Friday, February 20, 2009

Mobile World Congress: Microsoft Roundup

Microsoft announced four major new products at Mobile World Congress: Microsoft Recite, Microsoft My Phone, Microsoft Windows Marketplace and most important of all, Windows Mobile 6.5.

Microsoft Recite
First of all, Microsoft released a Technology Review of their new voice note taking app for Windows Mobile 6.0 and above. The special thing about this app though, is the ability to search your previously recorded notes with just your voice. Remember, it's not a final product yet, and Microsoft is looking for your feedback.  Read

Microsoft My Phone
As previously seen, Microsoft My Phone is a private beta MobileMe-like syncing service for Windows Mobile  phones. If you want to enter the beta, register here.

Microsoft Windows Marketplace
Everyone's copying Apple's App Store. Seriously. Microsoft announced Windows Marketplace, a unified storefront for the over 20,000 Windows Mobile applications. As rumored, that means you'll be able to get apps directly from your phone, and Microsoft has also promised new and better tools for developers in the future. 

Windows Mobile 6.5
Last but not least, the most important announcement of all. Microsoft announces the new Windows Mobile: 6.5.The latest rendition of Microsoft's mobile platform puts an emphasis on touch-friendliness with a honeycomb-style main menu that the company says is easier to finger than a traditional grid layout; a new lock screen that can be slid on different alerts to automatically call up texts, voicemails, and so on; a thoroughly-restyled cut of Internet Explorer Mobile that features a touchable zoom slider and frequently-used commands; redesigned menus that don't need a stylus to actuate; fingerable home and contacts screens, and more. It's not the thorough gutting of the platform many were hoping for, but for anyone thinking that Windows Mobile 6.1 can stand another facelift without ending up looking like Joan Rivers, 6.5's clearly your baby. Sadly, Microsoft's saying that no devices in the market today will receive official 6.5 updates, but don't pull out your wallets just yet, though - the first devices with Windows Mobile 6.5 preinstalled should be available in the fourth quarter of the year.

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