Tag Archives: Windows Phone 7.5

Nokia Readies Ads for Nokia 800 Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” Handset

Nokia Corp. is getting ready to launch its first smartphones based on Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” operating system. It is most likely that the company will show the handset at its Nokia World  event in late October and will start selling it towards the end of the year. The company has already started to prepare ads for its Nokia 800.

Keeping in mind that the first WP 7.5 “Mango” is generally a rush project at Nokia, which only made decision to adopt Windows Phone as its primary operating system for smartphones earlier this year, the information that is circulating about it is not completely clear in many ways, but it is widely believed that it shares a lot of technologies with the Meego-based N9 flagship, but fully complies with system and minimum equipment list of Windows Phone operating system.

What we do possibly know about the first Nokia Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango”-based smartphone from Nokia – the Nokia 800 – is that it sports a curved 3.7″ AMOLED multi-touch display with unknown resolution and does not sport any hardware buttons on the front side. The handset is presumably powered by Qualcomm Snapdragon QSD8250 (up to 1GHz Scorpion ARM Cortex-A8 core, Adreno 200 graphics processing unit, 720p video, up to 12MP camera, integrated 3G, GSM, GPRS, EDGE, HSPA support and so on) system on-chip, sports 8MP camera, GPS navigation and other innovations. web-site has managed to obtain the first Nokia 800 ads* that depict the smartphone itself and show off the Windows Phone 7-style pattern that looks more like a disco-style one. The two ads obtained by the media resource emphasize broad set of capabilities amid high responsiveness of the handset. It is unknown, though, whether the banners are the legitimate and final since the handsets on both have differences.

Based on unofficial information, Nokia is preparing several smartphones, including code-named Sun (presumably with with 12MP camera and dual-core SoC), Saber (single-core SoC, 8MP camera), Sea Ray/Searay (with multi-touch screen) and something featuring a QWERTY keypad smartphones based on Windows Phone 7.5 “Mango” operating system for the “initial” lineup release.

In total, there are twelve Nokia Windows Phone 7 devices planned to be released in 2012. All of them are likely to somewhat resemble Symbian-based products, but should naturally offer clear advantages over the platform that is fading away.

The actual code-name of the Nokia 800 is unknown. Based on unofficial specifications and design, it is clearly not the Sea Ray handset shown back in June, 2011, but is likely the Saber.

Nokia World 2011 event takes place in London, the UK, in October 26-27, 2011.

Nokia and Microsoft did not comment on the news-story.


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Posted by on October 13, 2011 in Mango, Nokia, Windows Phone 7


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SkyMap for Windows Phone 7.5 Gets Full Point to Sky Experience

SkyMap application for Windows Phone was recently updated to version 1.5.

What is SkyMap for Windows Phone 7?
SkyMap provides interactive sky maps for any time, viewpoint and location on Earth. It shows the different names, coordinates, magnitude, astronomical rise and set times plus additional information for over 110000 stars, messier objects, planets, sun and the moon.

New Features in version 1.5

* point to sky mode, using the phone’s compass sensors
* fast app switching
* improved UI

Details about the new features in version 1.5
This is the first release of the SkyMap application for Windows Phone 7.5 (“Mango”) . It exposes the full implementation of the point to sky feature, using the compass sensor (if available). Now, users can point their phones to the sky, and SkyMap will help them identify and explore the stars, constellation and other objects in the sky.

The new version of SkyMap now supports the fast app switching mechanism, which allows users to instantly come back to the application. Also the system tray and application bar respect the night mode theme.

The Windows Phone 7 (NoDo) users were not forgotten, as SkyMap 1.4 became available for download a few days ago. This version improves the existing UI bars, making them more consistent with the familiar look and feel of the standard application bar. The usability of these UI bars was highly improved (by using expandable text descriptions).

SkyMap 1.5 includes all the features that were added in SkyMap 1.4.
Read more about SkyMap products here:

Marketplace Information:                        



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Posted by on October 11, 2011 in Windows Phone 7


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Windows Phone 7.5 (Mango) to Support Micro HDMI

One of the key missing elements in the initial Windows Phone 7 release was HDMI support.  The platform was perfectly capable of supporting video recording with minimum requirements; however, it did not provide an easy way to share that content with a nearby HDTV device.  However, that is changing with the Acer M310.

