TechSpot: Windows Phone 7.5 Mango Preview

Last week Microsoft presented us with a Samsung Focus smartphone that was running a recent pre-release build of Windows Phone 7.5 "Mango." Mango is the version of the OS that will replace Windows Phone 7, which launched last year. Windows Phone Mango brings many new things to Microsoft-powered smartphones, as you can see in the article's video.

From a messaging perspective, you'll find combined email inboxes, an improved messaging system that lets users switch between text, IM, and Facebook chat on the fly, and new integration of Twitter and LinkedIn into the social aspects of the People app. In this pre-release build I was testing, Twitter and LinkedIn support were missing.

The new, and much-hyped, task switching and multitasking features are very nice to have, and I'm looking forward to seeing new apps that take advantage of the background audio system and various other APIs that are being made available to developers. Users won't have access to pure multitasking in the Android sense, but what Microsoft is offering with Mango appears to be a step beyond what Apple offers in iOS. And that's more than enough multitasking for countless millions of consumers, if Apple's sales figures indicate anything.

Read: Windows Phone 7.5 Mango hands-on preview

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I wish other sites such as Engadget and Gizmodo would cover this beta. This beta needs more publicity and those fanboy sites are ignoring these cool new features! They need more exposure!

Has anyone tried to "tip" them off?

norseman said,
I wish other sites such as Engadget and Gizmodo would cover this beta. This beta needs more publicity and those fanboy sites are ignoring these cool new features! They need more exposure!

Has anyone tried to "tip" them off?

I tried to tip em, but they just gave me the reach around.

To me, speed is king. At my job you can get suspended for being caught using your phone. I get in and out without being caught or questioned. Every OS has its strengths... And wp7's is simplicity and speed.

I just cant wait for the voice to text side of things.. I cant spell at the best of times, now my phone will be able to help me when needed lol.. Then again how good will it be.. Voice to text has never been very good on systems, getting better and better but still not fab IMO

windows95isg8 said,
....

You can test it out by using the speech recognition in Windows 7, or by calling xbox live support.

Both of these products/services use the same voice technology.

Users won't have access to pure multitasking in the Android sense

Multi-tasking 'in the Android sense' is a bit deceptive as well, and something that truly needs to be addressed so that users understand how Android works, and why its 'multi-tasking' needs a serious overhaul.

Android does multi-task, but there are a few major pitfalls to how it handles background applications and even how it multi-tasks essential services.

If you think you are going to flip between Google Earth and even the browser on most phones, you are sadly mistaken.

Android has a very basic virtural memory model, and thus, you are limited to active phone RAM for everything that is running on the phone.

Background Applications have virtually no say in how important they are, and have to continually restart themselves to 'appear' to be still active.

When Android goes to run a process, even if it a background sync process, if there is not enough RAM, Android starts killing running applications, which means they are not running, or have to restart which is a drain on the performance and battery. The 'terminated' applications also lose data and often their login states as well.

What is really stupid is that essential and 'core' features of a phone can be terminated. As most people know, the shell is often terminated to free RAM, which causes the long icon loading when you go back to it.

In addition to the shell, the messaging/SMS/MMS service is often terminated, and users miss messages when it is not running or RAM availability puts it in a continual restart state.

And the craziest of all is the phone 'App' itself can be terminated to free RAM. I have many times been on a call, and docked my phone in my car, and because the 'Car App' loads and sucks a lot of RAM, have had Android kill off the Phone App, terminating my call.

Just jumping between the browser and another app is often enough to have one keep getting closed, forcing you to reenter information or lose data. The browser 'tries' to fake this, as when it restarts it reloads the page it was at when it was closed by Android, but if you are filling out a form on a website, and go to your contacts or open Skype to get a phone number, and then flip back to your browser, the form data you have entered is gone, and often the 'login' to the website is gone as well as the browser has been restarted.

So ya, Android has multi-tasking, but without a real virtual memory system or way to keep processes active in low RAM situations, it is vitually worthless.

What is insane, is that the average computer users no longer had to worry about running out of RAM or an OS randomly closing applications in a 'multi-tasking' environment going back to at least Windows 3.0, where it would use the HD and at the very least warn the user that the OS needed to close the application and give the user a chance to tell it 'no' or 'save' the data before this happened.

And why people put up with this on Android, or Google seems to think this is a proper way to handle applications is freaking insane.

You're exactly right. It handles memory very much the way PocketPC/Windows Mobile did. I used Wisbar Advance in order to better visualize and manage running apps because of the way multitasking was handled. Android is really no different and, as you said, is misleading. The best thing Android has going for it is that it's all about customization. If that's a person's biggest reason for going with Android, then that's pretty lame. "Making the device mine" serves no functional purpose. What can you DO with the device, that's the important thing. As for the apps, well, they're coming. Fast. Once Mango is deployed, the variety and strength of the apps that will burst onto the Marketplace will easily match those on iOS and Android and, I'd bet, will quickly outclass them.

thenetavenger said,

What is really stupid is that essential and 'core' features of a phone can be terminated. As most people know, the shell is often terminated to free RAM, which causes the long icon loading when you go back to it.

