Well, you’ve already seen Windows Mobile pictured, mentioned and even shown in full video action on the HTC Touch HD just the other day. Now it’s launched and fully legit.
So what have we got? For the classic Smartphone (y’know, non-touch screen) there’s an updated user interface, updated browser and services. For the touch-screen devices 6.5 brings the new honeycomb interface which lets you re-order programs and quickly access them. There’s no more menus either and the new OS brings a new unlock mechanism involving a slider (I’ll resist the temptation to mention the iPhone… DOAH!). There’s a new font style, new themes (sliding panels comes to touch-screen too), chunkier and simpler prompts and selection screens. There’s a vastly improved Internet Explorer with smooth zoom, improved page rendering and simpler interface. They’ve also added a bigger “X” / OK button. :)
There’s also big news for the Touch Pro2 and Touch Diamond 2 that was announced earlier today – both of these devices will be launched with Windows Mobile 6.1 but will be upgradeable to Windows Mobile 6.5. Orange will update their portfolio to include new Windows Phones with new user experiences and diverse personalization options. We’ve also seen the LG-GM730, which we assume is the LG Eigen from earlier this morning.
Want pictures? Click on for the snaps! The full press release is below too. We’ve also included “that” video you’ve been telling us about all weekend, just for fun.
Link – Microsoft Press Release
Microsoft mobile partners fly the Windows flag: HTC, LG and Orange preview first Windows® phones.
BARCELONA, Spain — Feb. 16, 2009 — Today at Mobile World Congress 2009, Microsoft Corp. CEO Steve Ballmer along with key mobile partners, HTC, LG and Orange, unveiled new Windows® phones featuring new user-friendly software and services. The next generation of Windows® phones will be based on Windows Mobile 6.5 and feature a new user interface and a richer browsing experience. In addition, Windows® phones will feature two new services: My Phone, to sync text messages, photos, video, contacts and more to the Web; and Windows® Marketplace for Mobile, a new marketplace that will provide direct-to-phone mobile applications and can be accessed from both the phone and the Web.
“Windows® phones bring together the best of the Web, the PC and the phone so you can connect instantly to the experiences you care about, no matter where you are,” Ballmer said. “We’re working with partners across the industry to deliver a new generation of Windows® phones that break down the barriers between people, information and applications and provide great end-to-end experiences that span your entire life, at work and at home.”
Windows Mobile 6.5 Delivers New User Experience
The new Windows Mobile 6.5 home screen keeps people up-to-date on important information by providing a dashboard-like experience to items such as new e-mails, texts, missed calls and calendar appointments. It also includes an improved touch-screen interface, making it easy to take action with a finger, and an updated version of the latest Internet Explorer Mobile browser, which in a third-party research study sponsored by Microsoft supported execution of up to 48 percent more assigned tasks than the other browsers and phones studied.
My Phone Service Connects the Phone to the Web
The free My Phone service will enable people to access, manage and back up their personal information on their device to a password-protected Web-based service, making it easier to upgrade phones without the worry of losing important information. With automatic syncing and backup, users can count on their contacts, appointments, text messages and other information being kept up to date and easily restored should they lose or upgrade their phone. Consumers also will be able to automatically upload photos and video from their Windows® phone directly to the My Phone service, making it simple to preserve content that, in the past, would have lived and died on the phone. The My Phone service is currently available in a limited invitation-only beta.
Rich and Integrated Marketplace Service Will Offer Easy Access to Mobile Applications
The new operating system features Windows® Marketplace for Mobile, a rich and integrated marketplace for searching, browsing and purchasing mobile applications from Windows® phones or from a PC by simply using a Windows Live ID. The new marketplace will be included with all Windows phones based on Windows Mobile 6.5, which will help consumers to easily find, install and experience those applications that fit their needs and make the phone truly personal. Developers, who have already built over 20,000 applications for Windows® phones, will be able to offer applications to customers through the marketplace via a simple security and compatibility check from Microsoft.
Partners Showcase New Windows® Phones
Leading mobile partners from around the world revealed some of the first Windows® phones showcasing the new operating system. In particular, mobile operator Orange will update its portfolio to offer new Windows phones with enhanced browsing, diverse personalization options and new user experiences. Similarly, two of the world’s top phone manufacturers displayed their Windows® phones.
• The LG-GM7300 is a stylish, user-friendly phone with features such as one-click e-mail set up to help people stay connected to the information they care about most. Available first on Windows Mobile 6.1, LG will add a Windows Mobile 6.5 version to the family, complementing an expanded alliance to dramatically increase the number of LG phones running Windows.
• HTC’s Touch Diamond 2 and Touch Pro 2, announced today, will be upgradeable to Windows Mobile 6.5. New enhanced contact integration combined with new Internet capabilities deliver a people-centric approach to mobile communication. HTC’s Touch Diamond 2 features TouchFLO 3D, a sleek and compact design with a large 3.2-inch high-resolution wide-screen display, while HTC Touch Pro 2 introduces one of the best-ever mobile productivity experiences on a phone highlighted by HTC’s new Straight Talk technology, an integrated e-mail, voice and speakerphone experience.