The new device will feature both the new Windows Phone OS – code named Mango – complete with accompanying micro HDMI output (a feature that can also be found on several Android handsets).  According to reports, the upcoming HTC Eternity, another Windows Phone device, will also come with the micro HDMI port, as well as DLNA wireless sharing.

According to a blog by Windows Phone NZ, the Acer M310 was shown in prototype at their recent Tech Ed conference.

“It looks like a good basic handset overall with a black shiny look and bevelled edges.  This handset has something we haven’t seen on Windows Phone handsets before – video output to HDMI.  It also includes DLNA support to play over Wi-Fi to a network connected TV, Xbox, or other DLNA supported device.  Other features on the Acer M310 look similar to many existing Windows Phone 7 handsets – such as 8GB storage capacity.”

The blog goes on to say that production for the new device is nearing finality, which means we should have more information, including possible release dates and locations, soon.  As for other Windows Phone 7.5 devices, they’ll have the capability, so it will be up to the handset manufacturers to provide the output.


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Posted by on August 26, 2011 in Mango, Windows Phone, Windows Phone 7


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Mobile Market Share: Windows Phone 7.5 Is Just the Beginning

The often maligned Steve Ballmer recently quipped that with Microsoft’s (MSFT) Windows Phone 7 gambit, Microsoft improved its mobile market share from very small to very small. Although reviewed relatively well in the press and online, the release suffered from a large number of small but vexing usability issues. Consumers balked, and Windows Phone 7 failed to make a dent in a highly competitive and increasingly fluid sector.

Data from last quarter on domestic smart phone subscriptions confirms a veritable onslaught from the Apple (AAPL) iOS and Google (GOOG) Android juggernauts:

More recently, a Canalys worldwide survey claimed that Google’s OS now makes up about 50% of global smart phone sales thanks to broad support from a variety of vendors and wide selection of entry-level devices, boasting over 550,000 new unit activations per day. While Microsoft has done a good job leveraging its patent portfolio and legal standing to monetize its stake in Android through direct OEM agreements, there’s no question that the Redmond behemoth remains a spectator instead of a brawler in the all-out war between Apple and Google for minds, hearts and wallets.

But it’s too early to write Microsoft off, and I believe the company, already undervalued on a sum-of-components basis, sells at a further discount that ignores long-term prospects in a space which has been and will continue being volatile. One-time winners have turned into today’s losers, and those sitting on the sidelines today may yet turn out to be tomorrow’s players. With the official RTM copy of Windows Phone 7.5, codenamed “Mango,” being released into the wild, there are signs that bode well for Microsoft and its manufacturing partners:

* Microsoft’s commitment to incremental updates and functionality improvements represents a serious shift — a late one, perhaps, but critical nonetheless. When Windows Phone 7 failed to make an impact, it would’ve been easy to pull the plug on Mango and instead focus on the radically redesigned Windows 8 platform due next year, a kick-the-can strategy Microsoft has been known to use before when confronted with lackluster launches. It didn’t happen. Redmond appears to be finally taking into account that year-long release cycles do not belong in such a fluid marketplace. Smart phone users expect and demand updates in days rather than months, and Microsoft is showing signs it understands this. This is non-trivial, as the company has been out-maneuvered before by faster development cycles; witness Internet Explorer’s astonishing collapse in users as Mozilla Firefox and Google Chrome offer faster updates and more rapidly expanding feature sets.

* Microsoft is investing serious resources into comprehensive support of current and future developers. Windows Phone programmers have been treated to consistent access to Mango beta builds, free toolsets and sneak previews into what writing Windows 8 applications will look like. With Windows Marketplace expanding gradually and showing signs of evolving into a truly viable ecosystem, handhelds operating Windows Phone will look more appealing to discerning consumers.

* A whole slew of support has been announced from existing major OEMs. Fujitsu, Samsung (SSNFL.PK), HTC (HTCXK.PK) and LG have all broadcast their intentions to offer Mango devices, and former leader Nokia (NOK) has already showcased a working prototype based on the appealing but Symbian-crippled N9 design. I believe Nokia’s all-in bet with Windows Phone may be a decisive point not just for the floundering Finnish giant but also for Microsoft. Nokia’s technical and design expertise is not negligible.

