TNW Quick Hit:
Today Microsoft revealed a number of new features that will ship in the so-called ‘Mango’ update to the Windows Phone platform later this year. Mango is a large enough upgrade to the phone line that it will induce a name change from Windows Phone 7, to 7.5.
The newly unveiled features are pointed directly at businesses. From Microsoft, this is the list of what is to come:
- Pinnable e-mail folders: Pin a folder to the start screen for quick access. This could be an email folder for a specific project, from a specific group or person (like your boss;), or an RSS feed you’ve set up in Outlook;
- Conversation view in e-mail: E-mails in your inbox are organized by conversation, bringing replies to a thread into a consolidated view so it’s faster and easier to stay on top of the conversation.
- Server search: Search your email server (e.g. Exchange Server) for older emails no longer stored on your phone, giving you ready access to all of your mail;
- Lync: Lync Mobile for Windows Phone will provide business Instant Messaging and presence so you can stay connected to your colleagues while on the go. The Lync app will be a free download from Windows Phone Marketplace with access to Lync services that are enabled by your organization.
- Complex password: Additional corporate compliance capabilities with support for alphanumeric passwords
- Information Rights Management: Support for protecting e-mails and Office documents
- Support for Hidden SSID: With support for access to hidden corporate Wi-Fi networks, IT organization can stay on top of their game—providing access to information while meeting corporate requirements.
- The next version of Windows Phone will also add the ability to save and share Office documents through Office 365 and Windows Live SkyDrive, in addition to the compelling apps that are being created by developers. To this point, Microsoft expects to exceed 16,000 apps available in Windows Phone Marketplace this week.
What is important about these updates is that they will put Windows Phone comfortably into the niche that Windows Mobile used to occupy: the corporate space. Microsoft is tying their best new cloud services such as Office 365, and their enterprise communication solution, Lync, into the phone line to let it integrate with its entire corporate system.
What follows are images that Microsoft provided along with the announcement. The first is of a new conversation view in the email client, and the second of the coming new Lync integration:
While Microsoft revealed this at today’s TechEd event, the company has another Windows Phone event coming on the 24th of May that is set to unveil a a rough roadmap for the phone line. TNW will be in attendance.
Other Windows Phone news broke over the weekend, including coming Facebook chat integration, Office hub upgrades, and tweaks to the phone line’s Xbox LIVE support.