Windows Phone 7 Series launches

WinMo becomes WinPho!

Microsoft Chief, Steve Bulmer lifted the veil of secrecy from his new mobile operating system today at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. Not, as expected, a new version of Windows Mobile, Windows Phone 7 is instead a virtual rewrite from the ground up.

Microsoft’s previous phone OS was getting a bit long in the tooth, and losing customers hand-over-fist to competitors that just felt fresher, like Apple OS and Android. Now Redmond strikes back with intelligent design and an integrated experience to allow users to combine their own PC use and social networking updates with gaming on Xbox LIVE and downloadable music, video and app content from the Zune marketplace.

The OS looks heavily touch-orientated, and works through front-end ‘tiles’, animated panels that can show recent activity and live updates. When selected, the tiles lead to ‘hubs’, sliding walls navigated by multitouch actions. Hubs are themed and automatically build up information from your PC applications, social networking sites or Xbox Live account. There’s also an office hub. The whole concept is seamless integration with an obvious bias towards Microsoft’s domain.

Qualcomm have announced the first chipset support, with its Snapdragon processors and HTC, Samsung, Garmin-Asus, LG, HP, Dell, Toshiba, and Sony Ericsson form the initial manufacturer line-up. The first Windows Phone 7 devices are expected around Christmas 2010. Quite a long time to wait, let the excitement commence.

Like to know more? Press release here