My Notification Centre Concept (Volume Controls)
DISCLAIMER: I'M CANADIAN. CENTRE IS CENTER.
As us WP users know, we have been clamoring for a notification centre for quite a long time, if not forever since it launched. Now, I've seen many others try and tackle this situation but I think that this idea makes more sense: The Notification centre should be hidden up inside the Volume Controls.
But why so? Well, we have to see what the others are doing first. The most obvious things to take away is that the notification centre should be readily accessed from anywhere inside the platform and that there is some kind of cue for the user. WP already has plenty of cues, with Toasts, lockscreen, live tiles, but none of those are really all too persistent or aggregated. So we'll skip on the cues.
Looking again at Android, the status bar is persistent. Looking at Apple, they have a shade that's somewhat there. The first question was, how can MS do it in a way that anyone could access it, from anywhere? Since the status bar in WP is nonpersistent, then we would definitely need something else. The second thing was, how could it be possible for the user to see how many notifications they had, and how could we make that fast and easy? The solution was of course, the volume controls. These are accessed anywhere by the volume keys regardless of app. Allowing the volume controls to be slid down would allow for a familiar, yet different kind of notification centre.
(UPDATE) Why the Volume Control?
So why the volume control? Unlike iOS or Android, Windows Phone has many, many ways of telling the user about a notification. The toasts, the tiles, the lockscreen all work together to provide users with information, that is, if they are actively using the phone. The current system already provides lots of information about the apps that users want to receives updates from. Therefore, the notification centre would merely take a more passive role and aggregates everything together into one single area which functions as a place where the user can check missed notifs.
Subtle, but there.
Obviously, MS would not want to change the style, flow, or usage of Windows Phone drastically just to fit in a notification centre. It would have to be fast, as well. So here is your standard volume control, with just a tiny exception, the "__ new" underneath ringer and volume, telling you how many notifications you have. This cues the user to check it out and in most cases pull down if they came from Android or iOS. (We can assume here, as the market is dominated by such users - most of them will come from Android and iOS).
Pulling the volume controls down, you'll see the beginning of the notification centre. Nothing much to talk about here, that's in the next section.
Ah, the notification centre! So, what's in it?
The notification centre serves as the central location for all the notifications in the apps you have. Much like on Android and iOS, it's essentially a notification shade.(You'll be able to choose the apps you want in the pivot structure in settings, or in the apps themselves. All notifications will be in there though.). You can swipe left and right to filter through apps and check what's happening in each one. Time can be sorted (PAST HOUR, PAST 24 HOURS, PAST WEEK, ALL TIME) to adjust how many recent notifications they want to see. No, they do not go away, but much like what's already done in the me tile, new ones will appear highlighted. More notifications load when using anything longer than 24 hours.
This I think might actually be better. Instead of having the pivots for each app, each pivot is instead a timeframe, and the apps can be sifted through by the list, in which case you'd have many apps. Again, it'd be possible to choose which apps you'd like to appear in the notification centre.
Notification centre resides in the volume controls, is pulled down much like a shade, can be accessed from anywhere, and keeps the WP look.
What do you think?
So what do you think about this concept? Does it work well? What could be changed? Please give me some feedback. Also, share it if you like it!