I’m not sure if the Mozo cases are real metal or just painted plastic. Here’s a couple of photos: Image Image
As for the phones themselves, the OS felt pretty fluid. There were several apps preinstalled for Denmark, and those would run quite fast and smooth. Besides the camera issues, I never noticed any hiccups while using the phone. The camera would open up super fast. It’s just that upon taking a photo, the entire phone would crash and I had to press and hold the power button to restart it.
One of the 950 devices was connected to the Display Dock. Both mouse and keyboard were connected via bluetooth however (both an Arc Touch mouse and the Foldable Universal Keyboard from Microsoft). I was VERY amazed at how well Continuum works. Edge was running super fast and smooth on the big screen, with virtually zero differences with the desktop version of Edge. I tried loading my company’s website, which has video moving in the background and parallax scrolling and it worked great nevertheless! I also opened up Word, Excel and Powerpoint. Powerpoint in particular had a presentation ready full of pictures, transitions and notes. I can see this being super extremely useful for me at least, since I give plenty of presentations. Speaking of which, you can also connect to a screen wirelessly as long as it supports Miracast (or it has a Miracast dongle like Microsoft’s own wireless display receiver). A photo of Continuum with the Powerpoint presentation.
Overall, I can see a lot of potential in Continuum, specially if more Universal apps keep showing up that expand to use the whole screen. Oh and it was pretty nice how you could turn the phone into a virtual touchpad if you wanted to, by tapping on the top bar (that says “Connected to external TV”).
I compared the phone with my current Lumia 930. It is a tiny little bit bigger, which concerns me a bit. The screen IS bigger, sure, but you do get the on-screen menu buttons now. You can hide them with a swipe, but I’m still not entirely convinced. Maybe I’m just from an old generation that likes their silly buttons outside of the screen :P The XL was surprisingly not that much bigger than the standard 950, and for a moment I even considered buying the XL instead of the normal one. Then I realized that in no way do I need the XL’s bigger screen and that it’s simply going to get in the way for me. I use the phone with one hand a lot as I commute and drink coffee, and the XL simply won’t cut it, even with the “hold down the Windows button to move the screen down” function. Also, I like my pockets not to look like I have a DVD case in my pocket, thank you very much ;) (Yeah, I know that this entire paragraph is very subjective. I’m just the kind of person who wishes phones had stopped becoming bigger already).
Other than that… uhm…. I don’t know. I guess you can ask me any questions and I’ll reply with the best of my knowledge from my limited time with the phones :P (Again, it was over 2 hours, so I think it’s at least informative enough).
I’ll leave you with a fun fact: Microsoft Denmark has lots of meeting rooms, each one with different furniture. One of them had swings instead of chairs. Seriously. This is me swinging around like a little kid.