Windows Mobile 7 is Zune, Mobile Xbox, and Phone in One Chic Package
February 15, 2010 10:15 AM
comment(s) - last by
Windows Mobile 7 offers a bright, fresh look that surprisingly bears no resemblance to the iPhone, unlike its competitors.
The new Windows Mobile 7, set to release this holiday season, essentially acts an Xbox handheld, a Zune video/music player, and phone rolled into one. The Music+Video hub looks almost identitcal to the Microsoft's Zune HD software.
The phone also offers a clean, rich RSS-like social network feed akin to the new Google Buzz service.
New mobile OS from Microsoft to launch this holiday season, hardware will be consistently high quality
There's a sort of beautiful symmetry in Microsoft's mobile phone operating system announcement which
at the 2010 Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Holiday season 2009 Microsoft unleashed Windows 7, a desktop operating system that turned people's preconceptions upside down and fueled
. This year it will look to do the same, with the release of
Windows Mobile 7
talk of delays
(okay, so the OS will land
in 2011), forget all the complaints about the past Windows Mobile operating systems, forget Microsoft's
slipping market share
; you need to look at Windows Mobile with a fresh set of eyes because it is completely different.
The first surprise is in the base operating system. The past Windows Mobile operating system code base is about to become officially retired, relegated to some forgotten change management repository. In its place will be an entirely new mobile phone operating system built atop the existing OS on Microsoft's Zune MP3 players.
In that respect Windows Mobile 7 could be hailed as the long awaited "
" as it shares much of the look of the Zune, with bright, flat square icons, large text and nary a chiclet in site. The look provides the first true alternative to the iPhone (competitors like Palm and Google have largely emulated Apple's chiclet grid look) and will likely appeal to many customers.
Microsoft's phone is built around six key hubs -- People, Pictures, Games, Music+Video, Marketplace, and Office -- each a colorful and unique digital playground.
People will stream updates from Facebook and Windows Live, sort of like a RSS feed on steroids (or the recently unveiled
). Despite the reinvention, people will find scraps of similarity; the Music+Video hub is virtually identical to the software on the Zune HD. It incorporates a music/video store, a media player, and mild social networking.
Games is another place people will find familiar looks. Games is essentially Microsoft's long awaited mobile Xbox handheld. With the iPhone tearing up game sales charts, its clear that this is long overdue.
Marketplace will be Microsoft's rival to the App store. Here's a surprise --
no past Windows Mobile apps will work on the phone or be in the store
. That's right, unlike some (Palm), Microsoft's OS reinvention includes wiping the slate clean with apps. That downside is that means less apps and some unhappy developers, the upside is that customers can expect cleaner, fresher applications. Another slight surprise is that there will be no desktop Syncing other than standard Zune syncing; everything else will be done over the air.
Office and Pictures are much like you'd expect -- a photo gallery, and a promising, improved portable version of Microsoft's Office software.
Another critical piece of the interface is the browser -- the browser will be a multi-touch version of Internet Explorer. While it's no shocker that it's not blazing fast given how slow its desktop brethren are, the browser still looks pretty nice. And you can bet Opera and Mozilla already have faster browsers in the works.
Email will be handled through a mobile Outlook client that looks to be a fusion of beauty and efficiency in a tight package. The client has full support for Microsoft Exchange.
Microsoft is opting for an approach somewhere in between Apple's as its past mobile phone approach when it comes to hardware. Previously it had virtually no restrictions. Now, it's being choosy. While it still is not designing the phone itself, it has made hardware guidelines extremely strict. Every phone must meet certain speed requirements, support multitouch, have a Bing button (for quick searching), have an FM radio built in, and meet battery life requirements. Certain alterations, such as custom skins (like HTC's), are banned.
In short Windows Mobile 7 looks to be another dynamic holiday launch for Microsoft. Former Microsoft VP Dick Brass (see his
) better be taking note -- because this new phone OS is arguably the most revolutionary thing to happen to the phone market since the launch of the first iPhone in 2007. Looks like Apple might finally have a true fight on its hands for the title of trendiest smart phone.
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
RE: No apple fan here but....
2/15/2010 3:11:11 PM
That is simply because MSFT saw no reason to have more cash.
MSFT at one time hoarded substantially more cash but given its size it is unlikely it will ever get regulatory approval to buy out a $100B competitor.
As such MSFT started returning a lot of cash to shareholders ($4.4B just last year) in form of dividend.
MSFT still had $6.7B NET cashflow in Q4 (compared to $3.4B). They have the ability to buy a ticket to any dance they want to attend.
“So far we have not seen a single Android device that does not infringe on our patents." -- Microsoft General Counsel Brad Smith
Windows Phone 7 Series Interface Leaked Ahead of Ballmer Keynote
February 15, 2010, 7:13 AM
Catching the Buzz on the Facebook-Like Google Buzz
February 9, 2010, 3:30 PM
Former VP Says Microsoft is "Failing" Despite Windows 7 Profits
February 4, 2010, 11:11 AM
Windows 7 is Fastest-selling OS in History, Microsoft Posts Huge Earnings
January 29, 2010, 2:32 PM
Updated: Is WinMo 7 Delayed? Some Say Yes, Others No, Microsoft Stays Quiet
January 12, 2010, 4:32 PM
Numerous Leaks Detail 4.7" iPhone 6 Processor, RAM, Cellular and NFC Capabilities
August 29, 2014, 10:37 PM
Buzz Grows Over Upcoming Lenovo Vibe X2's "Layered" Rim, Intel Chip
August 29, 2014, 4:59 PM
Sprint Intros Free Wi-Fi Calling for Overseas Travelers
August 29, 2014, 11:30 AM
Nokia HERE Maps to Arrive on Samsung Galaxy Smartphones This October
August 29, 2014, 9:14 AM
Microsoft's Standalone Kinect 2 Goes On Sale Oct. 7 for $150
August 28, 2014, 4:33 PM
Apple Builds Not-So-Secret Secret 3-Story Tower for iPhone 6/iWatch Unveil
August 28, 2014, 3:41 PM
Most Popular Articles
Microsoft's Surface 2 Tablet Family Gets a $100 Price Cut
August 25, 2014, 1:16 AM
Owner of "Decepticon" Maserati Ordered to Appear in Court This Thursday
August 25, 2014, 7:55 AM
LG Posts Teaser Video of Its “Round Face” G Watch R Smartwatch, Set for IFA Lauch
August 24, 2014, 2:49 PM
Windows 9: "Upgrade Now" Button Coming for Enterprise Updates, ARM Preview in H1 2015
August 26, 2014, 8:00 PM
Second ZMapp-Treated Patient Dies of Ebola, Supplies Run Out
August 25, 2014, 7:03 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
Facebook Aims to Provide Internet to "Every Person in the World" with Drones, Satellites
Apr 1, 2014, 10:20 AM
Retail Mobile Sites Experience Outages in Light of Simplexity's Bankruptcy
Mar 14, 2014, 8:48 AM
Tesla vs. BMW: Who Has the Safer EV?
Feb 1, 2014, 2:56 PM
Justice Leaks Details of Next HTC One Two Flagship Phone
Dec 5, 2013, 4:04 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information