Microsoft Launches Next Lock Screen App and The Garage
Microsoft released the Next Lock Screen app for Android which saves you time with quick app launch and access to the information you need. It’s an app that sits above the lock screen and is designed to help busy professionals manage their day without having to unlock their phone. Next allows you to see your calendar, missed calls, email and text messages all at a glance. Perhaps the biggest time saver is that it allows you to connect to a conference call in one tap without unlocking your phone.
Next doesn’t look like a typical Microsoft app, it uses beautiful imagery, simple UX, and very intuitive navigation. You can tell every aspect of the app has been designed thoughtfully. The calendar integration is great; it’s really helpful to have my meetings show up above the lock screen so I always know what’s coming up. My favorite feature is having app shortcuts available with one tap and the apps change depending on if I’m at work, on the go, or at home. I expect the app will get to know me and my habits and become more useful over time. This morning I changed my Next lock screen to ‘On the go’ when I started my commute and listened to the Audible app, it’s what I listen to every morning. It’ll be interesting to see how long it takes Next to learn that and in the future when I get in my car, On the go and Audible are there for me with one tap.
Also, it’s interesting to see Microsoft developing apps under The Garage brand. As a former Microsoftie the name was synonymous with late night coding on pet projects and pizza. Most ideas required you to use your influence to get your idea funded. However, with Satya’s new Growth Hacking culture and The Garage brand becoming mainstream, it’s great to see Microsoft consciously funding innovation and expect it to be part of people’s day jobs, not something they do on their own after hours.
We at 8ninths look forward to watching new ideas from Microsoft emerge in The Garage.