WM7 Rumour Explosion: Two Versions, New Name, First Hardware

As Mobile World Congress - and presumably Window Mobile 7 - careens closer and closer, we're going to hear a lot more of this. Today's batch? Business and consumer versions of the OS, a sexxxy new name, and possible first hardware.

WMExperts' post is essentially a digest of everything they think they know from a variety of sources, including this very site. Even as a summary, though, it's pretty huge, and the rumours sprawl from totally ridiculous to fairly credible, so here are the meaty bits:

• Windows Mobile 7 won't be marketed as Windows Mobile 7. We sort of knew this already, since Microsoft has been marketing Windows Mobile and "Windows Phone" since the announcement of 6.5. But it's not even going to be that, apparently. The new name? "Seven".

• There will be two versions of the OS: one for OEMs and businesses, a stripped-down that's being referred to in development as Business Edition; and one media-oriented version for consumers, tentatively called Media Edition. Business edition will be focused on enterprise tools, like collaborative document editing, while the media edition will be focused on, well, media.

• If we see Seven at MWC, it won't be a full product - we'll see HD video playback, a Zune-like media interface, and some of the rest of the UI, but not all of it. This sounds odd! But the rumour consensus is that the OS won't hit phones until late 2010, so it's plausible that they're just not done yet,

There's nothing earth-shattering here, and most of these rumours just prompt more questions. Perhaps the juiciest part of this whole mess, though, is the rumoured hardware from LG and HTC. What's so great about the LG Apollo and HTC Obsession, assuming they actually exist? Well, seeing as they're supposed to be Seven launch devices, they represent the new baseline for Windows Mobile phones. And this baseline is high: WMExperts reports both have 1GHz+ Snapdragon processors, 3.7-inch AMOLED screens, and 512MB to 1GB of RAM. In other words, Windows Mobile 7's dumpiest handsets will be gutsier than anything you can buy today - something that will get less and less impressive the longer Microsoft waits to release this thing.

Anyway, if you're still feeling a little lost as to what on earth WinMo 7 may or may not be, WMExperts' breakdown is worth a read. [WMExperts]

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