Microsoft previews next version of Windows Phone 7

Seattle based software and operating system developers Microsoft has globally aired the upcoming update to Windows Phone 7, known as ‘Mango’ - which brings with it 500 new features.

Windows Phone ‘Mango’ has improvements around the areas of communications, apps and the web; with multitasking being the core enhancement and brings the OS in line with other mobile phone platforms.

The update will be free to Windows Phone 7 mobile phone owners, when the new version is rolled out around the autumn time with each mobile phone network rolling out their version in due course.

The communications aspects of the ‘Mango’ update relates to Twitter and Linkedin being brought in for the first time. This is along with threaded messages inside of text messaging, Facebook chat and Windows Live Messenger - all within in the same conversation too.

Grouping contacts together is also new, in order to follow their updates and communicate with them as a collective, through various means and even adding the group as a live tile onto the home screen.

There is deeper social network integration with Twitter and Linkedin, which is now a part of the People Hub with Windows Phone ‘Mango’ allowing Facebook check-ins and new face detection features.

Hands-free messaging will be a part of the upcoming update, with a built-in voice-to-text and text-to-voice support for hands-free texting or chatting.

The new features surrounding the application area are multitasking, with better live tiles and an improvement on delivering real-time information onto the screen without the need to open the app, plus a more thorough integration under the hood with App Connect for music, video and pictures.

Internet Explorer version 9 will be a part of the Windows Phone 7 ‘Mango’ release, with the same code base as the desktop version and support for HTML5 and full hardware acceleration. There is now access to the camera, for a Google Goggles type experience, plus a local scout ability that provides search results relating to the surrounding area for restaurants, shopping and other local businesses.

Announced at the preview event of the new platform are new hardware partners, from Nokia, Acer, Fujitsu and to ZTE; with the latter possibly offering low-cost handsets, as the company is known for producing budget devices of a good calibre.

Originally published at