the look is typical Windows style of things which I personally am not a fan of (Stirs up images of grey suits, board meetings and general boredom).
Many xda users love the tweaking and the customizing. Android is probably a better choice for users that can't get over ORD (Obsessive ROM Disorder). I was an obsessive flash addict myself. There's the attitude of why pay extra for it to work one way well, when I can just tweak this and that for free to do what I want and how I want. Android is the better phone for those users.
But, Windows Phone 7 looks nothing like any typical Windows style. Metro drastically changed that. The grey suits were Apple's ads. Apparently they worked well. But, I think you would have to search pretty hard to find a Microsoft developer wearing a suit. Dress pants and a dress shirt maybe, but suits - no.
I was loving my LG Quantum with Mango, when work forced an iPhone 4S on me. Both Windows Phone 7 and the iPhone bring a very stable phone to the customer without the need for tweaking and do-it-yourself fixes. Both are very easy to use. There are certain things Windows Phone 7 can't do that the iPhone and Android can do. But, the intutive feel of Windows Phone 7 is very refreshing. And it does the things that most typical users need or want to do with a smartphone. Many on XDA are users that are exceptions. XDA attracts those that want to tweak and push the limits. Both can go 3 days between charging as well.
In 2012, I only see Microsoft improving the integratation with the services that most users really use and the new services that they started providing. Although the app market is growing at a rapid rate, the phone's biggest strength is that most things do not need an app launched because of integrated functionality.
There are some flaws, but Microsoft will work on ways to solve them. I personally think they are taking their time to solve them internally, so they can avoid any patent issues. With the onslaught of the patent war lawsuits, it is very important to not just copy your competition and take the patented work of your competition or you will pay them for every sale. Microsoft knows this, and gets paid for virtually every Android sale. They don't want to start paying Android or Apple for Windows Phone sales.
I have confidence that Microsoft will find solutions that do not involve patent infringements. And this will lead to great innovations in 2012 bringing the platform into a stronger position for the future.