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Microsoft Cellphones

Microsoft Unveils Windows Phone 7 Lineup 391

adeelarshad82 writes "Microsoft officially unveiled its Windows Phone 7 mobile operating system, announcing that it will be available on a total of five devices in the US. Windows Phone 7 handsets from AT&T and T-Mobile will begin shipping in November, while devices from Sprint and Verizon will be available next year. In all, Microsoft announced nine Windows Phone 7 phones, the remainder of which will be available in Canada, Mexico, the UK, Germany, France, Spain, Italy, Singapore, and Australia. It will debut in some European markets on Oct. 21. While early signs are encouraging for Windows Phone 7, it is being deemed as do or die for the future of Microsoft's business."
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Microsoft Unveils Windows Phone 7 Lineup

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  • Seriously? (Score:3, Informative)

    by jlechem ( 613317 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:11PM (#33860692) Homepage Journal
    So they really expect to take over the market share that RIM/Apple/Android have over the cellphone industry? From what I've read it's a step forward for the windows mobile OS but it's not going to tear anything up. And this from a .net developer who loves his Droid X.
    • Re:Seriously? (Score:4, Interesting)

      by Penguinisto ( 415985 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:20PM (#33860802) Journal

      I don't think they're shooting as much for marketshare, as they are to enforce licensing on everyone who is not Apple (and Apple while they're at it). IF they can't sell phones, they'll still make money off of the mobile industry (see also their wee lawsuit).

    • Re:Seriously? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by tekiegreg ( 674773 ) * <> on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:23PM (#33860834) Homepage Journal
      Tend to agree. As a devoted .NET developer who recently got a droid and (via third party app) watched my droid sync up with my office Exchange Server nearly instantly. I'd been hanging on to my Windows Mobile 6.1 for quite some time, but moving from that to Droid was like taking 20 steps ahead in technology.

      Mind you Droid is not without a few quirks,but the differences are phenomenal. Droid is clearly the better platform.
      • Mind you Droid is not without a few quirks,but the differences are phenomenal. Droid is clearly the better platform.

        Pedantic-Man(tm) says, "Droid is not a platform. Droid is a brand from Motorola. Android is the platform." :)

        • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

          by Anonymous Coward

          Mind you Droid is not without a few quirks,but the differences are phenomenal. Droid is clearly the better platform.

          Pedantic-Man(tm) says, "Droid is not a platform. Droid is a brand from Motorola. Android is the platform." :)

          Pedantic-Man(tm) is an idiot. Droid is a trademark of LucasFilms, licensed to Verizon, for use on their Android phones. Hence the Droid Incredible, made by HTC, not Motorola.

  • Do or die? (Score:4, Insightful)

    by overshoot ( 39700 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:12PM (#33860706)
    Give me a break. Microsoft hasn't been dependent on first-mover advantage since the 80s.

    If they don't get traction with 7, they can do 8. Or buy Nokia or RIM out of couch-cushion change. Or several dozen other ways to buy into the market that I haven't thought of but I'm sure someone in Redmond has, singly or in combination.

    • Re:Do or die? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by tokul ( 682258 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:24PM (#33860850)

      Or buy Nokia or RIM out of couch-cushion change

      They already bought Danger Incorporated. If they buy RIM and repeat T-Mobile Sidekick disaster, PHBs should learn something about MS.

      • They already bought Danger Incorporated. If they buy RIM and repeat T-Mobile Sidekick disaster, PHBs should learn something about MS.

        If PHBs could learn, they wouldn't be PH.

    • Re:Do or die? (Score:5, Interesting)

      by Anon-Admin ( 443764 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:46PM (#33861068) Journal

      Dude, they will return to 80's tactics.

      #1) Put out an "Update" that breaks connectivity between the desktop and the Iphone and Droid Phone.
      #2) When the two fix the phone to make it work again do number 1
      #3) repeat #1-#2 several times.
      #4) Release WP8 pointing out that there phone never has problems communicating with your desktop
      #5) .......

      • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

        by khchung ( 462899 )

        When #1 happens, I will be looking for a Mac. It has now reached the point where my phone is more expensive and more important to me than my PC.

        If they pull that trick again, it is bye bye Microsoft.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by hex0D ( 1890162 )
      And when you RTFA, you'll see how the author basically argues against his own 'do or die' thesis at the end of it.

      here's the relevant bit, from TFA: ...there's lots of room for Microsoft. Consumers love their mobile phones, but they switch or upgrade as often as every one or two years. Also, consumers typically sign up with service providers like Verizon and AT&T and will happily switch to the next best phone. Who's to say an AT&T customer's next phone won't be a Windows Phone?

