Microsoft Unwraps New Windows Phone 7 Operating System

Nine new devices available from four hardware vendors to debut in November.

October 12, 2010

D.H. Kass

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Microsoft Corp. on Monday in New York City took the wraps off its much anticipated Windows Phone 7 mobile operating system, disclosing that the new platform will be available in November on nine phones from manufacturers Dell Inc., HTC Corp., LG Corp. and Samsung Group.

“We’ll have nine phones available when the Windows phones ship here in the United States in November,” said Steve Ballmer, Microsoft chief executive. “There’s a range of phones here, from LG, from Samsung, from HTC and from Dell,” he said.

He said that models of the new phones will feature Qualcomm Inc.’s Snapdragon chipset, a platform optimized for smartphones and other mobile devices.

Ballmer said that AT&T’s network will support the new phones beginning early in November, followed by T-Mobile later this year and Verizon and Sprint next year. Those carriers are among a large number of mobile operators offering the devices in more than 30 countries, he said.

AT&T will offer models from HTC, LG and Samsung while T-Mobile will carry handsets from Dell and HTC.

“We’re joined in this endeavor by a broad set of partners from around the world, not only the hardware manufacturers who build these beautiful devices but we’ll also have over 60 mobile operators around the world offering these devices in more than 30 countries,” Ballmer said.

Additional mobile operators include América Móvil, Deutsche Telekom AG, Movistar, O2, Orange, SFR, SingTel, Telstra, TELUS and Vodafone.

Ballmer said that certain models will be sold at Amazon’s web site and at Microsoft stores.

Many analysts have said that Microsoft has a great deal riding as it tries to carve some space in the burgeoning smartphone segment. Indeed, some industry observers are pegging the phones as Microsoft’s only chance to catch up in a market in which Apple Computer Inc.’s iPhone, Google Inc.’s Android and Research In Motion’s Blackberry have taken a substantial—and in many views—insurmountable lead.

Tied to the expected demand for the devices themselves is the anticipated boom in mobile computing applications. Researcher Gartner Inc. forecasts spending on mobile computing applications will balloon from about $6 billion this year to some $29 billion by 2013.

TAGS: Microsoft,mobile,smartphone,Windows 7 Phone

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