At a Mobile World Congress keynote this afternoon, Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer and corporate VP Joe Belfiore showed off a number of new features for Windows Phone 7, including improved multitasking, IE 9 for phones; and better connections to Office documents and Xbox. Along with Nokia CEO Stephen Elop, they made the case for Windows Phone as a platform. Ballmer said the first update to Windows Phone would be shipping in early March, with features like cut and paste. Later this year, he promised multitasking as expected. In addition, he said the company would be shipping Internet Explorer 9 for the phone, complete with hardware graphics acceleration and HTML 5 support. He also promised full Twitter integration into the “hubs” experience on the phone. Belfiore showed an early build of a version later this year, starting with a new version of the Office hub, which already includes corporate connections to SharePoint, will now let consumers and small businesses connect to the SkyDrive service where people can store and edit documents online. This includes access to your own documents or to shared documents. It seems quite useful. He also showed IE 9, which he said had better standards support for things like HTML 5 while taking great advantage of the hardware. He said the core browsing engine on IE would be the same on the phone as on the PC, and showed the “fish IE” demo that worked much faster than Safari on the iPhone. Other demos included a mock IMDB… [Read full story]
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