Windows Mobile 7 to Be Unveiled to the World, Except Holidaying Americans

Windows Mobile 7

It looks like Microsoft is all set to finally reveal Windows Mobile 7, long-awaited cure to the ills of all the earlier WinMo OSes. The action's due to happen at Mobile World Congress on Monday. When no one in the U.S. will care. Way to go MS!

Windows Mobile 7 represents a significant design change over the earlier WinMo issues, which superficially resemble Windows XP, and with their over-dependence on button/keypad control and inflexibility were looking extremely jaded. WinMo7, on the other hand, borrows many a design cue from the Zune's UI, which is widely praised as being rather good and satisfyingly simple (dare we say "un-Microsofty"?). It's extremely important for MS to maintain a grip on some of the smartphone market, since it's designed to work with large-display touchscreen devices. And in an iPhone design-dominated cell phone world, that's absolutely vital if WinMo isn't to go the way of the dodo.

WinMo 7 will, of course, end up on a wide array of smartphones in the coming months, from a variety of manufacturers. So it's pretty fitting that Steve Ballmer himself will unveil the OS at the enormous Mobile World Congress industry fair which is happening in Barcelona next week.

There's just one flaw in the plan: Steve's keynote is scheduled for Monday 15th February, at 3 p.m. Central European Time (11 a.m. EST). That's right--MS is revealing its key element in defending its smartphone marketshare on a holiday day in the U.S., meaning very few people there are going to soak up the news. Hmmm. Obviously there's a collision of timing here, and the European in me cheers "go Europe!" but doesn't this initial stumble just make you worry a little about the entire future of Windows Mobile?

[Via Wall Street Journal]

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10 Comments

  • Scott Stolz

    I have to laugh at this article, since whoever wrote it has no clue about how holidays work in the U.S. It is much much different than other places in the world, like Europe.

    First of all, it is President's Day (formerly Washington's Birthday), which is a psuedo-holiday at best. Banks and the federal government are closed, yes. Most businesses are open. State government offices are open (depending on your state). The buses and trains run on a normal Monday schedule, not a holiday schedule. Retail workers all have to go to work. Some blue collar and white collar workers have off, but others don't. It is not really considered a holiday in the same sense that Christmas is a holiday.

  • Anonymous

    Completely agree with most of the posts that:

    a) while I live in U.S. - the U.S. in the the center of the world and in fact MWC is the center of the world regarding all things smart phone related

    b) the holiday allows more time for those in the U.S. to actually read about the announcement; though everyone I know in U.S. is actually working today

    c) lastly, Coming Holiday 2010? Thats forever in the mobile space and Im sure there will be more informative announcements that come out about Windows Mobile 7 later in the year that likely willnt coincide with a U.S. holiday

  • Justin Roff-Marsh

    You don't seem to understand that, in the US, most people work on public holidays. This isn't Europe, you know!

  • Gregory Ferenstein

    Is it appealing enough for anyone to switch from Apple's OS, Android, or Blackberry?

    --
    @ferenstein

  • Benjamen Hicks

    It doesn't really matter that some americans are on holiday during the announcement. That just gives them more time to read about the new mobile OS on engadget like I just did. It seems like it's going to be stunning. Just when I was thinking I wanted a Nexus One...