Print 23 comment(s) - last by blueboy09.. on Mar 19 at 9:18 PM

Microsoft may be turning its back on copy and paste right now, but says that there just wasn't enough time to have it in place for launch

Microsoft's decision not include true multitasking or copy/paste on shipping version of Windows Phone 7 Series have sparked quite a bit of discussion around the internet in the past few days. The copy/paste drama has been an especially thorny topic. On the one side, you have people saying that it's a travesty considering that Apple, Palm, RIM, and Google support the feature. On the other side, you have people saying that it isn't a big deal and that copy/paste should be relegated to the desktop/notebook realm.

In fact, previous reports suggest that Microsoft agrees with the latter group. Microsoft's Todd Brix says that copy/paste just isn't a big deal to the general consumer. Brix said that the the lack of copy/paste is a "conscious decision" and that “smart linking” (clickable web address, phone numbers, email address, etc.) is all that is needed for the majority of smartphone users. Brix even says that copy/paste on a smartphone platform isn't even needed for mobile Office applications.

Despite Microsoft seemingly bold stance on the issue of copy/paste right now, istartedsomething reports that it indeed will be coming some time after the release of Windows Phone 7 Series. Sources close to istartedsomething report that the Windows Phone 7 Series team wanted to have the feature included from the start, but launching the operating system by the end of the 2010 wouldn't have been a possibility if too much energy devoted to make it work properly.

It took Apple two years to bring copy/paste to the iPhone platform -- hopefully, Microsoft won't take nearly that long to introduce the feature.

For DailyTech readers that do have smartphones, please participate in our poll and weigh in on the copy/paste discussion.

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Is Copy/Paste that hard of a feature to implement?
By Bateluer on 3/18/2010 5:33:46 PM , Rating: 4
Honestly, this functionality exists in the earlier, most primitive GUI systems. Even most command line interfaces support some variant of a copy command. Why is it so hard to implement on a mobile phone?

I copy and past URLs and information all the time, not having it on my Droid would be extremely restrictive.

By PAPutzback on 3/18/2010 5:38:34 PM , Rating: 3
Might as well drop word, onenote, and SMS if they think we don't require manipulating text.

By superPC on 3/18/2010 5:49:26 PM , Rating: 3 it has a form of copy paste build in. it's just not implemented. they're still searching for a better way to copy paste that fit with the overall metro theme.

By Justin Time on 3/18/2010 6:22:51 PM , Rating: 3
For mine, the issue is getting cut & paste to be an easy and natural process on a touch device, and that might be taking them a while to get right.

Apple sure didn't get it right... and it didn't take long before I was discouraged from using it any more.

Previous Win/CE etc used a stylus, and that makes cut & paste a fairly natural fit... but once you start using your fingers for the interaction... it all gets very ugly.

I suspect it's better to leave it out and get it right, than to release yet another clunky solution, like on the iPhone or 'droid.

By Brandon Hill on 3/18/2010 6:25:35 PM , Rating: 2
I've never found it to be a hindrance with my iPhone. I just zoom in to make the text larger and then copy. Rarely does it ever get in the way.

By MadMan007 on 3/18/2010 6:50:45 PM , Rating: 2
the issue is getting cut & paste to be an easy and natural process on a touch device

Having to zoom to copy&paste might not qualify as a hindrance to you but it doesn't quite match up with the above quote either.

By Brandon Hill on 3/18/2010 7:00:10 PM , Rating: 4
Well, as opposed to the alternative -- getting off my ass to go open up my laptop and copy/paste there. And that's if my laptop is even in the vicinity :)

That being said, double tapping to zoom, then tapping and holding to copy/paste does seem pretty natural to me. I guess some people just don't like it.

By kmmatney on 3/19/2010 5:05:14 AM , Rating: 2
I agree - if you can zoom its not so bad. There are some applications where you can't zoom, and then its more difficult. Overall, the copy/paste works pretty well on the iPhone, though.

By Bateluer on 3/19/2010 9:08:28 AM , Rating: 2
Its fairly easy on Android. Long tap on the text you want to copy and select Copy*(All, Word, Line, etc). Long tap where you want to paste it and select paste. Easy.

By amagriva on 3/19/2010 8:14:30 AM , Rating: 2
good job....

Won't be added to actual phones for many months.
By DudemanX on 3/18/2010 6:52:37 PM , Rating: 2
The problem is that phones aren't PCs which can run Windows Update a few weeks after release and install the patch. You're going to have to wait the weeks or months it takes to create the new version 7.1 or whatever that has copy and paste. Then unless you're big into using hacked ROMs on your phone(not most people) you have to wait until Verizon, Sprint, or whomever your provider is to release their new ROMs for their particular phones. This will take many months. Look at all the Android phones out there still running 1.5 or 1.6 with the carriers promising from months now that they'll get 2.1 ROMs released eventually. Microsoft could have a copy/paste update released just a week after these phones hit the market yet most people won't see it on their phone 'till months later if ever.

