Sure, I was a little dubious at first that Microsoft would be announcing Windows Mobile 6 earlier than expected. Perhaps part of it was a "French publication" breaking the embargo early that led them to just go ahead and tell everybody to start talking about it. In any case, the internet is all abuzz over it today instead of the February 12th official launch date.
Read on for a massive round-up of reviews, screen shots, and all the WM6 Links you can shake a stick at.
Update: Here's Engadget's photo gallery of WM6 Pro
The Big Pieces
First off, you should know that rather than referring to "Smartphone Edition" or "Pocket-PC Edition", Microsoft cleaned up the naming scheme a bit. Now we have:
- WM6 Standard for non-touchscreen smartphones.
- WM6 Professional for touchscreen smartphones.
- WM6 Classic for non-smartphone Pocket PC Devices (stop snickering, they still exist)
So what are the big changes between WM5 and WM6? Well, not to rain on anybody's parade, but I wouldn't call any of these changes huge. On the other hand, I would call each and every one of them welcome
- Built-in Windows Update(!) - Will the carriers stand for this? I know that Palm spends months testing the most minor of bugfixes so the carriers won't have a bird.
- Built-in memory card encryption and the ability to do remote-wipes.
- HTML-formatted email (I don't want this, but others do).
- A neater feature is "SmartFilter," which automatically filters your emails as you type just like most contacts applications filter your contacts. SmartFilter also works on your music collection.
- Better Live Mail (nee Hotmail) integration, including contact integration.
- 320x320 Screen Resolution support - Palm, I expect a new WM Treo yesterday with this screen resolution.
- Windows Live goes out of Beta and will be built-in
- Direct Push now standard (has been for awhile on WM5, but I know some of you are still stuck without it)
- 3rd party software should still work fine - just in case you were wondering.
- Microsoft Office Mobile updated - now full edits documents on all editions of WM6!
- Pocket Internet Explorer to be faster, they're saying 30% faster - let's hope! Also new, "Mobile AJAX standards"
- Better Vista integration
- Enhanced Calendar, including a "ribbon."
- Improved Security
- Built-in VOIP(!) - no, not really, but they added support for it "under the hood", according to cnet.
- A ton of smaller tweaks, changes, fixes, improvements, etc.
Geek.com rolls in with some live-shots of the Standard version loaded up on a T-Mobile Dash. - Geek.com Geek News - First Impressions: Windows Mobile 6
PC Magazine: 4/5 - Windows Mobile 6: Full Review - Review by PC Magazine, plus a big gallery
CNet has the usual standard write-up, if you just want the news fix. - Microsoft to unveil Windows Mobile 6 | CNET News.com
Modern Nomads gives us the largest review - What will Windows Mobile 6 bring for the highly mobile people? - Modern Nomads
ZDNET has a nice rundown as well, including a large gallery - » Microsoft reveals Window Mobile 6 and we have all the details | The Mobile Gadgeteer | ZDNet.com
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