Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Windows Phone 7 Mango: Expect the Unexpected

Microsoft just officially introduced 500 new features to the new Windows Phone 7 update codenamed Mango. So far, it is awesomely looking good! New partners such as Acer, ZTE and Fujitsu add to the roster of handset makers that will produce WP7 phones.

Nokia phones will ship with Mango and Nokia WP7 devices are now being tested. Expect the Mango update to come out this fall to all WP7 devices.

Communications

  • Better social integration – Facebook was already deeply integrated into Windows Phone. Mango sees the arrival of Twitter and Linked-In to the mix, with the latest updates from your contacts appearing in contacts. Facebook location check-ins are now also supported and there’s new facial-recognition software to make tagging photos easier before you upload them.
  • Linked inbox – This frequently-requested view allows users to combine the contents of several inboxes into one. Mail is organised into conversations, so the latest updates are always at the top.
  • Threads – Carry on your conversation with SMS, Facebook chat and Windows Live Messenger on the same screen – so you can concentrate on the information, not which app you’re using.
  • Hands-free messaging – Text-to-voice and voice-to-text engines allow for easier texting and chatting while you’re on the move.
  • Groups – put a bunch of contacts into their dedicated Live Tile so you can quickly see their latest updates and send a text, email or IM to the whole group right from the home screen.

Smarter apps

  • Improved Live Tiles – these can now hold more information and be more dynamic.
  • App Connect – apps can now be included in searches (e.g. when you search for ‘movies’, the results include apps that help you find films showing in local cinemas).
  • Multitasking – switch quickly between apps and allow apps to run in the background.

Better Internet

  • Internet Explorer 9 – the built-in browser provides support for HTML5 and full hardware acceleration.
  • Local Scout – This app provides hyper-local search results for information on shopping, restaurants and activities.
  • Better Bing – Mango provides new ways to search including Bing Vision, Bing Audio and voice.
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