Rooms, a new feature in Windows Phone 8, is essentially a group chat function that allows people to stay connected and in sync. A ‘room’ also has its own notes, calendar, and photo album. You can invite people to join your room, and you can join one that someone else creates. Once the invitation is accepted, the room will appear as a special place on each member’s Windows Phone 8 device.
Now, what if the person you wish to invite isn’t using Windows Phone 8? A blog post by Lavanya Vasudevan, program manager for the Rooms feature in Windows Phone 8, on the Windows Phone Blog has some tips on using Rooms features on other phones.
In essence, other than group chat, Rooms features can be replicated on other devices through the use of other Microsoft apps that the Redmond-based company has released on other platforms. For example, those using Windows 8, Windows Phone 7, or iPhone can just add their Microsoft account as an email account on their device and the room calendar will show up alongside other calendars. For Android users, the free Hotmail app is needed.
For photos, Windows 8, Windows Phone 7, iPhone and Android users have to download the free SkyDrive app from the respective app stores. The room photos will appear as a shared folder, which will have the same name as the room.
And lastly, the free OneNote app is needed for these same users to see room notes. Again, the room notes will appear as a shared notebook, with the same name as the room.
Now, it’s worth pointing out that the ability to share calendars, photos/videos, and notes has always been possible through the abovementioned apps. If anything, these tips further illustrate the convenience of Rooms on Windows Phone 8. However, the question remains: Can you convince your non-Windows Phone 8-using friend to download a Microsoft app before he convinces you to download Whatsapp?
Source: Windows Phone Blog.