Need to Know: Windows Mobile 6.5

Windows Phone 6.5

What to know what all the fuss is about with Windows Phone 6.5? Our handy cheat sheet should help you work out why it might be of business value to you and your organisation.

What is Windows Phone?

It's Windows Mobile by any other name Microsoft's marmite-like, love it or hate it mobile operating system. But the OS is now back with a vengeance with a new name and an even newer image.

The new OS boasts an enhanced, easy-to-use interface, with beefed up browsing capabilities and one-stop access to a range of Microsoft communications tools such as Bing, Mobile Office, Communicator and Windows Live among others.

When does it arrive on the scene?

Microsoft officially takes the wraps off the new OS today, as part of a worldwide launch it has been gearing up towards for some time.

What devices will it be available on?

A number of device manufacturers have already pledged their support for the new OS, although just how big that list is won't be clear until later today, following a press conference at the launch so stay tuned.

At the time of publication, European support for the new OS included Orange, Deutsche Telekom and Vodafone, in addition to hardware vendors Acer, HTC, LG, Samsung, Sony Ericsson and Toshiba.

Any other features of note?

One of the key features of Windows Phone that will be of benefit to both consumers and businesses is the My Phone tool.

Using this feature, users can back up and manage the items that matter to them on their phone, whether that is pictures, texts or other data. If the phone is lost of stolen, that information doesn't get lost or stolen with the device, meaning it can easily be restored to a new handset.

US users luck out compared to UK mobile fans, at least initially as they'll get a My Phone premium package that adds a few more bells and whistles to the offering.

Microsoft has confirmed European users will get the package too, although it hasn't said exactly when yet. When it hits these shores, we'll benefit from:

The ability to locate a phone's location on a map.

Remotely lock a phone.

Post an if found' message on the phone's screen.

Wipe data to secure it from authorised access.

Maggie Holland

Maggie has been a journalist since 1999, starting her career as an editorial assistant on then-weekly magazine Computing, before working her way up to senior reporter level. In 2006, just weeks before ITPro was launched, Maggie joined Dennis Publishing as a reporter. Having worked her way up to editor of ITPro, she was appointed group editor of CloudPro and ITPro in April 2012. She became the editorial director and took responsibility for ChannelPro, in 2016.

Her areas of particular interest, aside from cloud, include management and C-level issues, the business value of technology, green and environmental issues and careers to name but a few.