* Finally, the sheer quality of the Mango updates is impressive. After having an opportunity to interact with the RTM version of the OS, I walked away pleasantly surprised by the overall responsiveness on a single-core phone and lengthy list of bug fixes, enhancements and functionality tweaks. Most of the changes are subcutaneous rather than obvious, but the end effect is a “it just works” feeling that’s hard to quantify.The pane interface is streamlined and intuitive, a welcome departure from iOS and Android implementations of the touch interface. Engadget’s popular preview sums it all up rather well:

Wonder of wonders, miracle of miracles, Windows Phone is developing into the OS we’ve been asking for since we first used it last year. By adding in crucial elements like multitasking, groups, social network integration and more, it’s starting to play catch-up to the other big names in mobile. Not overcome — catch-up. Mango hasn’t shown us anything truly groundbreaking yet. At least this platform, still in its youth, is stepping onto the same playing field as hard hitters like iOS and Android, though. One thing that surprised us was how few bugs or choppy effects were present in this build, an impressive feat considering we’re still a few months away from completion. Overall, we’ve come away with a positive outlook on Windows Phone’s newest iteration, and are very eager to see the finished result

These factors point to this quarter as the first of many during which Microsoft seriously establishes itself as a contender in the smart phone space.

MSFT doesn’t look as cheap as it did three months ago, after outperforming the Nasdaq by a full 11%, but it’s still historically undervalued. As the market continues to be rattled by cyclical worries, this appears to be good opportunity to establish or expand exposure.


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Posted by on August 5, 2011 in Android, Google, iOS, Nokia, WP7


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Official: Japan To Get The World’s First Windows Phone 7 Mango Handset In September

As the sun just starts to set here on the West Coast, we’ve got a bit of news straight from the other side of the globe: Fujitsu and KDDI (Japan’s second largest wireless operator) have just confirmed that they will launch the world’s first phone running Windows Phone 7.5 (Mango) sometime in September.

Word of the new handset comes from a Tokyo press gathering which just began moments ago. Exact details surrounding the handset are still developing, but all signs are pointing to it being the Toshiba-Fujitsu IS12T device that Microsoft gave a very brief sneak peak of at their Worldwide Partner Conference just a few weeks back.

The handful of images in this post are pulled from a video of that fleeting glimpse; we’ll update with better photos as soon as they’re available.

Here’s what we know about the device:

Windows Phone 7.5 (otherwise known as “Mango”, since all the cool kids give their updates fun nicknames now) is the first major update to the platform. I’ve spent a good amount of time with it on a pre-release device, and to sum up my experience: call it what you will, but this is version 1.0. This is the first version of Windows Phone 7 that feels competitive thrown up against the likes of Android and iOS and, while it’s still lacking a trick or two, is the first version that feels complete.

For those of you who don’t gobble up every bit of Mango news, a quick recap of the bigger new stuff:

Alas, chances are pretty slim that this thing will ever come stateside. Don’t fret though, Windows Phone fans (hey, they exist!): there should be plenty of Mango to go around by years end, with the likes of Samsung, Acer, and plenty of others throwing their goods into the ring.


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Posted by on July 28, 2011 in Microsoft, Windows Phone 7


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Top five things Windows Phone needs to improve

The previews for the next version of Windows Phone 7 are out, and overall, the response from the press has been largely favorable, including CNET’s. The Mango update brings more than 500 new features to Microsoft’s mobile operating system and continues to build on a solid platform, with smarter integration of apps, more-robust features, and a faster browser. It also addresses a number of issues we had with the software when it first launched in November, so Microsoft definitely deserves kudos.

However, as much as there is to love about Windows Phone 7.5, more needs to be done. As our colleagues Jay Greene and Maggie Reardon at CNET News point out, Windows Phone still has much to prove in a market where Android and the iPhone dominate. Below, we talk about five of the biggest hurdles for Windows Phone and how improving in these areas could help the OS succeed.

