Enterprise Mobility: Microsoft's Windows Phone Mango Update Improves Office, Email, Xbox
Microsoft (NYSE:MSFT) showed off new features of its Windows Phone "Mango" update at a small New York City presentation for media and analysts May 24. Mango will supposedly come with close to 500 new elements, including a number of features for both enterprise users and consumers. More to the point, the update represents something of a revamp for Microsoft's smartphone platform, allowing it to better compete, at least in theory, against Apple's iPhone and the growing family of Google Android devices. As part of that revamp, Microsoft is leaning heavily on services such as Twitter and LinkedIn, which feature prominently Windows Phone's "People" Hub and other places. The Mango update will also offer expanded functionality for Windows Phone's Office and Xbox Live Hubs. The latter has been redesigned to take advantage of Mango's new multitasking abilities, letting users leave games temporarily to answer emails and perform other tasks before logging back in. Meanwhile, Mango's newfound enterprise functionality includes the ability to search a server for email items no longer stored on the device and share and save Office documents via Office 365 and Windows SkyDrive. There's also an upgraded Internet experience, one that tightly bakes Microsoft's Bing search engine into the interface. Samsung, LG Electronics and HTC already build Windows Phone devices and will release new ones in conjunction with Mango. Acer, Fujitsu and ZTE will produce Mango-loaded Windows Phone devices for the first time. The first smartphones from Microsoft's partnership with Nokia will also come with Mango preloaded.