I STILL REMEMBER THE DAY that I bought my first cell phone. The year was 1995. I was selling computers for a retail store chain that was big in Canada, but just starting to expand into the United States. The phone I bought was made by NEC and I thought it was the coolest phone in the world. Back then all phones did was, well, act like phones. You could make an outgoing call, you could accept an incoming call, and that was it. There was no voice mail, no text messaging, no gaming.

Around 2002 I bought a Siemens SX51 Pocket PC. I thought it was the coolest phone in the world. It had mobile versions of Microsoft Word, Excel, and Access. It had a contact manager. It had a touch screen with a stylus, and most importantly, it had Solitaire. It had some really cool features, but it also had some really bad flaws. Memory management was so bad the device had to be rebooted several times a day. Battery life was poor, and when the battery finally wore out, you couldn't replace it because it was hardwired to the phone. Still, in spite of all its flaws, I loved that phone.

In 2008, Microsoft did a big reboot in its mobile device division. Windows Phone 7 was a new way of thinking for Microsoft's Entertainment and Devices division. The user interface was a radical departure from any previous version of Windows Phone. The hardware requirements imposed on the manufacturers of the phones were more stringent. Some of the biggest changes came in the area of software development for the ...

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