Windows Phone Head Honcho Andy Lees on "Accelerating the Windows Phone Ecosystem"
"This year has been one of significant change for the mobile industry. We are moving from a battle of devices to one of ecosystems. What is required to build and maintain a vibrant ecosystem is broad - defined by the relationship between hardware, software, services and applications working together to bring innovative new experiences to a world of devices. This shift has been accelerating, and we have been moving fast. It was only a year ago that we unveiled Windows Phone 7 to the world for the first time."
Andy Lees is "the man" when it comes to Windows Phone at Microsoft, and on the one year anniversary of Windows Phone 7 first being previewed to the public at MWC 2010, Microsoft has certainly come a long way. There's a long way yet to go still, and a big part of that is adding improvements to the sometimes-very-1.0 feeling operating system. The list is below:
"First Major Update: A free customer update will be made available for all Windows Phones in the first two weeks of March, which includes new capabilities such as copy & paste and faster application performance.
Availability on CDMA Networks: With added support for CDMA networks, Windows Phone will be available to even more customers on mobile operators such as Verizon and Sprint in the first half of 2011.
Twitter Integration in the People Hub: The popular social networking service Twitter will be integrated into the People Hub in the second half of 2011.
Office Document Storage in the Cloud: Document sharing and storage in the cloud via Windows Live SkyDrive will be added to Windows Phone in the second half of 2011.
Next Generation Browsing with Internet Explorer 9: A dramatically enhanced Internet Explorer 9 web browser will be added to Windows Phone in the second half of 2011. It will feature the same standards support (HTML5, etc.) and hardware accelerated graphics as the PC version.
Additional Multi-tasking Capabilities: We will add the ability to switch quickly between applications, run applications in the background (such as listening to music), along with a number of other capabilities in the second half of 2011. Developers will learn much more about this during April's MIX conference."
Sounds good to me. I'd have liked to have seen the first update come in January, but with it being mid-February I can't get too upset about waiting another month. The bigger, second-half of 2011 update, had better not slip though - and it had better not come out in December!