After waiting nearly eight months since their original announcement, Microsoft (NSDQ: MSFT) will release phones based on its latest version of Windows Mobile on Oct. 6. Release.
Microsoft has designed Windows Mobile 6.5 to be geared towards both business users and consumers in an attempt to break from their reputation of being a workhorse-only. Practically, that means the phone’s touchscreen can now be used with a finger and not a stylus and it will have better internet browsing and access to an app store, called Windows Marketplace for Mobile store. It also comes with Microsoft’s My Phone, which lets users back up critical information, like contacts and photos, to the computer (a feature once limited to users who had access to Microsoft’s Exchange services). However, it’s not until Microsoft releases Windows Mobile 7 next year that it will be deemed more comparable to the iPhone or Google’s Android.
Microsoft listed a slew of partners that will embrace the new OS in North America, Europe, Latin America and Asia Pacific. In North America, it named carriers such as AT&T (NYSE: T), Bell Mobility, Sprint (NYSE: S), Telus and Verizon Wireless (NYSE: VZ), and handset makers including HP, HTC, LG (SEO: 066570), Samsung and Toshiba.