WP7_NokiaMetroI’ve been contemplating how to write an article championing a name that is both cool and aspirational for Windows Phone.  Apple has the iPhone, Android has the EVO and Droid names (even if Droid is a misused description of all Androids), even WebOS has the Pre.  Windows Phone needs a name to champion its cause and I believe I have the answer.  As circumstance would have it Nokia is looking for a name to denote their Windows Phone line.  On the MyNokiaBlog they are conducted a poll to gauge popular opinion and they actually have some decent names on the list.

Out of the names on the list I am partial to both Elite and Fusion.  But my vote was not for either of those as I crafted a write-in suggestion.  The name? Metro.  Windows Phone needs a name that transcends a line of phones.  It deserves something that is cool without trying to be.  Think of someone coming up to you asking “is that the new Metro?” The one celebs would pay a handsome amount just to get early. Its something the coolest man on the planet would rock as his main phone.

So what say you faithful readers.  Is Metro cool enough? Is another name on the list more desirable for you?  Don’t be shy in the end it will be the people who had the guts to speak up that will be heard.


  1. I like Metro but will that lead to confusion like ‘Droid’ does? I mean Droid is an OS and a phone line and a specific phone model. If Metro were a UI and a phone line it may go too far…who knows. I guess following the Android/Droid lead can’t be wrong in terms of recognizability…

  2. Right. The confusion over whether the name is signifying a phone or the platform is a concern. The thing is that it would bother us but not the average joe to only sees the commercials and doesn’t know Metro is the design language.

    I just think a marketing campaign around Metro can go so many good ways.

  3. FWIW, I think one needs to look at the future of Win OS and Win 8 to 1) have a ‘brand’ name that will differeniate the two and 2) at the same time, have some synergy (doh, did I just us the hated word synergy :-o ) between the two. Meaning, if/when Nokia gets into the tablet market, they will want/should have two distinct branding of the devices but not completely alienate/isolate the products.

    Although I like Metro, I tend to agree with DavidK although initially, Metro could be fine but there could be confusion if/when a tablet is released.

    With that in mind, to throw my non-marketing-professional suggestion for the mass, how about:

    -Phone –> Ice (’cause it’s going to be cool)
    -Tablet –> Blaze (’cause it’s going to be hot – whenever Nokia builds one)

    Anyway, just my two cents…

  4. @kimck99:

    Hmm, I don’t know how that crap above my name got entered into my post. Sorry about that, it was not intentiional on my part.

  5. Yeah metro sounds perfect cause its the style that windows phone mainly use and it sounds kinda cool.

  6. WOW! Just WOW! I would have never have thought of Metro but it makes perfect sense. I would definitely buy a new Metro phone to replace my HD7! ;)

  7. I’m very partial to Metro. As I started reading the article, Metro actually popped into mind. As fate would have it, it seemed to pop into yours, too. The thing is, Google decided to use the short version of their OS name to brand a line of phones and it works for them. Although Metro is not part of the name of WP7, as you have pointed out, it does signify what the UI of Microsoft’s OS represents. As for the tablets Nokia will end up making, it’s simple, Nokia’s Metro Tab. The name may be confusing to some but, not enough to keep people from being curious. It’s not a name that people will associate with Microsoft, right of the back. Let’s be honest, that’s a good thing. People need to be drawn by the name and interact with the product, before really realizing its a Microsoft product. In other words, people will not go in biased, when they see it’s a MS product right of the back. Good press and knowledgeable sales reps will spur a new growth for such a promising OS. Microsoft has done a great job on it and it deserves the attraction. What’s in a name? EVERYTHING!

  8. Metro sounds kick-ass, makes sense, short, and to the point, and for those in the modding community would hold kind of a special meaning(at least it would to me), but if that name doesn’t stick, I guess my next choice would be phoenix. Just cause it’s a new phone coming to the scene, but it’s being delivere by an old company like Nokia, kind of like a Phoenix rising from it’s ashes to be born anew. As long as they come back, and with a vengence I wouldn’t care much for the name.

  9. @Vince: LOL, you’re probably right. I haven’t seen a new Geo in forever. Most people who are not into technology don’t even know what iOS is. They simply refer to either the iPhone or iPad. You never hear Apple speak of iOS in their marketing or demos because it is wasted on the public.

    This is something that Apple gets above all other companies. The consumer generally does not care about any technical aspect of technology. They care about it being functional and simple with easy to remember wordage. Every other company tries to tell you why their product is technically right or superior. Apple just shows you the most common uses for their tech and let pictures/video do the talking for them.

  10. Metro reminds me of metro-sexual. I can see the phone now in that South Park episode. Yuck.

  11. Metro is nice, but I think “Nokia Glance” has a better ring to it. It also speaks to both Microsoft’s “Glance & Go” theme and Nokia’s design philosophy of reduction.

    Marko Ahtisaari, Nokia’s head designer was just quoted in the Wall Street Journal saying,
    “..today’s touch-screen phones are inappropriately immersive, and that he would like to design in a way that allows users to keep their heads up again.”

    So I think Glance is a great fit for Nokia’s WP7 devices.

  12. @Robb: The “Glance & Go” principal is only effective when dealing with the lock screen and home screen. Once you are playing games, viewing docs and other tasks the phone can’t help but to be immersive. The live tiles will go a long way to promoting the “Glance & Go” if they animated quicker (say every 3-5 seconds) and developers actually took the time to fully utilize the live tile capabilities which almost no dev did in the initial release.

  13. @Murani Lewis: I get your point, but glancable and ledd immersive goes way beyond the start screen. It’s about doing more/getting more content while performing fewer steps.

    Take for example, the pictures hub on the original WP7 release. You can view/save/share not only your local content, but also everything you’ve uploaded to SkyDrive. You don’t have to go to your gallery/camera app to manage local content then go to a new application to manage your cloud content.

    Groups in Mango is another great example. You get to see status updates from multiple services, pictures, send group messages, etc. Its much less immersive than jumping in and out of multiple applications to get the same tasks done.

    These kinds of examples can be seen throughout the platform.

    Though I have to totally agree about the live tiles not being utilized nearly as much or as well as they could be. Microsoft has made made the live tile functionality much more robust and easier to implement in Mango, so hopefully that will change.

  14. @Robb: I do see your point in the examples shown. I’m sure there are many more examples that can be laid out without much difficulty.

    I routinely do stuff on my phone far faster than my counterparts with their iPhone and Android. I’m sure part of that is my speed and knowledge of best practices but part of it is that the Windows Phone OS makes it possible to do things in less steps.

  15. “Genesis” as in a new beginning! For Windows Phone and for Nokia!

    Send my new phone to… :-)

  16. @Michael Lococo: I keep thinking about the Sega genesis when I see that name. The list is full of good options, maybe the best list i’ve seen in a long time. Usually companies have some real head scratchers filling it up.

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