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Dates Firm Up For Windows Mobile 7 In 2010

Rumors from China are firming up some key events for Windows Mobile 7. It seems that WinMo 7 is mostly complete and it should be released to manufacturers in Q1 2010. We can then expect handsets to show up in stores in the third quarter.
Rumors from China are firming up some key events for Windows Mobile 7. It seems that WinMo 7 is mostly complete and it should be released to manufacturers in Q1 2010. We can then expect handsets to show up in stores in the third quarter.Ars Technica has made some efforts to translate the story out of China. It has long been rumored that WinMo 7 would ship in 2010 and Steve Ballmer pretty much confirmed it recently, but he gave no dates. It makes sense that Microsoft would target Q3 as it gives all of the carriers a chance to get the new product in time for the shopping season.

The Q1 release to manufacturers will be for them to test the OS with their devices. There will continue to be further tweaks to the OS based on feedback and unfinished features into the 2nd quarter.

It is no surprise that Microsoft is putting WinMo 7 on the fast track. WinMo 6.5 was just released and while individual devices are getting kudos, overall, the platform seems to have been welcomed by a collective yawn. There seems to be more excitement building around the current generation of Android phones than WinMo 6.5 garnered when it launched last month. Even Microsoft is indicating that 6.5 is just a placeholder until 7.0 ships.

I know this much. WinMo 7 is going to have to be really impressive to reverse the image WinMo 6.x has gotten compared to the competition. Q3 is nearly a year away. That is an eternity in the mobile phone space. Android will probably release at least one but likely two updates in that time frame and Apple has consistently upgraded the iPhone every summer since launch and I'd be willing to bet a new revision of Palm's WebOS will be out, though I still question the viability of that platform in the long term. Will the market wait for WinMo 7?