Windows Phone 7.1 "Mango" Set to Juice the Market This Fall
May 24, 2011 12:01 PM
comment(s) - last by
Look, Microsoft has one tenth the apps of Android!! Yay!
Visual search -- pretty amazing. A grown man visual searching for Miley Cyrus -- pretty embarrassing.
Fujitsu and Acer are making phones? You better believe it. Along with ZTE, they're among the new crop of Windows Phone makers.
"Everyone wants the Mango!"
New update brings multi-tasking, tighter Skype integration, improved input, new devices and more
Three new hardware partners; major UI improvements; OS upgrades -- Microsoft Corp.'s (
) "Mango" is shaping up to be a killer refresh for Windows Phone. Today at a
the company previewed the upcoming smart phone operating system and how it hopes to finally convince customers to ditch rivals Android and iOS.
The new OS
packs 500+ new features
. Want a taste? Read on.
I. Messaging and GUI Interaction
Microsoft has clearly invested a lot of thought and effort into improving
its base GUI
The revisions start with the keyboard, which now contains word suggestions, using predictive logic based on what you typed. No word (ha, pun) on whether the logic will be adaptive, though, to your particular writing idiosyncrasies.
Along with the improved keyboard comes improved speech to text. Much like the feature in Android, you can now speak to your phone and it will dictate what you said in the form of text for handy use in email or text messages. The phone will also read you text messages. Both features work while music is playing, but dropping the music volume.
Microsoft's already rich "People" social tile has received some improvements. You can now make "Groups" say of your college buddies or your significant other's family members, etc. Each group will get separate pictorial updates from various feeds, including the ubiquitous Facebook.
Speaking of Facebook, you can now multi-platform message. In a single thread you can mix Facebook messages and texts.
Similarly email has received a Facebook. You can now select important emails as do not forward to prevent embarrassing accidents. The email client now has an integrated calendar, which syncs automatically with the calendar in your Facebook account.
Microsoft showed of a number of apps, both first and third party. It also showed off features that broadly apply to third party apps in general.
Windows Phone now allows third party tiles, visible on the front screen. For example, British Airways showed off an app that allowed fliers to take 3D tours of their aircraft and get live updates via the app tile about flight times and more.
And multi-tasking has been added, as we predicted in our coverage yesterday. You enter a multi-program menu that shows you preview windows that you can flip through a la cover flow. When you reenter a program, whatever you were doing resumes. For example, a game will pause when you window out and start up again when you window in (so be prepared).
The app show began with the Pictures tile/app, Microsoft's first party design. Facebook auto-tagging and uploading has been added. Windows Phone Senior Project Manager Derek Snyder also showed off a fully functional mobile version of Office opening spreadsheets.
recent acquisition Skype
was also promised.
Microsoft also showed off a working build of Internet Explorer 9 Mobile, which in a live test beat the stock browsers from Google Inc. (GOOG) (though they used a handset with Android 2.2, not the latest Android 2.3), Research in Motion Ltd. (
), and Apple, Inc. (
) in an HTML5 benchmark, Speed Reading.
Via a feature called "App Connect", the snazzy new browser can also pass off info into apps like, say, movie search results into the IMDB app. Searches in Bing, as before, are location aware. Maps looked particularly impressive in IE9m, with searches by business type and reviews of the results all neatly integrated in.
Another impressive feature is Visual Search. Visual Search lets you take a picture of something and have Bing automatically search for it based on image and text recognition technology. Mr. Snyder searched for Miley Cyrus (hey, we're not judging).
Microsoft says that its app library now includes 18,000 apps. That's not bad, but it's still a far cry from the 200,000+ Android apps and the 350,000 some iPhone/iPad apps.
III. Hardware Partners
Despite rocky early months (Windows Mobile is currently outselling Windows Phone 7), hardware providers appear to be sticking by Microsoft.
It announced that South Korea's Samsung Electronics (
) and LG Electronics Inc. (
), along with Taiwan's HTC Corp. (
) are renewing their commitments to WP7. New to the party are China's ZTE Corp. (
), Taiwan's Acer Inc. (
), and Japan's Fujitsu Ltd. (
) are all jumping in as well. Both Acer and Fujitsu have little previous phone experience.
Microsoft biggest hardware partner will be Finland's Nokia Oyj.'s (
world's largest smart phone maker
. Nokia plans to
phase out its proprietary Symbian OS
and replace it with Windows Phone within the next couple years.
