很多人都在期待即将到来的Windows Phone 7究竟会是怎样的一个平台。据TG Daily作者Mark Raby提供的消息，它将是一个Windows Live Phone，并且会涵盖多种聚合功能，包括Music + Videos中心，将和zune进行整合；games中心，将和Xbox进行整合；Office中心，将整合outlook信息；People and Pictures中心，将整合进Windows Live的各项服务。
另据连线杂志Brian X. Chen的文章报道，NPD Group分析师Ross Rubin认为这是微软在向苹果和google看齐并发起竞争。微软手机操作系统市场目前仅占13.2%，特别是比起android来讲显得没有足够的竞争力。
Microsoft has shed some light on new details about its upcoming Windows Phone 7 platform, and it is incorporating its favorite word across all devices: “Live”
Windows Phone 7 will be able to connect with Xbox Live, Zune media, and other Microsoft features in a package called Windows LivePhone。
The features will be integrated into the various “hubs” that are presented in the main menu interface of the Phone 7 platform. For example, on the “Music + Videos” hub, users will be able to manage all the media content they have already stored on their Zune PC software.
Additionally, on the “Games” hub, there will be functionality with the Xbox 360 that allows users to, among other things, invite friends to an Xbox Live game through their phone instead of the game console. Though if you’re already in an Xbox Live game, the rationale for sending the invite on a phone seems murky.
The “Office” hub will include calendars that are synced with users’ existing Microsoft Outlook information, and the “People and Pictures” hub will bring up photos and contacts that are automatically brought over from other Windows Live services.
It really shows that Microsoft aims to connect Windows Phone 7 to Windows Live the same way Android connects users to their Google
The new mobile platform, which is a make-it-or-break-it move for Microsoft after Windows Mobile 6 and the recent Kin phones had less than stellar performance, is still due to start heading to phones this holiday season.
Microsoft on Tuesday announced new features for its upcoming mobile platform Windows Phone 7, including over-the-air Wi-Fi syncing and a feature to track a missing phone. The real message: “Suck it, iTunes and Android.”
When Windows Phone 7 becomes available later this year, customers will be able to download and sync content (such as music, video and photos) wirelessly, using a Wi-Fi connection to Zune software running on their PCs, according to Microsoft’s Aaron Woodman.
Additionally, Microsoft will launch Windows Phone Live, a free website for Windows Phone 7 customers to automatically publish their photos and sync their contacts, OneNote notes and other data.
“[Windows Phone 7] integrates experiences by consolidating common tasks and services around shared hubs that put the focus on what you want to do rather than putting the onus on you to move in and out of various apps,” Woodman wrote in a blog post. “All the stuff you’d expect is right where you expect it — and that goes for content and services that live outside the phone.”
The new Windows Phone Live site will also host a Find My Phone service, which will allow people to find and manage a missing phone with the ability to find the phone on a map, make it ring, lock it and erase its contents, all from their PC. This is comparable to a feature Apple offers through its MobileMe service for an additional fee; Microsoft says it will offer it for no charge.
With these moves, Microsoft is emphasizing Windows Phone 7’s over-the-air “cloud” strategy to compete with other mobile platforms. Many tech companies are offering online services to wirelessly manage content over the web. Google, for example, provides web services services for customers to automatically sync their e-mails, contacts and calendars over the internet to their phones.
However, Microsoft will have to move fast to stay in the smartphone game. Its once dominant Windows Mobile OS currently holds just 13.2 percent of the smartphone market and has been been steadily losing market share to competitors — most notably Google’s Android. The longer Microsoft takes to get Windows Phone 7 out, the more difficult it will be for it to regain the ground it has lost.
When Microsoft introduced Windows Phone 7 in February, CEO Steve Ballmer said the platform would blend personal media with Xbox Live gaming and third-party apps served through the Zune marketplace.
The company with a relatively weak cloud strategy is Apple. Critics have slammed the iPhone and iPad for still relying on a USB connection to sync content with iTunes. And Apple’s web service MobileMe has received criticism for being expensive ($100 per year) compared to Google’s free web services. Steve Jobs said his company was “working on it” during a recent All Things Digital Conference on-stage interview, suggesting that iTunes might soon receive a reboot with a focus on streaming media.
“You can sum up the most frustrating thing about being an Apple customer in three little words: ‘Connect to iTunes,” said Matt Buchanan, a writer of Gizmodo.
It’s clear the software giant is shooting at the cloud in order to target a major weakness of Apple and a major strength of Google. Microsoft is offering consumer-oriented cloud services that Apple lacks, while providing enterprise features, such as remote wiping or locating a missing phone, that are not built in to Android.
“Microsoft’s activities in the cloud are really key in terms of its competition versus Apple and of course Google,” said Ross Rubin, a consumer technology analyst at NPD Group. “While there’s certainly a lot of overlap with Google in terms of the places where they’re competing head-on — photo sharing, e-mail services, etc. — Microsoft has really integrated part of what Apple has sought to make a premium offering with MobileMe.”