Oh, Microsoft. It's no secret that I think you could and should do more to win hearts and minds over to Windows Phone's cause. I proclaimed it loudly a year ago, and I'll say it again today. By relying solely on your partner manufacturers to trot out your few Windows Phones this CTIA, you've missed another golden opportunity for showing off the goods.
There was a lot of anticipation leading up to today's Apple iPhone 4S announcement, so much so that it practically took down the Internet. Whether you were happy with or disappointed by today's news, the fact is, the 4S is Apple's next iPhone, so what does this mean for you and for the competition?
If you're a current iPhone 4 user, there's certainly a question of whether there's enough there to make it worth an upgrade. However, for those looking for their first smartphone or those simply looking to ditch their current handset, the … Read more
This article was originally posted June 6, 2011, and updated on October 4, 2011.
Apple has unveiled the next iPhone at long last, and with it comes iOS 5, which we first learned of in June. We got demos of 10 of the 200 additions and enhancements, including the hotly anticipated over-the-air system updates, new message notifications, and group messaging. The iOS 5 update rolls out on October 12.
Deep voice integration through the Siri app (beta) was revealed at the iPhone 4S launch event today. This is the deep voice integration we expected, and in addition to handling text composition and replies, reminders, and meeting requests, it also reaches for a more conversational tone in its voice search. Questions like, "Do I need an umbrella today?" yields results like, "Yes, it sure looks like rain." A new icon of a microphone will soon join the virtual keyboard.
While all the new features bring happy tidings for Apple fans, many have already existed on Android, BlackBerry, and Windows Phone operating systems. That's not necessary a knock on Apple; all the platforms eventually ape each other's best features, and remember how long it took Apple to enable copy/paste on its original iPhone? What it does reveal is that Android, and even Windows Phone and BlackBerry, are applying real pressure.
Here's a look at how some of Apple's major iOS 5 updates line up with those on rival mobile platforms. We've included dates and the names of Apple's new features when available.… Read more
With Windows Phone 7.5 Mango, Microsoft is sending a clear message that its mobile ambitions are moving full steam ahead, but can they hope for more than third place?
Windows Phone 7.5 Mango review: Up to speed Ambitious Microsoft heaped up 500 changes in the Windows Phone update, many of which give the underdog mobile OS a fighting chance against Android and iOS, at least when it comes to features. (Posted in Dialed In by Jessica Dolcourt) September 27, 2011 10:00 a.m. PT
Samsung unveils first Mango Windows Phone Omnia W The smartphone will hit stores … Read more
The question on everyone's lips isn't so much if the more than 500 changes to Windows Phone OS will satisfy current Mango users; they will. It's a good release, on one that proves Windows Phone is maturing, however gradually. With it, Microsoft will continue to keep its current customers. After all, that set is already committed to the platform, at least for another year or so until their contracts expire.
The more crucial point is whether Microsoft's new and improved OS has charm enough to draw new takers, especially those from the legions of Android who may be curiously casting sidelong looks at Windows Phone. In that we're much less certain.
Related stories Windows Phone 7.5 Mango review: Up to speed Apps are crucial to Windows Phone success Windows Phone Mango update schedule, devices
Operating System We said it in our hands-on review: Mango is a good update. It adds many new, useful features and expands upon others that are already there. Besides that, Windows Phone itself has a certain elan. The Metro UI, as the brightly colored, pleasantly blocky interface is known, is clean and straightforward. The way information is organized liberates us from the clone-y sameness of tiny icons in grid formation.
Microsoft thought out of the box when creating a few new features and did a good job integrating others directly into the OS, like barcode scanning, song ID, and automated playlist creation in the music library. Not all of these are of Microsoft's own invention, but not all of them need to be. Most importantly, they need to make the Windows Phone experience satisfying and full.… Read more
Earlier today, Microsoft set Windows Phone 7.5 Mango free, and the updates are starting to roll out to handsets around the world, including here in the U.S. The company has done a good job of making the software available to most of the current devices, but a couple of the models are still in the testing or scheduling phase. If you own a Windows Phone device, you can check the chart below to see when you'll get the Mango update.
We should note that even if your phone is listed as getting Mango now, be aware that … Read more
This morning, Microsoft relaunched its online catalog for Windows Phone Marketplace, a move that gives Microsoft's nearly year-old OS a little more life, even as it turns our attention to the spotty state of Windows Phone apps.
Like it or not, the number and quality of apps in a platform's on-device marketplace can just as easily defend an operating system's existence or strike a lasting blow. (Just ask HP, and Palm before it, how the well-received WebOS withered, in part because of its anemic app catalog.)
Related stories • Web-based Windows Phone Marketplace opens • Windows Phone Marketplace hits 30,000 apps • Windows Phone 7.5 Mango: Full review
Today, the Windows Phone Marketplace has around 30,000 titles, compared with more than 250,000 Android apps and iOS' more than 500,000 speculated programs. It's a paltry comparison, until you consider that in four months, Windows Phone Marketplace ballooned 12,000 apps, up from 18,000 apps last May. Even then, its app count was arguably ahead of RIM's BlackBerry App World.
Already behind In truth, Windows Phone's growth is commendable, at least by the numbers. The platform's debut immediately put Microsoft at a disadvantage. Based on an all-new software backbone, Redmond's new mobile OS wiped the app catalog clean. Programs that worked with Windows Mobile 6.5 and before were instantly part of Microsoft's embarrassing mobile past. Windows Phone 7 was a fresh start.… Read more
The Windows Phone 7.5 Mango update is rolling out today, but if you're looking to get your hands on a new smartphone, T-Mobile will be launching its first "4G" Windows Phone device, the HTC Radar 4G, just in time for the holiday season.
Previously announced for Europe and Asia, the Radar 4G is compatible with T-Mobile's HSPA+ (14.4Mbps) network and features an aluminum unibody design, a 3.8-inch WVGA touch screen, and a 1GHz Snapdragon processor. In addition, the Mango handset has a rear-facing 5-megapixel camera, a front-facing VGA camera for video calls, and 8GB of internal memory.
Related links Windows Phone 7.5 Mango review: Up to speed Web-based Windows Phone Marketplace opens
Pricing and specific release date were not announced at this time, but you can read our hands-on impressions of the HTC Radar here.
In addition to the Radar, T-Mobile also announced that it has begun rolling out Mango to HTC HD7 owners. The update is being sent out in batches, and users will receive an alert when the software is ready for download. … Read more
After a long wait, Windows Phone owners on all carriers will begin receiving the Mango OS update, or Windows Phone 7.5. The over-the-air roll-outs begin as soon as today. (Keep tabs with Microsoft's update schedule.)
Ever since we first heard about it in May, Microsoft's intention with Mango has been clear: polish three key areas--communications, apps, and Internet--until they shine. Of course, Microsoft didn't stop with just those three topics, and not every addition or correction offers something special. Even as Microsoft homed in on some parts, it missed a spot or two.
We won't … Read more
In advance of its anticipated "Mango" software update, Microsoft is throwing open the doors to its newly renovated online Windows Phone Marketplace.
Related stories A look at Windows Phone 7 Marketplace for Mango Microsoft to app developers: Submit Mango apps to Marketplace now Windows Phone Marketplace hits 30,000 apps
The initial Marketplace was little more than a placeholder for things to come, a mostly static repository for maybe a thousand apps total. (Microsoft is now up to 30,000 titles compatible with Windows Phone.) In contrast, the new online Marketplace storefront is a sharper-looking app catalog complete with purchasing power and over-the-air downloads.… Read more