      So until c

  • by ChicagoDave ( 644806 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:14PM (#33860726) Homepage
    I've played with a developer phone in the last month and I'm currently an iPhone user. I have to say I think they're on to something. I like the iPhone, but I'm probably going to switch to WP7 in November. The integration between app and data is an order of magnitude higher than any other phone out there.
    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      Maybe true. Probably a case of too little too late. They had numerous years to get it together.

      They can only follow, which is fine. But they had plenty of chances to lead.

    • by UnknowingFool ( 672806 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @02:03PM (#33861264)

      The problem is that MS is entering into a very crowded market with few advantages. They can't rely on existing WinMo users because more of them are business users which is different from the consumer focused Windows Phone 7. It's pretty much surrendering the business crowd to Blackberry in that regard. It seems like a decent, solid OS but it starts out way behind Apple and Android. There also isn't any features that entices most people to get it. There are not many apps which uses the same walled garden approach as Apple. As with anything new (especially MS), I advise people to wait after the 1st gen for them to work out the kinks.

    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by farnsworth ( 558449 )
      I was on a flight next to someone with an early prototype, and it does indeed look like a nice UI. I was a little baffled by the lack of UI labels, but the guy seemed to have no problem getting around.

      The apps that I saw looked solid. But, on the other hand I'm curious about how well the browser is going to work. It ships with something like IE7 AFAIK, and it seems like it's not going to be a great experience. Are sites really going to have a mobile-webkit version and a mobile-ie version of their con
  • by Orga ( 1720130 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:14PM (#33860730)
    Electronics Arts also announced the first wave of games coming to Windows Phone 7, including "Need for Speed Undercover," "Tetris," and "The Sims 3." Tetris? That's a launch title? Ouch. Need for speed came preinstaleld on my droid, much to my annoyance. Wonder how much bloatware MS is going to get crammed in their OS.
    • by Pojut ( 1027544 )

      Wonder how much bloatware MS is going to get crammed in their OS

      I'd imagine there will be a general baseline, but the carrier will likely have a huge affect on this (as they already do)

    • by linumax ( 910946 )

      Electronics Arts also announced the first wave of games coming to Windows Phone 7, including "Need for Speed Undercover," "Tetris," and "The Sims 3." Tetris? That's a launch title? Ouch. Need for speed came preinstaleld on my droid, much to my annoyance. Wonder how much bloatware MS is going to get crammed in their OS.

      What's wrong with Tetris? It's one of the most popular games out there and it has been for a very long time. Also, I think it's up to carriers to "cram" bloatware into the phones. Similar to Android and Google, this is not much under MS's control.

    • by tepples ( 727027 )

      Tetris? That's a launch title? Ouch.

      Tetris was a launch title for Game Boy, helping it succeed where previous cartridge-based handheld video game systems (Microvision [] and Pokekon []) had failed.

  • Microsoft has been making pretty awesome products lately. I'm afraid, though, that many of them are failing because of their image, and in fact this is the very reason that I'm not even going to consider getting a Windows Phone 7 in the near future. Even if it is a better underlying platform than Android, the community will be what makes or breaks it, and to the community, Microsoft just isn't cool enough anymore.

    • Re:Image (Score:5, Funny)

      by h4rr4r ( 612664 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:21PM (#33860820)

      Care to name any of those awesome products?

      The red ring of death generator AKA XBOX 360?

      • I'll bite: The Zune was fine, and way better than the equivalent Apple products at the time. Microsoft's only misstep was attaching their own name to it. (And I say this as a happy Mac/iPod user)

  • Sure Steve. Except it was last weekend.

    A real blast from what I hear.

  • by tomhudson ( 43916 ) <barbara@hudson.barbara-hudson@com> on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:15PM (#33860750) Journal []

    mini's been saying the same thing - that WP7 is the product that will hopefully tie Microsoft together (but comments are weighing heavily towards the "or else" scenario)

    And mainly: it's a very poor matter of timing for a break-up. We're about to have a mobile phone come out that actually binds the companies divisions far closer than ever before: Office, Windows Live, Xbox Live, Bing, and Dev Div: this damn thing is the antidote for break-up talk. WP7 wouldn't be impossible to create with a break-up, but it'd be exceptionally difficult. WP7 is pulling together huge resources that none of our direct competitors have.

    KIN3 FTW !!!

