Microsoft on Monday unveiled the latest details of its holiday 2010 Windows Phone 7 launch, as the company changes gears to become more competitive with current Android and iOS mobile offerings.
Handset makers for the Windows Phone 7 platform include HTC, Samsung, Dell and LG. The first phones supporting the operating system will arrive by the holidays this year, with a wider selection coming in 2011. The first handset -- the Samsung Focus -- is slated to arrive in the U.S. on November 8.
Operators supporting Windows Phone 7 include America Movil, AT&T, Deutsche Telekom AG, Movistar, O2, Orange, SFR, SingTel, Telstra, TELUS, T-Mobile USA and Vodafone -- more than 60 carriers in all across Europe, North America and Asia Pacific.
Microsoft has been touting the new Windows Phone as a gamer-friendly mobile, with Xbox Live support and better gaming capabilities. At launch, Windows Phone 7 will feature turn-based gaming between Xbox Live users on the phone and PC, and will support leaderboards, achievements and gamerscores.
Earlier this year, Microsoft announced a large lineup
of Windows Phone 7 launch games from a wide variety of game makers, including Digital Chocolate, Gameloft, Powerhead, Carbonated, Namco Bandai, THQ, its own Microsoft Game Studios and many others.
One other major publisher confirmed support today, as Electronic Arts said its EA Mobile division would bring Need for Speed Undercover
, The Sims 3
to Windows Phone 7 devices.
Windows Phone 7 will arrive as Apple's iOS and mobile devices compete with Google's Android operating system and supported handsets. Better user-friendliness, plenty of app support and superior multimedia features of Google and Apple offerings helped marginalize Microsoft's earlier mobile offerings.
But Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer aims for that to change. He said in a statement, "Microsoft and its partners are delivering a different kind of mobile phone and experience -- one that makes everyday tasks faster by getting more done in fewer steps and providing timely information in a 'glance and go' format."