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Microsoft Launches Windows Mobile 6.5

Offers improved touch-screen

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Microsoft has introduced a new version of its mobile operating system, Windows Mobile 6.5 at the Mobile World Congress, in Barcelona, Spain.

Windows Mobile 6.5 home screen features a dashboard-like experience offering information on new emails, texts, missed calls and calendar appointments. Microsoft has added an improved touch-screen interface that makes it more finger friendly.

"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," said Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer.

 "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 also comes with two new services. The first is "My Phone" which allows users to sync text messages, photos, video and contacts while backing up personal information online.

In addition the new operating system provides access to Windows Marketplace for Mobile, which allows users to browse and download applications directly to their phones.

Another new feature is Microsoft Recite, a voice search technology, which allows user to record, search and retrieve spoken notes using just their voice without having to navigate menus.

Microsoft MyPhone Contact Page

 

Microsoft Launches Windows Mobile 6.5
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  • Really?

    18+ months after the iPhone and 2 months after the palm pre preview this is all they could put together. They should have just stayed home. The ms mobile dev team should be ashamed of themselfs as should anyone who promotes them. Releases only come as the result of an upgrade to another product such as exchange or ms live and lack any real change in the Ux or rest of the platform.

  • Guest

    Great news from Microsoft.
    I can’t wait to get it.
    I can’t imagine one day without Windows Mobile. And I’m always pleased when I see that new features are comming.

    Thanks WM Team

  • Pablo

    I hope this device will not turn into a surveillance device (for Google) like Google G1

    http://blogs.techrepublic.com.com/networking/?p=981&tag=nl.e102

    Nice to know about Mobile 6.5.

  • We’ll see

    These are some guesses, based on my past experience with WM phones:

    1) Limited support for existing handsets. I could never even get my Blackjack upgraded to WM6. I highly doubt they’ll get this working for my 8525. That unusable piece of carp is sitting in a drawer while I chat happily away on my iPhone.

    2) Difficult integration with GMail IMAP.

    3) Daily reboots if I want to use the internet

    4) If I can actually connect to the internet, web content will be unreadable.

    • Art

      I use WM 6.1, and GMail IMAP works fine, web content is easy to read (I use a few different browsers; Skyfire, Opera and NetFront are superb) and reboots are not necessary. And GPS works like a charm, especially with the Garmin XT and Google maps software.

      I like my phone, and paid a lot less for it than an iPhone. My monthly bills are less, too. Sorry that your Blackjack hardware couldn’t be upgraded to newer software.

  • Mike

    The Windows Mobile phones are not in competition for the iPhone except in the eyes of the cell phone services. The iPhone is for the consumer while the Windows Mobile phones are for the businesses. The Windows Mobile competition is the Blackberry, it always has been and no signs of it changing in the future.

  • Guest

    WM5, 6, 6.1, 6.5… but nothing to REAL new in base (WinCE 5.x).
    But if NEW == .NET, then “Back to the future@ :)
    I have (and develop for) many devices. WM-platform is really… Another platforms have a big limits and leaks from their nature.
    The nature of WM have only one REAL enemy – Linux. And all steps of Microsoft in WinCE is is a steps of “bladerunner”. IMHO.
    dacksi@ngs.ru

  • Tim

    MSFT has been taunting us with Silverlight for Windows Mobile demos and rumors for nearly a year. They put a new version of Internet Explorer Mobile without Silverlightin 6.5.

    Steve Ballmer says, “We have some more work to do on Silverlight.”

    IMHO, Silverlight is the

      only

    trick MSFT has that could catch them up in the mobile app development market.

  • zzr

    What kernel does it use? Still CE5.x???

  • Guest

    HTC is the only outfit doing anything half decent with WM. But even thats just a front end. Same ol’ CE in the background.

    Hey, here’s an epiphany MS… HIRE SOME HTC DEVELOPERS!!!!!!

  • Guest

    I currently have a HTC phone running WM6. I can’t wait till my contract runs out and I can dump it.
    WM6 is just full of typical Microsoft annoyances….
    -ActiveSync which you’ve got no control over, which decides to sync at the most inconvenient times locking up the phone, or wants to delete everything you’ve synced if you end a partnership with a PC.
    -Popup Windows constantly getting in your way, the worst of which is the stupid battery warnings which you can’t disable, and even if you hit okay to acknowledge them they only wait a little then pop up in your way again.
    -A stupid password locking system which doesn’t work like a normal phone lock.
    -Annoying inconsistencies when entering contacts directly into the phone as opposed to entering them in Outlook…. one forces you to have an area code, the other makes you put it in manually (if you’re outside the U.S.), contact’s “File As” displays differently in Outlook if the contact is entered via the phone, categories aren’t synced properly, birthdays often double up if you edit them….

    The list of little annoyance which add up to a frustrating experience goes on…

    “Windows Mobile 6.5 home screen features a dashboard-like experience offering information on new emails, texts, missed calls and calendar appointments.”

    Something it should have had years ago, which we’ve all been adding via 3rd party software, and something which no doubt will be implemented badly.

    I mean…. you miss a call…. the stupid OS offers a little notification you have to open in order for it to tell you that, but does that same notification tell you who’s call you missed?? No… you have to open the phone menu and look yourself. and if they left a voicemail message, that’s two notifications and an opening of the phone menu… Sigh….

  • Lucas

    I have an HTC Touch, and have been really happy with 6.1, but… with some customization. I use Winterface as a skin, Skyfire and Opera as browsers, Microsoft Voice Command as the voice recognition device, and Pocket Controller to graphically mirror the phone onto my desktop.

    I used GMail IMAP (without any issues) for a long time on Outlook. But recently I’ve switched to just using the web interface for Gmail on Opera Mobile, and actually like it much better than Outlook for my purposes.

    I do agree that ActiveSync is a complete turd. I use ActiveSync to synchronize contact to ACT!, and it fails about 10 out of 10 times. Completely useless. If I sync to Outlook, it works… most of the time.

    Maybe it’s just me, but I don’t want a camera and MP3 player on my phone. I have a decent camera for taking pictures, and I am too busy actually being *on* the phone to listen to music on it.

    Tried an iPhone for awhile. Nice as a home phone. Drove me friggin nuts as a business phone.

    • http://www.legalinternetgambling.net/ internet

      Windows Mobile 6.5 is not yet available but was announced as a future update for three new handsets announced at the show–HTC’s Touch Diamond 2 and Touch Pro 2, and LG’s GM730–which will be shipping with the current version.

  • http://codehill.com Amgad

    I think Ms is slow in upgrading WM too. My last WM mobile was version 6.0 and I’m looking for reviews and opinions on HTC Touch Pro and WM 6.1, that’s how I ended up here. I always advice my friends and family to try out WM devices before buying them, because not everyone likes them. I have friends who are die hard WM fans and others who hate everything about it.

    But I think the main reason it is criticized a lot is because its a Microsoft product. Every other major manufacturer has one OS version for each handset. Yet people are expecting a WM mobile to be upgraded from one version to the next.

    I use Nokia and HTC phones a lot and I like both. Each one has its pros and cons.

  • http://www.internet-empire.com Singapore SEO Expert

    If that’s their answer to Google Android, we have some competition brewing.