Android does Windows Phone 7 the right way with Infobar

infobar

We’ve seen some pretty interesting custom user interfaces for Android before, but the latest skin from Japan’s KDDI Infobar handset line shows a UI that may look a bit familiar. The handsets feature a Windows Phone 7 like UI, but offers up customization options Microsoft only wishes it would have thought up. They say that imitation is the greatest form of flattery, but what does it mean when the imitation is significantly better than the original?

The Windows Phone 7 similarities are immediately noticeable, with live tiles throughout the UI. You can rearrange these tiles just like you would with WP7, but this custom UI running on top of Android 2.3 will allow you to resize the tile, and allow it to act as a widget. The widget will show more relevant information for the application, so instead of a link to the weather application, you’ll see the actual forecast right on your homescreen.

Customization doesn’t stop there, though. You can add different sections to the screen, and add relevant applications to them. These “sections” can be minimized into bars (hence, Infobar), so you only have to look at the content you want to at any given time. Just like Windows Phone 7, you’ll able to theme the look and feel of the home tiles, but with many more options to choose from.

Infobar also looks to offer the standard Android homescreen by swiping the screen. The video demos a live wallpaper, and we wouldn’t be surprised if using Infobar is optional. Either way, the Android skin looks to be a step up from Windows Phone 7 in terms of functionality, as well as just being more fun to use. While we probably won’t see these handsets hit the states, we could see the skin ripped from the devices and ported over.

Check out the video below, and tell us what you think of the skin in the comments!

[Via:PaidContent]

  • mlewis

     Garbage

  • Bruce

     Can’t wait for XDA to get ahold of this.

  • Noreply

    Nah. nothing like the unique experience of WP7! Nice try (and copy) though Android! blake, note that some of the features demonstrated in the video that are really worth it are coming to WP7 this fall anyway and these guys managed to rip it off. How is this not further fragmenting the Andriod eco-system? How is it differentiating Andriod from WP7 in any unique way? The good thing is at least these people realize and believe now that Microsoft has a winning phone OS. 2013 – 2015, WP& will be the number 1 smart phone in the world!

    • http://profiles.google.com/poqbum Paul W

      Android IS different from WP7 because it’s open source. Going on how it looks doesn’t mean too much since you can change up an android phone to look and act like anything you’d want it to. Including WP7 phones, iphones, or just any combination of whatever you want.

  • http://twitter.com/darkriderdesign Damon Sanchez

    Yeah If you like Cluttered and Wacko for interface design.  I personally like the heck out of my  Windows Phone 7.  Microsoft really nailed the Design Typography and minimal design.  It’s funny because coming from a WP7 device it make all other interfaces look visual un sophisticated and clunky.

  • Agon

    now thats is cramped and ugly, trust me Windows Phone 7 UI hit the gold spot of simplicity and elegance. There is no need for static icons inside the boxes… we need whole “box” to be useful. Now thats exactly what WP7 does and Mango is gonna make it even better ;-) ground will tremble when Mango and Nokia will come out

    • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_F2G7NM2LGV2RMG27LT7XMXZQBI milo

      Agreed. While this shows some interesting aspects (like resizing tiles), the interface looks busy! WP7 is -as you said- about simplicity and elegance. And that’s what made me switch (I’ve been using the iPhone since 3G!). I tried Android, and I thought the interface was just messy (different size icons, thrown everywhere, no consistency in looks or feel of apps..); for me WP7 got the perfect mix of design and functionality, and with Mango bringing so many cool new features, it will be the OS to beat.

      • Anonymous

         I agree, the video looks terribly busy, but I think that was the intention. They want to show you just how much it can do all at once, when in reality a user’s setup would be much more refined. 

  • Anonymous

     I like WP7, but it’s just not as smart as other operating systems. It’s simple and sexy, but I’d go iPhone before I went with Windows Phone 7.

    • Anonymous

       LOL! This is one of the stupidest fucking posts I’ve ever read on the internet.

    • Noreply

      What makes you think its not as smart as other OSes? Are you stating an opinion? If that is the case, then its just your word against mine. I think WP7 is designed smartly to get everyday tasks done much quicker than iPhone. Whether it comes to taking pictures or checking emails or messages, WP7 UI facilitates these tasks faster and keeping the entire experience consistent and realistic. Even 3rd party apps on WP7 feel and look like they are integrated and consistently made. That tells a lot about the effort Microsoft has put in – not just with their OS but also to their eco-system as a whole.

    • Noreply

      What makes you think its not as smart as other OSes? Are you stating an opinion? If that is the case, then its just your word against mine. I think WP7 is designed smartly to get everyday tasks done much quicker than iPhone. Whether it comes to taking pictures or checking emails or messages, WP7 UI facilitates these tasks faster and keeping the entire experience consistent and realistic. Even 3rd party apps on WP7 feel and look like they are integrated and consistently made. That tells a lot about the effort Microsoft has put in – not just with their OS but also to their eco-system as a whole.

    • http://www.facebook.com/PistolPat713 Michael Patrick

      Not looking to good, Mr. Blake. To say Android did Windows Phone right is VERY misleading; KDDI did the work. Windows Phone is designed to get you to your destination swiftly. This knock-off looks like an Alpha stage of Windows Phone or a custom ROM for WM6.5. There is so much going on.

  • Anonymous

     I like WP7, but it’s just not as smart as other operating systems. It’s simple and sexy, but I’d go iPhone before I went with Windows Phone 7.

  • Anonymous

    This doesn’t do WP7 the right way. WP7 did it the right way.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=624101626 Remy Beauregard Lebeau

    That interface looks horrible! How is it they did WP7 right?   Windows Phone 7 live tiles are great! Man why did I even bother reading this???!!??

  • tonywlee

    This is f..in garbage… Trash… Lol… This is the stupidest S… Ive ever seen.. Hilarious… 

  • Shenzhen2112

     *snicker
    Now I know why this is the fist time I’ve even visited this site; way off on your critique of this yawn-able Android skin.

    As mentioned by others, WP7 is elegant, simple, easy-to-use, and feature-packed.

    Be prepared for others to try and emulate (poorly) the UX of WP7 in the near future. 

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