We were at the Windows Phone “Mango” big reveal today, and we came away impressed.Click here to see images illustrating our favourite Mango features >
Mango offers tons of delightful new features that improve upon the ideas of its competitors, and some features that are completely brand new.
But will these new features be enough to detract attention from the gigantically successful Android and iOS?
Microsoft says Mango, which will be released “this Fall,” puts a huge emphasis on social. Mango integrates Facebook with almost every aspect of the Windows Phone experience, and also packs in Twitter and LinkedIn integration as well.
Microsoft will also be releasing Windows Phone 7 devices capable of 4G speeds. Perhaps Nokia’s first Windows Phone 7 device will be.
Here are some bullet points of some things we liked today.
- Visual voicemail will be a part of Mango.
- Enterprise features like Information Rights Mgmt. You can protect messages, disable people from forwarding certain messages.
- When you’re out of reach (like while you’re driving), the phone will announce the a text message or caller and enable you to respond (even to texts) hands-free.
- Uploading pictures to Facebook will work out of the box, as will Facebook chat.
- Office 365 and SkyDrive will be great collaboration and cloud storage tools.
- Internet Explorer 9 is blazingly fast, and is exactly the same as the desktop browser
- App Shortcuts let your web browser hand-off information to apps. Looking up a movie in your web browser? Tap to view the same movie in your IMDB app.
- Quick Cards use Bing to aggregate information about entertainment venues. There are even maps for malls around the country.
- New hardware partners Acer, Fujitsu, and ZTE will be providing handsets soon. 4G handsets also coming soon.
- Windows Phone 7 Mango’s Internet Explorer 9 clobbers Android and iOS (current iterations) in HTML 5 speed tests.
- Hold down the back button to multitask.
Bing is getting some cool upgrades for Mango including the ability to check out maps of malls once you zoom in far enough in Bing Maps.
Microsoft demoed new and improved hardware acceleration. Games looked silky smooth, and Microsoft claims that every game will run well on every Windows Phone 7 device.
Mango will offer new multitasking features that look similar to those offered on WebOS and in Mobile Safari's tab browsing.
When you receive an event invitation, your phone will automatically check to see if you're busy, and tie a contact to the event. More importantly, in big companies, senders can designate whether an email can be forwarded to others.
SkyDrive support is great for storing and accessing files in the cloud. It's like DropBox, and has versioning for corporate users
Windows Phone Mango isn't launching until the Fall. Microsoft says they'll be telling us more about the other 500 features in Mango along the way.
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