Looks like the upgrade we've all been waiting (and praying) for...
Could this be about to get Microsoft back in the game…?
The InsideMicrosoft blog has just pulled a major exclusive out of the bag with extensive details and the first grabs of Windows Mobile 7 – the most radical overhaul of the OS to date.
Right now I’m sure you’re starring at the eye candy and thinking ‘Wow, this is more like it’ and indeed WM7 does appear just one step removed from a full desktop operating system, but there’s more to it than beautification – far more.
The big news actually comes with the extensive integration of gesture control. Yep, lest we forget, Apple may have stunned us all with multi-touch but Microsoft has its Surface project which promises much of the same and it is now at the heart of WM7. Consequently flicks, swipes, pinches, slides et al will manipulate the interface, but more than that we’ll see the arrival of ‘motion gestures’ too.
Whereas the iPhone uses accelerometers and gyroscopes to detect movement, WM7 devices will simply use the motion monitored through a device’s camera which opens up a whole new array of inputs such as shaking, twisting and turning. The first of these, for example, sounds a particularly satisfying way to switch off an alarm – though I’m sure the controls will be highly customisable and context sensitive.
Lastly, the multimedia aspect has been boosted significantly with a beefed up Internet Explorer capable of full web page scaling and tabs, a meatier Media Player with wide format support, dynamic photo gallery, Live Search mapping and even an iPhone-a-licious virtual keyboard rip-off.
Of course, as InsideMicrosoft notes, with WM7 not due to ship until 2009 (there’s Windows Mobile 6.1 to come first) a lot can change between now and then and Vista provides a stark reminder that many great ideas don’t make it through to the final product.
Still, it’s just a little bit exciting… isn’t it?