Its only about a year or so behind schedule (or is it two years now?), but at the Mobile World Conference in Barcelona Microsoft finally revealed the reinvention of Windows Mobile, rebranded as Windows Phone 7.
Although Microsoft has been falling behind smartphone platforms like iPhone and Android, and steadily losing market share, it still has a solid chunk of the smartphone market, and an audience of companies and business professionals that rely on Microsoft operating systems and applications and are anxiously anticipating the reincarnated mobile platform from Microsoft to provide the sort of seamless integration only it can provide.
Windows Phone 7 smartphones are not expected to be available until the fourth quarter of 2010–in time for the holiday shopping season. But, the reviews thus far based on what analysts and journalists were able to ascertain at the Mobile World Conference seem quite positive. Suggestions that Microsoft should just give up on its mobile platform, and rumors of its impending death seem premature, or exaggerated at best, at this point.
Essentially, Windows Phone 7 is not simply an incremental update to the waning Windows Mobile platform–Microsoft threw out the blueprint and started over to create a mobile operating system that matches style and functionality to go head to head with the iPhone and Android smartphones to reclaim market share and maybe even claw its way to the top of the smartphone heap.