Windows Phone Starter edition is officially official

Rumors have been floating since the big Windows Phone 7 Series announcement at Mobile World Congress that Microsoft would be offering a "Starter Edition" of Windows Mobile 6 aimed at least partially at emerging markets (see the original announcement by Bsquare). Up to this point all information on Starter Edition has been coming from "sources familiar with the matter." But Mary Jo Foley of ZDNet was able to coax a Microsoft mobile spokesperson into answering some questions.

Some quick details about Windows Phone 6 Starter edition:

  • Will be offered in multi-language versions
  • Versions with and without Microsoft Office Mobile will be offered. (Office Mobile 2010 will be made available to OEMs when it ships.)
  • Supports 2G (GSM), 2.5G (CDMA2000 xRTT, EDGE, GPRS), CDMA (Rev A, EV-DO Revision A), and TD-SCDMA radios. Engadget postulates that the conspicuous absence of HSDPA 3G is an attempt to encourage adoption of Windows Phone 7 Series devices internationally where 3G networks are substantial enough.

What are your thoughts on Starter Edition? [via ZDNet]

Phil Nickinson

Phil is the father of two beautiful girls and is the Dad behind Modern Dad. Before that he spent seven years at the helm of Android Central. Before that he spent a decade in a newsroom of a two-time Pulitzer Prize-finalist newspaper. Before that — well, we don't talk much about those days. Subscribe to the Modern Dad newsletter!

  • what are our thoughts? read every comment ever made about windows mobile for the past 10 years. i thonk that about sums it up
  • i suppose it can't hurt MS as Nokia is the only other real player in the emerging market smartphone um... market, but i don't really see the draw for people people in these regions. WM hardware is more expensive, and battery life is poorer than with Nokia smartphones sold in these areas.
  • Be interesting to see it on the budget MID market. If the SmartQ V5 had windows mobile (instead of wince) I would've picked one up.
  • I think that Windows Mobile is "suffocating" from new Microsoft mobile solutions roadmap. But the software development leader tries to give "the last breath" to old devices. There are two reasons to do this step: the first is to give an opportunity to device manufactures to develop cheap devices (because I think the system reqirment of Windows Phone 7 Series are so high) based on Windows Mobile platform; and the second reason is to kill WM slowly, give developers some time to migrate from one platform to another and not to lose their market.
  • Isn't this Starter Edition basically a WM6 without 3G but with different variations (e.g. with or without Pocket Office)? It sounds pretty much like an economically version of what we got now (i.e. WM 6.5.x with 3G). So is the current version with WM6 with 3G connection the "Professional" Edition?
  • is this a way for msft to give the winmo team something to do while the winphone team takes over? i guess msft are big enough to handle it, but it really does make a more complex story where a simple one would be stronger (at least for us in developed countries).
  • Bad idea. Nokia's got different OSs. But anytime you have to manage multiple redundant systems not only is the profit margin lower, end user frustration increases. There's only one version of Android. And it works on cheap hardware and expensive hardware. If a user wants to upgrade, it's because they want/need a faster CPU, better camera, etc. Not because the OS is dumbed down.
  • Hello, I think Microsoft Windows XP Starter Edition is designed to offer an affordable and easy-to-use entry point to the Windows family of products that is optimized for lower-end hardware, tailored to local markets, in local languages, and is compatible with a wide range of Windows-based applications and devices.