IV. Final Details
Mango will land at the beginning of the fall, which likely means August. That puts it narrowly before the
rumored launch of the iPhone 5
(September). Google's next great thing --
Android 3.5 "Ice Cream Sandwich"
-- won't launch till sometime between October and December.
That all means that at the start of the fall Microsoft may have the phone to beat -- if anybody pays attention.
Its hardware partners are planning on new devices, and existing partners will update current customers' phones to the new OS.
Microsoft has officially dubbed "Mango" Windows Phone 7.1, contrary to prior reports that suggested it would be Windows Phone 7.5.
The company promises to release a Beta software development kit (SDK) to developers within 24 hours. That release should fill in the gaps about the remaining additions (not all the 500 features were covered).
This article is over a month old, voting and posting comments is disabled
5/24/2011 3:57:29 PM
This is great news. This update is really something, and it's going to be here earlier than anticipated. I think Windows Phone is beginning to show that Microsoft really can innovate and stand out from the crowd. I really hope that Windows Phone shakes up the smartphone market.
I usually become bored of using the same phone after a few months and move on to something else, but with Windows Phone really is something different, and frequent updates that actually change the way you do things make me want to stick with this platform.
Keep up the excellent work, Microsoft!
"My sex life is pretty good" -- Steve Jobs' random musings during the 2010 D8 conference
Windows Phone 7.5 "Mango" Unleashes 500+ New Features
May 23, 2011, 1:36 PM
Gartner: Android is Bulldozing Competition, Picks up Third of Market in Q1
May 20, 2011, 9:44 AM
UPDATED: Gates Pushed Skype Acquisition, But Source Confirms he Had No Ownership
May 18, 2011, 3:43 PM
Android 3.1 for Motorola Xoom Coming Today, Ice Cream Sandwich Set for Q4 2011
May 10, 2011, 12:45 PM
White iPhone Coming in Weeks, iPhone 5 in Sept., iPhone 6 in Spring 2012
April 19, 2011, 11:55 AM
Microsoft Admits Lumia 925 and 1020 Have Sleeping Sickness, Bug Fix is Planned
November 24, 2014, 1:12 PM
Report: Samsung Galaxy S5 Sales Have Come in 40% Below Projections
November 24, 2014, 6:58 AM
Quick Note: Google Chromebooks Now Coming with 1TB of Google Drive Space
November 21, 2014, 1:20 PM
Xiaomi Aims to be #1 Smartphone OEM Within 10 Years, Apple Urges Caution
November 21, 2014, 9:33 AM
Quick Note: Samsung's Request to Dismiss Microsoft Lawsuit is Rejected
November 20, 2014, 12:53 PM
Amazon Offers "The Washington Post" Free for Six Months to Kindle Fire Owners
November 20, 2014, 7:41 AM
Most Popular Articles
Wal-Mart: Miss Thanksgiving, Get Xbox One + Master Chief Collection for $299
November 17, 2014, 9:40 PM
Nokia Lumia 635 LTE Windows Phone is Only $40 at Best Buy on Black Friday
November 18, 2014, 11:59 AM
Uber Exec Threatens to "Spend Millions" to Stalk Female Reporter and Her Family
November 19, 2014, 12:31 PM
Toyota’s Mirai Hydrogen Fuel Cell Vehicle Priced from $57,500 in the U.S.
November 18, 2014, 10:23 AM
Apple Replaces “FREE” Label with “GET” on App Downloads in iTunes App Store
November 19, 2014, 5:38 PM
Latest Blog Posts
Costco Gives Employees Thanksgiving Off; Wal-Mart Leads "Black Thursday" Charge
Oct 29, 2014, 9:57 PM
"Bear Selfies" Fad Could Turn Deadly, Warn Nevada Wildlife Officials
Oct 28, 2014, 12:00 PM
The Surface Mini That Was Never Released Gets "Hands On" Treatment
Sep 26, 2014, 8:22 AM
ISIS Imposes Ban on Teaching Evolution in Iraq
Sep 17, 2014, 5:22 PM
Space Terrorism is a Looming Threat For the United States
Apr 23, 2014, 7:47 PM
More Blog Posts
Copyright 2014 DailyTech LLC. -
Terms, Conditions & Privacy Information