    -- Barbie

  • So... (Score:3, Interesting)

    by LWATCDR ( 28044 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:20PM (#33860790) Homepage Journal

    Where is cut and paste and multitasking?

    It will be interesting to see if Microsoft can get any buzz with this. It has to be better than IOS, Android, and WebOS. It is only available in the US on AT&T and maybe TMobile. So on AT&T will people buy it over the iPhone? Will AT&T push it much? TMobile is the smallest carrier but they are a good carrier. Will they push it over Android since they have a long record with Android and the G2 has just launched?
    Microsoft is just in a very bad position. It isn't like the XBox where they came from nothing. They have a product that for the most part is boring and have been beaten up by both Apple and Android in this market.
    Unless WP7 is just super great it will be blah... Or to put it better it will be the Next of Kin.

    • by SpryGuy ( 206254 )

      iPhone survived 3 years without cut and paste. It's coming to WP7 just a few months after shipping (in early 2011). And it currently multi-tasks much like iOS does right now (mostly "fast app switching"). And a Verzion version is coming early next year. And it'll be available on Sprint too.

      MS has their work cut out for them. But the product is compelling already. It'll be interesting to see if they can catch up, and how much this pushes the others in the space to innovate and improve.

      • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

        by LWATCDR ( 28044 )

        Yes but the Iphone has cut and paste now and has multi-tasking limited but a lot of people say it makes all the difference.
        Android and WebOS have true multitasking as well.
        I will add that Microsoft WinMo 6.5 also has multitasking and cut n paste.
        Thing is that when IOS was lacking those features all it had to complete with was WinMo, RIM, Symbian, and PalmOS.

        WM7 must face both IOS and Android in their current state and honestly I don't see a big draw yet. We will see but WM7 must compete with IOS4 and with

    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      Copy Paste is slated to come out in an update this January. (This was in their version of a 'one more thing' at the end of the keynote)
    • Re: (Score:2, Insightful)

      by Sancho ( 17056 ) *

      Where is cut and paste and multitasking?

      Just about the only time I use copy/paste on my phone is during setup, when I need to input my long, pseudorandom WPA key. It is certainly very useful during this time. Otherwise, in practice, I just don't use it very much.

  • by Sycraft-fu ( 314770 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:20PM (#33860800)

    MS still controls the desktop, and lots of high end business market. That is a very solid, very profitable market. Then of course there's their office suite, game console, and so on. Having a strong mobile market would do nothing but help them for sure, but if you think they have to "do it or die" you've got your head in the sand. MS is doing just fine.

    • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

      by Old97 ( 1341297 )
      It's do or die in the mobile space. MS is very successful in the corporate world, but they haven't gotten much traction with consumers since XBOX in 2001. In order to continue growing and thriving Microsoft needs to create or discover some new markets. PCs on desktops in the corporate world is not a growth area - in fact it is likely to grow more slowly than corporate employment. On the server side MS has done pretty well, but IBM, Oracle and SAP are pretty tough and MS is unlikely to be more than a viab
    • by gbjbaanb ( 229885 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @02:22PM (#33861488)

      they've also seen their share price wibble along going nowhere while Apple's streaks upwards. You may not think that matters but it does, a lot. If this doesn't show some promise for future MS growth, you can expect a little shareholder revolt, Ballmer being kicked out and maybe a ton of layoffs and re-organisation in the name of shareholder value. You will probably also see some divisions spun off to stand on their own feet (yep, online and entertainment divisions.... you'll get your crutch made of cash kicked away) and then we'll see if MS is still the powerhouse, or if other companies suddenly find themselve with a lot of attention from ex-Microsoft shops.

      Let me put it this way - would you implement a Silverlight app today, when tomorrow it could be a dead technology replaced by Flash.Net? Its the same with businesses looking to implement their next set of apps, would they buy MS products if it looked like they were stumbling, or would they at least look at alternatives?

    • by Locutus ( 9039 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @04:34PM (#33862834)
      yes, they still control the desktop but not as tightly as they did before the iPod was released. The iPod got people using iTunes and liking Apple products and soon they were opting for an Apple computer when the time came for a new one. I've seen lots of "Windows" folks getting Mac's because they were sick of the virus's and other wackiness of Windows and they felt Apple made a better, easier product.

      They've had Windows CE based devices on the market for something like 15 years yet Apple's iPhone blew it away and quickly Android beat it into irrelevance. As the iPod / iTunes products opened peoples eyes to Apple and the Mac, what do you think Android and all the talk of Android powered TVs, Tablets, Netbooks, MIDs, GPS's, etc will do?