1. Visibility and education
This is one of the biggest challenge facing Microsoft right now. Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer said at CES 2011 that people love Windows Phone once they see it, which I believe to be true, but it’s the “getting the people to see” it part that’s the problem. (The fact that some salespeople are steering customers away from Windows Phone certainly isn’t helping the cause, either.)

I loved the message of the first Windows Phone “Really?” commercials. I think we often get too wrapped up in our tech, so I appreciate where Microsoft was trying to go with the ad. The problem is the company didn’t show how Windows Phone would make things better. Aside from a tiny flash of the Start screen at the end, nowhere in the commercial do we see any features of the phone.

Subsequent ads have gotten a little better at showcasing some of the capabilities of the OS, but it’s still fairly generic and to be honest, a little dizzying. I understand it’s hard to condense an entire OS into a 30-second promo, so perhaps you focus on a certain angle–gaming, music, business features, social networking, and so forth. Also, Windows Phone is different and better than the competition in a number of ways, so why not highlight that? It worked for Verizon and the Motorola Droid.

The point is that if you want to persuade people to buy your phone, you need to show them what it can do and why it’s better than anything else out there, and so far Microsoft hasn’t done a very good job of that.

2. Hardware
Like Android, Microsoft has an advantage by working with multiple handset manufacturers, including HTC, Samsung, LG, and, more recently, Acer, Fujitsu, and Nokia. This means more phones, different designs, and, most of all, more choice for customers. However, as important as it is to offer variety, it’s also important to deliver a compelling and relevant product.

Though the hardware on the first-generation Window Phone devices might have been good enough eight months ago, thanks to the release of such products as the HTC ThunderBolt, Motorola Atrix 4G, and Samsung Galaxy S II, we’re quickly entering a stage where people are looking for and expecting the latest technology, such as high-res displays, dual-core processors, and 4G support. We know that 4G-capable devices are on tap and there are rumblings of a dual-core Nokia Windows Phone, but Microsoft can’t wait too long to release them, which leads us to the next issue.

3. Timeliness
To give credit where credit is due, Microsoft has done a lot more with its software in eight months than some platforms have done in the past year, but Windows Phone is also arriving to the game late, so it doesn’t have the luxury of time. As it is, Mango is scheduled for release in the fall and new devices, including those from Nokia, are expected by the holiday season. Yes, it takes time to put out a quality product, but Ice Cream Sandwich and iOS 5 are also expected around the same time, so Microsoft will need to continue to be aggressive if it doesn’t want fall further behind.

4. Loosen up some restrictions
With Windows Phone 7, Microsoft placed some pretty rigid restrictions on hardware and software. On the one hand, it definitely provides a consistent user experience from one device to the other, but we also think there could be some benefit by opening it up a bit to allow for more customization, both on the OEM and user’s part. This includes reconsidering some policies as needed, such as having to sync non-Exchange Outlook accounts through the cloud, which has been a sticking point with a number of users.

5. Few missing links

As I said earlier, Windows Phone 7 Mango fixes a number of issues we had with the first release of the software, but there are still some features we’d like to see in the near future. This includes universal search, tethering, and expanded landscape support (though Mango adds this in photos), among others. To be fair, we haven’t seen everything Mango has to offer yet, so we can only hope that some of these are addressed in the final release. We also hope that Microsoft irons out some of Mango’s features, such as the accuracy of voice-to-text and inconsistent results in Local Scout.

So there you have it, five areas where we think Windows Phone needs the most improvement. The good news is that these issues have more to do with Microsoft’s marketing and strategy than the software itself, which we think is very good. What do you guys think? What improvements would you like to see in Windows Phone?


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Posted by on June 30, 2011 in Windows Phone


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Latest Windows Phone 7 Mango Aspects Revealed!

The forthcoming Windows Phone 7 Mango revise (Windows Phone 7.5) has had some new features dripped compliments of Windows Phone devs Ryan and Travis Lowdermilk. There will be several new major features debuting in WP7.5 including Bing Audio and Vision, SMS Dictation, on-device podcast support, and turn-by-turn navigation. Read the rest of this entry »

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Posted by on May 11, 2011 in WP7


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