Thoughts On Mango…

Now that the dust has settled and we’ve had time to digest the news about the ‘Mango’ event yesterday in NYC, I figured I’d give my thoughts on what was revealed and some things that were not. The event invitation teased that the curtain would be lifted on the future of Windows Phone via more information about the Mango update, but did the information that was released act more like an episode of LOST and reveal more questions than it answered?

For starters, only about a dozen features out of the 500 were directly discussed and only a few of those were new features that had not been previously revealed at MIX 11 or leaked. The features discussed during the event yesterday were:

  • Local Scout, More language Support, 4G Compatibility, New Hardware Partners, Cards, Internet Explorer 9, Further Bing Integration, App Connect, Improved Live Tiles, Multitasking, Deeper social network integration, Linked Inbox, Hands-free messaging, Threads & Groups.

Post-event demos revealed even more features that we heard were coming, but were not part of the event, like the revamped Zune music player and the now-playing artist lock screen addition. And even still, there are a host of features that we think we know about, but haven’t been officially discussed. Perhaps we will be given more information about the demoed features over the next few months leading up to the launch.

We’re told that Mango is feature complete, but not “code complete.” This means that all of the features that will make it into Mango have been decided upon and partially or fully implemented, but the code is not yet finished. The code is likely being polished for stability and performance just as we’ve heard with IE9 mobile.

The Mango event did reveal some new features and answer a few questions, but when you consider that 500 features are being delivered through Mango, there is still a lot of answers to be had, like, will we finally see a larger color palette for system colors and home screen tiles?

Overall, the Mango update is huge and when you consider that Windows Phone is already a better platform in its current, unfinished state than iOS or Android, it can only become even better with the host of features being added later this fall. The verdict is that Windows Phone 7.5 looks excellent and the amount of time between now and the release is only going to drive the demand for the update even further. There is still work to be done with Windows Phone, but Mango is an excellent start.

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