      They "do or die" thing is an over statement but when the customers start to get choice at the brick and mortar stores, the fast slide down is upon them. Their brand is already drastically weaker and their stock price has been doing down while the others going up. And when large economies like Brazil( 5th in the world? ) is doing just fine using GNU LInux and open source software Microsoft has to spend billions annually to fend of more of that. I think they're slated to spend over $500 million just on marketing Windows Phone 7.

      It's really not all roses in Redmond and with these little phones getting so much press hyping, Steve Ballmer's neck is sticking out in front of his investors and the board of directors. They have to see a success which relates to profits and limits the growth of the others. Something they've failed to do over and over without the advantage of leveraging the Windows desktop market position. IMO

  • by demonbug ( 309515 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:23PM (#33860840) Journal

    Wow. Just... wow. The HTC surround actually has a slide-out speaker (from Yamaha!)? I can't think of anything I want less in a cell phone. Maybe they should come out with an HTC ButteredPopcorn with a slide-out popcorn popper so I have something to snack on while reading all the (apparently deserved) MS-bashing around these phones.

  • by sr8outtalotech ( 1167835 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:26PM (#33860878)
    I saw a demonstration of Windows 7 Mobile last week. Microsoft decided to remove the VPN client and remote desktop features that were available in previous versions of Windows Mobile. But the award for lamest concept by a large margin was replacing cut and paste with auto-complete. That didn't go over to well during the Excel Viewer demonstration where people were asking how you transferred formulas from one cell to another.
    • Re: (Score:2, Informative)

      by idlewire ( 1901130 )
      According to one of TFA: "Copy and paste functionality will be available as an update in early 2011." (Apparently this functionality is also missing in the Slashdot reply box! Who knew!) In any case, it is ridiculous that the phones will not have this functionality right from the start.
    • Of course I tried this on my Android phone (2.2) running Quick Office and it won't let me copy and paste either - even though all other apps seem to support this...

  • by ludomancer ( 921940 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:32PM (#33860930)

    Please take it from my lengthy, extremely painful, dissatisfied experience. Never buy a Windows Mobile phone. Ever. I don't care WHAT they might have done to this version of the software, I can guarantee you it will not work a fraction as well as any alternatives.

    I own an HTC Mogul PPC6800. I have never experienced a product so poor, so lacking in quality and completely failing to fulfill its most primary functions. Every day I have to use it I wonder to myself how it was even released. I have never seen such a poor product even be allowed to enter consumer hands in exchange for money. It is just that bad.

    I felt this would be a good topic with which to share that experience.

    • by kindbud ( 90044 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:50PM (#33861108) Homepage

      But you didn't share any experience. You merely asserted it was a very poor product, without naming any reasons why you thought so.

      • by jimicus ( 737525 )

        I can't speak for the OP but my own experience has been:

        - UI. Microsoft tried to cram a Windows-type UI complete with menus and a start menu into a tiny, low-res screen. The result is complicated and awkward to figure out.

        - Usability. Related to UI, we all know how no PC operating system is 100% perfect, but you can usually get the results you need by either fiddling with settings or analysing what went wrong. Take that, remove the ability to easily analyse what went wrong and make the glitches intermit

    • I share your feelings about Windows Mobile [], but my understanding is that Windows Phone 7 [] is an entirely new code base and has nothing in common with WinMo.
  • when you can type up a report and run a spreadsheet (comfortably!) on a phone, then it's time to worry.

    • I think you want a Nokia E7 []. They say you can create powerpoints on it. Not sure about comfortably, but you can plug it into a TV via HDMI and bluetooth keyboard, so I guess that counts.

      The final device that was introduced during the keynote was the E7, a smartphone with a four-inch touchscreen and a slide-out qwerty keyboard. Vanjoki describes it as a spiritual successor of the original Nokia communicator and the best business smartphone that the company has ever produced. The E7 looks a lot like a keyboar

  • Here is my opinion (Score:5, Interesting)

    by Yuioup ( 452151 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:40PM (#33860998)

    My problem with Microsoft is that they insist on programming everything in-house and lock you in to in-house networks and in-house apps. I prefer a rich ecosystem like the iPhone and Android where people can make their own apps and have them integrate into your social networking life.

    Microsoft - once again - seems to want to make all your decisions for you and shove all their products down your throat.

    I seriously wonder how many Microsofties will eat their company's dogfood and geniunely love it.