In addition to the shell, the messaging/SMS/MMS service is often terminated, and users miss messages when it is not running or RAM availability puts it in a continual restart state.

And the craziest of all is the phone 'App' itself can be terminated to free RAM. I have many times been on a call, and docked my phone in my car, and because the 'Car App' loads and sucks a lot of RAM, have had Android kill off the Phone App, terminating my call.

I've been using an Android phone full time since February and I have never had the "phone" app or messaging app ever close on me. Not even once. Nor has my wife's. Nor her sister's. Maybe your phone closes those apps a lot but I have never seen it.

ScubaDog said,
The best thing Android has going for it is that it's all about customization. If that's a person's biggest reason for going with Android, then that's pretty lame. "Making the device mine" serves no functional purpose. What can you DO with the device, that's the important thing.
You sound almost like an Apple/iPhone fanboy there!

thenetavenger said,
...

I <3 thenetavenger

The multitasking model in WP7 is awesome. Saw the sessions from Mix2011, and amazing.
Microsoft really engineered something great with background agents vs 'true' multitasking.
I like that I will get all the multitasking beauty, without needing a 'task manager'.

day2die said,

MS Lose32, you sound almost like an Android fanboy there!
If I'm an Android fanboy because I like the customizability of Android, then thank you! I'll take that as a complement!

I have to say that absolutely dig the WP7. It's simple to use and fast. My only complaint would be lack of certain apps. Bonus for me is the XNA/Silverlight coding!

I cant wait for the next version, it's what it needs the sooner the better.

Northgrove said,

Sorry. It's called the Windows Phone 7.

Ross from "Friends"? That you?

Whats going on with the super grammar police? You obviously knew what he meant. Oh and its actually Windows Phone. The extension is just the version. Don't believe me? Restart your phone.

0veR said,
I realy dont like Win7Phone. I hope in future it will be better.
You won't like it until you understand that it's Windows Phone 7.5, not Windows 7 Phone.

Abhinav Kumar said,
You won't like it until you understand that it's Windows Phone 7.5, not Windows 7 Phone.

I have Samsung with Win7 on it and it realy sux. I'm not even useing it.

0veR said,
I realy dont like Win7Phone. I hope in future it will be better.

Well, what features do you think are missing?

0veR said,

I have Samsung with Win7 on it and it realy sux. I'm not even useing it.

Sucks how? Care to actually name features instead of just bashing with nothing to back it up

0veR said,

I have Samsung with Win7 on it and it realy sux. I'm not even useing it.

Well that's where you're going wrong. There is no official version of Windows 7 for phones. However, there is a fantastic operating system named Windows Phone 7 for phones.

Abhinav Kumar
You won't like it until you understand that it's Windows Phone 7.5, not Windows 7 Phone.

Callum said,

Well that's where you're going wrong. There is no official version of Windows 7 for phones. However, there is a fantastic operating system named Windows Phone 7 for phones.

Seems to be the international nitpicking day today. Naming it the Windows Phone 7 is serious business despite the subject already being about that, so there's no risk of confusion.

0veR said,

I have Samsung with Win7 on it and it realy sux. I'm not even useing it.

Then send your Samsung to me. Apparently those with half a brain aren't capable of using such a device, particularly since they still think it has Windows 7 on it. And if you don't like it, why not keep you thoughts to yourself and go elsewhere? You serve no useful purpose here. Troll.

0veR said,

I have Samsung with Win7 on it and it realy sux. I'm not even useing it.

So you bought a crap phone from a crap vendor and some how it is Microsoft's fault? I have a LG Optimus 7Q (Q standing for the slide out qwerty keyboard) which hasn't had a single problem - fast, reliable, every update working absolutely flawlessly and a battery life so good it makes the hair on my neck stand up on end. Sorry mate but you chose a crap phone that is why you had a crap experience - nothing to do with Microsoft or Windows Phone 7.

Abhinav Kumar said,
You won't like it until you understand that it's Windows Phone 7.5, not Windows 7 Phone.

And he won't like Windows Phone 7.5 until he realises that it isn't Android or iOS - it is a distinct operating system in its own right and thus requires an openness to new ways of doing things. It is amazing that most of the hate and bashing towards Windows Phone 7 seems to come not from iOS fanboys but Android fanboys.

0veR said,
When i said i have Windows 7 on phone it means that i have OS for phone devices by Microsoft called Windows Phone 7 trolls.

LOL your such a faker.. who gets a windows phone and hates it.. you are either a huge noob that just buys stuff without even looking at it or you just don't even own or used a windows phone and just trying to troll here to convince people that are thinking about switching to windows phone to stick with android/ios/BBOS..

learn how to research a device before you buy.. if there is a certain aspect that you dont like then that is to bad but if the phone just "sux" then you are a horrible consumer.

Lachlan said,

LOL your such a faker.. who gets a windows phone and hates it.. you are either a huge noob that just buys stuff without even looking at it or you just don't even own or used a windows phone and just trying to troll here to convince people that are thinking about switching to windows phone to stick with android/ios/BBOS..

learn how to research a device before you buy.. if there is a certain aspect that you dont like then that is to bad but if the phone just "sux" then you are a horrible consumer.


I was expecting it will be awesome troll.