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First WP7 Update Coming In Next Month

David Gilbert

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First WP7 Update Coming In Next Month

Microsoft CEO, Steve Ballmer took to the stage this afternoon to talk us through 2011 updates for Windows Phone 7, Nokia phones and not much else.

Ballmer’s keynote at CES last month was memorable for nothing more than a complete lack of noteworthy announcements, and while today’s speech was slightly more interesting, it was hardly groundbreaking. Ballmer told us that the long-awaited for copy and paste update to WP7 would be coming in “early March” but it was the other updates that would be coming “at some stage” in 2011 which were more interesting.

Twiter Integration

WP7 users can expect Twitter integration (similar to the Facebook integration users are already enjoying), multitasking for third party apps, support for Office documents in the cloud (via SkyDrive) and possibly most interestingly a “dramatically enhanced Web browser experience” with IE9 to come to a WP7 handset near you in 2011. Graphics and hardware acceleration will make the browsing experience completely different we are told and a couple of demonstrations on stage comparing WP7 with IE9 to a non-WP7 devices displayed how well the browser looked – though as always these should be taken with a pinch of salt. Microsoft is saying we should expect “very similar results for IE9 on Windows Phone and the Windows desktop.”

Cloud access to documents via SkyDrive

Multitasking for third party applications will be a welcome addition to WP7 and on stage this afternoon we saw it in operation. By pressing and holding the Back button you will be presented with zoomed out cards of the various apps that are running at the time. The reason Microsoft hadn’t previously supported third party multitasking was for battery concerns but this has now been sorted out somehow - we presume.

Improved browsing experience with IE9

The final demo this afternoon showed off how a WP7 phone could be used in conjunction with the Xbox Kinect. Using the Rally Ball game, a Windows Phone user was seen tossing balls to an on-screen character, which is controlled by someone else on an Xbox using a Kinect. It was an interesting look at what could be ahead for integration between Xbox Live on Windows Phone 7 and the Kinect. You can check it out on the video below.

Other than that there was not much else on offer at the keynote. We got to see Nokia’s Stephen Elop and Ballmer hugging each other again, and Elop repeated what he had said on Friday at the Strategic Briefing in London last Friday and the only new Nokia WP7 news we got was that 2012 will see a large number of handsets coming to the market.

Source: Stories Microsoft

theDman

February 14, 2011, 10:23 pm

Its a shame my Xbox Live Extras app doesn't work on my HD7. It NEVER logs in.


Oh, and the IE9 had better support flash!!!!

Runadumb

February 14, 2011, 10:43 pm

Multitasking in action http://www.youtube.com/watch?v...





While this should have been in there from DAY 1 it is good to see. Got to say I am really liking the look of these improvements coming for WP7. They are on the right track.

theDman

February 14, 2011, 11:12 pm

Now bring on OVI maps and free guided navigation for life!

JohnH

February 14, 2011, 11:59 pm

WP7 + these updates + Nokia hardware. What could possibly go wrong?

BOFH UK

February 15, 2011, 12:34 am

I don't know what's causing the delays (most say carriers) but Microsoft has just got to start moving quicker in the mobile space. They launched in October and it's going to be March before we see the first update. Considering the launch version is really more of a Beta than a feature-complete product that's almost unbelievable. The rumors are the next big update with multi-tasking etc will be in October, a YEAR after they launched. That's unacceptable for an OS that needs to make up ground. By the time it gets here Android will have Honeycomb on phones (or equivalent) and probably a point release out and iOS will be up to V5, if not 5.1.





It's incredibly frustrating to watch as the combination of Microsoft's development muscle with Nokia's hardware design could be a killer combination but both companies seem to be moving far too slowly as if they STILL haven't learnt the lessons of the mobile industry from the last four years.

mistrip

February 15, 2011, 1:53 am

Personally i think i'd prefer it if there was a published update schedule, e.g 6 monthly. But, at the same time I'd much rather see properly functioning updates rather than botched ones that are rushed out. If it takes a bit longer so be it. I think the comparison with Android's updates is a bit unfair as in some cases users' never get them unless they buy a new phone. At least with WP7 updates should be available to all.

Hamish Campbell

February 15, 2011, 12:09 pm

@mistrip - well that wasn't the case with previous winmo phones. But one can hope.

Hamish Campbell

February 15, 2011, 12:10 pm

Jesus, that advert....did they get some school kids to come up with the idea?

Lantic

February 15, 2011, 1:59 pm

Good to see MS rushing to stay in touch. It would be even better to see a little bit of innovation from one of the biggest tech companies in the world rather than just delivering "me too" functionality.

Den

February 15, 2011, 2:45 pm

@Lantic - apart from the totally unique interface (which I prefer to my iPhone), what else do you expect MS to innovate on? Nokia will be putting full navigation on their WP7 phones, so apart from making tea and washing dishes, I don't think there is much left to do that hasn't already been done.

Hamish Campbell

February 17, 2011, 12:55 pm

@Den - that's why you, my friend, are not employeed in Mobile research and innovation :)

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