    • Re: (Score:3, Interesting)

      by phantomfive ( 622387 )
      I have a few Facebook friends who work at Microsoft and are excited about the Windows 7 phone. They haven't explained to me why, though. Microsoft seems to have done a better job marketing it within the company than without. I'm willing to bet this guy [] works with Microsoft. 'The integration between app and data' (in other words it can open excel documents) has been the only reason to ever buy a Windows Mobile phone, so that's not exactly a giant leap forward.
    • I actually disagree a bit with you... Apple and MS both have these in-built proclivities and they both are very limiting and self-serving, where they differ is that MS tends to be much less subtle about it and the obtrusiveness is what actually makes them seem more annoying. Apple does the same thing but much more slyly so folks don't notice or get as upset about it. Android is too new to really have an emerging theme on this, but I have a feeling the chaotic envoronment is not going to end as a nice, clean

    • Since they're so late out of the gate, they need to have a lot of functionality that's been developed in-house. If they didn't release music playing software, etc. the earliest adopters wouldn't have access to those kinds of applications until third parties can get their software ported over. That could take months.

      Microsoft is eventually going to have an application store similar to Apple's app store or Google's android marketplace, but the hardware isn't out yet and the vast majority of developers don'
    • My problem with Microsoft is that they insist on programming everything in-house and lock you in to in-house networks and in-house apps. I prefer a rich ecosystem like the iPhone and Android where people can make their own apps and have them integrate into your social networking life.

      Um, Windows Phone 7 supports user-developed apps [] and has an app store [].

      • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

        by tepples ( 727027 )

        Windows Phone 7 supports user-developed apps

        From the page you linked: "Development in C++ will not be permitted." So how does one automatically translate an app written in standard C++ into C# or the verifiably type-safe subset of C++/CLI? I agree that the front-end of an app needs a rewrite per platform, but the back-end that implements business rules or game physics should be identical on all supported platforms.

        • Re: (Score:3, Insightful)

          Actually that's more like "Development in C++ will not be permitted**"

          **Except for companies we allow. Like Adobe
  • If you're into such gadgets and still don't have a smartphone (unlikely), other platforms offer better phones, more apps and a wider support and probably look better too...
    Is it just me or is 10mm hardly thin for a 'thinnest' these days - after all, iPhone 4 is 9.3mm...

    If you already have a capable phone - I can't really think of a single feature that could be considered an upgrade over latest in Symbian, Android or iOS...

  • by vmxeo ( 173325 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:51PM (#33861126) Homepage Journal

    I'm not going to talk heavily about whether or not Windows Phone 7 is a good consumer phone. Only time will tell what kind of market adoption it will have verses the iPhone, Android, and Blackberries already present in the market.

    I will, however, bemoan the complete lack of enterprise-ready features. Support for Exchange and and Office are good, but it's still a step backward from Windows Mobile 6.5. There's no support for 3rd party or enterprise apps. No mention of tethering or security certificates. Enterprise features such as have been promised at a future date, but I need a enterprise ready phone now. Maybe the Windows mobile 6.5 platform can be stretched to cover this need another year or two. But at this point, they're very little reason not to accept the reduced set of enterprise features and move to Android or the iPhone.

    In its rush to grab a chunk of the consumer market, Microsoft may lose what market it had in the enterprise world.

  • Angry Birds say WTF? (Score:5, Informative)

    by jrozzi ( 1279772 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @01:54PM (#33861168)
    Microsoft added Angry Birds to Windows Phone 7 site, Angry Birds developer say WTF!!!!??? They are so interested in making Windows 7 Mobile OS popular, they are making one sided friendships. []
  • So, are we going to need Windows Phone 7 Professional to be able to make phone calls and Windows Phone 7 Ultimate to have cut and paste?

  • by YesIAmAScript ( 886271 ) on Monday October 11, 2010 @02:30PM (#33861564)

    MS didn't show it in the demo (that I saw).

    The quality of the browser is paramount. Do we know if it's any good? Their last one sure wasn't.

    • Re: (Score:3, Informative)

      by cbhacking ( 979169 )

      It's very good for "everyday web" but is not perfect. It doesn't support HTML5 yet - apparently IE9's rendering engine will be ported Soon(tm) but has not yet been - but damn near everything pages rendered perfectly including a few pages that mobile Webkit browsers fail at (most seemed to involve frames, which are old but not-yet-dead tech). It's fast and the zooming is super-smooth. I've only played with it for a few minutes, but all the reviews I read state that the browser experience is excellent even if


    yeah, the act's old, but so is that interface.

    don't forget to tip the waiters! -- I'll be here 5 to life, tell your friends.

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