They should take the time to make sure it's in the release version, downplay the need for it, or just tell people to wait for 7.1 or 7.5 phones.

By Laitainion on 3/18/2010 10:03:33 PM , Rating: 2
From what I've read elsewhere (think it was on winsupersite) Microsoft's taking over the update process themselves, leaving only the modem drivers to the networks so in theory at least it should work just like updating a Windows PC does today. Only time will tell if this is the case though.

By dagamer34 on 3/19/2010 1:05:37 AM , Rating: 2
The reason Android is fragmented is because Google has no control over updating non "with Google" phones which run custom version of Android.

Since every version of Windows Phone 7 Series will be running the same software (no custom UIs allowed), I don't think they'll be running into that problem.

And to be honest, basically writing a brand new OS (on top of Windows CE, to be 100% accurate) takes a lot of time and effort. Better to have a few things done well at launch than rush a product with tons of features that clearly wasn't ready for market.

By kmmatney on 3/19/2010 5:06:24 AM , Rating: 2
So, WInCE never had copy/paste?

By omnicronx on 3/19/2010 11:23:54 AM , Rating: 2
Please stop pretending like WinMo 7 is going to be anything like its predessessors. MS has already flat out stated that they will be in control of the update process, and will have OTA updates just like everyone else. It will not be up to the carriers.

There was a reason that Microsoft laid out specific hardware requirements for WinMo7, it gives the far more control than Android has over its handset makers. Its far more likely that the WinMo7 experience will be much closer to that of Apple and Palm, where they release a common update for the platform.

This is one place where I feel Android has been left behind, it still gives the carriers far too much control.

Apple should sue Microsoft
By danobrega on 3/18/2010 6:10:49 PM , Rating: 5
After all, iPhone was revolutionary on not having copy paste too. I wonder if they patented that.

RE: Apple should sue Microsoft
By Dark Legion on 3/19/2010 12:43:59 AM , Rating: 2
I'm personally a bit more worried that they patented not having popular functionality in an original release and adding it in later.

RE: Apple should sue Microsoft
By MadMan007 on 3/19/2010 6:08:14 AM , Rating: 2
Yes, it's part of the 'Milk the iSheeple' patent #baaaaa

Good to see old paper-clip back
By Aloonatic on 3/18/2010 5:56:00 PM , Rating: 5
MS should have employed his services when they were forced to bring about the browser ballot.

"I see you are trying to connect to the internet, would you like to consider these alternative browsers?"

Everyone who saw it would have rolled their eyes, then instinctively clicked cancel before they'd bothered reading passed "I see you are...", MS would have (technically) fore filled their obligation to the EU, and everyone here could have calmed down and kept their blood pressure low regarding the whole issue. :-D

By Omega215D on 3/18/2010 9:09:35 PM , Rating: 3
Clippy: I see you are trying to copy & paste. Would you like to use a pen and paper instead?

Clippy should go bother the execs at MS. "I see you are acting like Apple when launching a new phone. Wouldn't you rather include more stuff than they did?"

probably not a smart move
By superPC on 3/18/2010 5:44:34 PM , Rating: 2
hmmm if they planed to include copy paste (or multitasking) from the start and just don't have enough time to make it work in time for the release than this is really a rock and a hard place situation for them. saying copy paste or multitasking will be supported later would cause people to hold off from buying the hardware. delaying it would give time for microsoft competitor to eat away more of win mo market. if they want to ship it incomplete (without copy paste or multitask) the only way to do it is to say that feature is undesirable. in the end i think it's better if microsoft just take the fermi road. show/give preview of all the feature to undercut the competition and release it when it's ready.

RE: probably not a smart move
By Proton on 3/19/2010 7:01:38 AM , Rating: 2
All of the Windows Phone 7 devices will be software upgradeable from Microsoft.
Unlike current devices that leaves upgrading to the manufacturers whim, Microsoft is taking charge and 'owning' the upgrade capabilities of the Windows Phone 7 operating system.
You will not have to buy a newer Phone 7 to get the newer upgrades.

Maybe not to you . . .
By blueboy09 on 3/19/2010 9:18:14 PM , Rating: 2
but it sure as hell does for me. I use the C&P feature for the web to highlight and copy what I want, and then I paste what I want to Word Mobile. Voila! It's done. No hassle. No problem, and it's great for people who forget alot too. It's easier to copy it paste it and then forget it, than to keep going back and forth between programs b/c you keep on forgetting what the hell those extra long characters/numbers were!!! - BLUEBOY

"This is from the It's a science website." -- Rush Limbaugh

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