So, Mobile World Congress is going on over in the beautiful city of Barcelona, and there, Steve Ballmer held a little speech about Windows Phone 7’s past, present, and future. Especially the future interests us, as a lot’s been planned for this year: copy/paste, hardware-accelerated mobile Internet Explorer 9, and, yes, multitasking!
Copy and paste is of course a feature that’s been in the development image in the SDK for a while now, and the feature will be pushed to Windows Phone 7 phones in early March, alongside a number of small fixes and patches, which, among other things, should speed up application load times. Not that my HD7 is in any way a slouch, but hey, faster is always better (except, you know).
After this update, there will be a much larger update later this year (no date) which will contain, among other things, Internet Explorer 9. This will be the exact same browser engine that you get on your desktop, including hardware acceleration of various HTML5 features (yes, I know HTML5 is just a subset etc. etc. etc. Get over it, it’s a good umbrella term).
Then there’s the big one: multitasking. Of course, like iOS before it, it’s not that WP7 can’t do multitasking (in fact, it multitasks all the time); it’s just that 3rd parties can’t make use of it, and that there’s no interface for it. This will change later this year: multitasking is coming to Windows Phone 7, and it’s basically an exact copy of webOS’ card metaphor.
Microsoft was clear to reiterate that we’re looking at a selection here, and that more stuff is coming besides these.