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The list of things that Windows Phone 7 can't do grows

Windows Phone 7 is shaping up to be more memorable for the features that it lacks rather than what new functionality that it brings to the table. The latest feature to be dropped from Windows Phone 7's spec sheet is tethering.

Some sites were reporting earlier in the week that the mobile operating system would support tethering due to comments made by Brandon Watson, Director of Windows Phone 7. However, a Microsoft spokesman contacted Boy Genius Report today to state that Watson was mistaken and that “Windows Phone 7 does not support tethering."

Microsoft's next generation mobile operating system, which recently went RTM, also lacks copy/paste and third-party multitasking. Both were features that Apple was long criticized for when the original iPhone launched in 2007. It wasn't until 2009 that the iPhone received copy/paste functionality, while full multitasking and tethering (in the U.S.) didn't show up until this year.

Microsoft's first iteration of Windows Phone 7 appears to be seriously lacking when it comes to basic smartphone functionality, but Microsoft still has time to add features at a later time. Microsoft has stated in the past that it wanted to make sure that the initial release of Windows Phone 7 was near perfect, and that things like copy/paste and multitasking could wait until a later date (possibly v7.5).

However, Microsoft has stiff competition in the smartphone market given dominate players like RIM, Apple and Google. Apple's iPhone has taken a nice chunk out of smartphone sales globally, and Google's Android operating system is dominating the sales charts in the United States -- Microsoft can't afford to be conservative this time around.

Despite Windows Phone 7's shortcomings and the presence of stiff competition, Microsoft has still boldly predicted that its latest mobile OS will crush the competition. The boys from Redmond held a mock funeral for the iPhone and BlackBerry earlier this month complete with caskets.



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Not a hard feature
By MozeeToby on 9/24/2010 2:26:45 PM , Rating: 1
Honestly, this isn't that hard. All you need is a pseudo-VPN server on the phone, a pseudo-VPN client on the computer, and IP over USB between the computer and the phone and you're done. There are several paid apps on the Droid that work this way (using the Droids USB debugging feature to get around the artificial restrictions imposed by the carriers) as well as at least one free, open source project. http://code.google.com/p/azilink/

(As an aside, can we please get an href tag? Having to paste the whole link into text rather than hyperlinking on the words 'open source project' is very frustrating to me for some reason)




RE: Not a hard feature
By Taft12 on 9/24/2010 3:16:48 PM , Rating: 2
I'm not quite sure your definition of "isn't that hard" aligns with 99% of smartphone users.


RE: Not a hard feature
By MozeeToby on 9/24/2010 3:44:26 PM , Rating: 2
I'm talking about MS's developers, it isn't a hard feature for them to add to the phone. If you're talking about users bypassing their carrier to get it for free, it's still a pretty straightforward four step process to get it going.

1) Install app on your phone
2) Install software on the PC
3) Enable USB debugging on your phone
4) Click 'connect' on the PC app.

Now if you're baking this into the phone itself, you can fulminate steps 1, 3, and 4. Possibly even step 2 if you publish drivers for it that recognize when the phone is trying to tether. But my point was that developing tethering support is not a difficult or novel problem to solve, unless you think MS doesn't know how to write a VPN server and client.


RE: Not a hard feature
By GaryJohnson on 9/24/2010 4:29:40 PM , Rating: 2
This has nothing to do with the difficulty of implementation, and has everything to do with the carriers wanting you to pay more to tether.


RE: Not a hard feature
By hughlle on 9/24/2010 3:50:21 PM , Rating: 2
Doesn't amtter what the user can manage, microsoft are more than capable i'd have though, for some small reason.


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