The newest version of the Windows Phone platform, WP7.1 codenamed “Mango” has been announced by Microsoft at Microsoft’s Windows Phone VIP Reception. It will feature “over 500 new features“. Mango, which will be available this year, includes hundreds of new features and improvements organized around three key themes: easier communications, smarter apps, and the Internet.
Windows Phone 7 Features
The next version of Windows Phone keeps pace with the many different ways people connect and share – whether its calls, texts, emails, IMs, tweets, check-ins, or posting tagged photos or status updates. Some of the new features include:
- Threads. Switch between text, Facebook chat, and Windows Live Messenger within the same conversation.
- Groups. Group contacts into personalized Live Tiles to see the latest status updates and quickly send a text, email or IM to the whole group, right from the Start screen.
- Deeper social network integration. Twitter and Linked In feeds are now integrated into contact cards. There’s also built-in Facebook check-ins, and new face detection software that makes it easy to quickly tag photos and post to the web.
- Linked Inbox. See multiple email accounts in one linked inbox. Conversations are organized to make it easy to stay on top of the latest mail.
- Hands-free messaging. Built-in speech-to-text and text-to-speech support enables hands-free texting or chatting.
Smarter approach to apps
Windows Phone will challenge the way people think about apps. Mango brings improved app notifications and updates on the Start screen. Apps are also more integrated in search results and hubs. Highlights include:
- [advt]App Connect. See apps in search results and hubs such as Music + Videos and Pictures. App Connect works with Marketplace, so results include both apps already on your phone and new apps to download.
- Improved Live Tiles. Live Tiles are more dynamic and can hold more information—making it easier to get real-time info from apps without having to open them.
- Multitasking. Apps can now run in the background while preserving battery life and performance. You can also quickly switch between open apps.
Go beyond the browser
Mango packs a mobile version of Internet Explorer 9 and leverages built-in phone capabilities like location awareness and the camera to supply more relevant search results, local info, and suggestions. Highlights:
- Internet Explorer 9. The power of a PC-browser plus support for HTML5 and hardware-accelerated graphics.
- Bing. Bing on Windows Phone offers more ways to search the web with voice and music search and Bing Vision, which uses your phone’s camera to look up product info.
- Local Scout. Provides hyper-local search results and recommends nearby restaurants, shopping and activities in an easy to use guide powered by Bing.
- Cards. Handy summaries of relevant info from Bing (including related apps) for products, movies, events or place you search for.
New languages, phones, and app stores
This fall Windows Phone and its apps will also be available to more people around the world.
Mango will support languages including Brazilian, Chinese (simplified and traditional), Czech, Danish, Dutch, Finnish, Greek, Hungarian, Japanese, Korean, Norwegian, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, and Swedish.
And Marketplace, which now has more than 17,000 apps, will be available in 35 countries starting this fall, nearly double its current footprint. You’ll also be able to buy apps online.
Finally, there will also be more phones to choose from. Many of you probably already know about Microsoft’s exciting alliance with Nokia. Today we’re also announcing new partnerships with Acer, Fujitsu Limited, and ZTE Corporation to deliver new Windows Phones handsets.