Microsoft’s Windows Phone 7 launched last fall (October – Europe, November – U.S.). After an initially positive overall reaction from tech pundits, it lost steam and marketing drive. Its recent and numerous issues related to a relatively minor system update has not helped its cause. And yet, two analytic firms have declared that Windows Phone will be the number 2 platform behind Android in 2015. The Nokia-Microsoft partnership is presumed to be behind this projection. Yet, Microsoft still needs to take a major step forward to catch up with Android, iOS and even webOS. Microsoft’s “Mango” update (AKA Windows Phone 7.5) is not expected until late in 2011 or early 2012. However, the word is that Mango developer tools will be available as soon as May 24.
Mango will bring app multitasking, Twitter integration (Facebook integration is in 7.0), a browser based on IE 9 instead of 6 and Windows Live Messenger. However, Microsoft needs to do more than just catch up to the competition to wow consumers and developers. It needs to deliver features and a user experience that goes beyond what we can get today in shipping products.