Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

Summary: Microsoft is prepping to begin pushing out the Mango update to Windows Phone, possibly as soon as September 27.

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In preparation for the rollout of the "Mango" operating system update for existing Windows Phone users which is expected this week -- mostly likely starting on September 27 -- Microsoft officials are laying the groundwork.

The Windows Phone NZ site broke the news on September 26 that Microsoft apparently would allow developers working with the near-final Mango bits to move straight to the Mango release-to-manufacturing (RTM) version of the operating system. Microsoft officials confirmed the news -- via a Tweet -- a number of hours later.

Microsoft originally had told developers to make multiple copies of their "NoDo" operating system and data because they would have to roll back to NoDo in order to get the RTM version of Mango from their carriers. Microsoft delivered the RTM bits to handset makers and carriers in late July for their testing.

Last week, Microsoft officials said that carriers around the world would begin rolling out Mango in the next week or two. They also said to watch for Microsoft to begin updating again the "Where's My Windows Phone Update" site so that existing Windows Phone users can track where their carriers are in the update-delivery process.

Several sites are reporting that here in the U.S. that AT&T could begin rolling out Mango to existing Windows Phone users starting on September 27. (I've heard no word about Verizon's update plan, nor when Verizon will add more Windows Phones to its stable. For now, Verizon still offers only one Windows Phone, the HTC Trophy 7.

Update: Some sites are reporting that Verizon might start rolling out the Mango update on September 27, too. I have to say I'm skeptical, but hoping my skepticism is misplaced.

Will there be much of a difference between the near-final Mango bits and the RTM bits? Microsoft officials have been coy when asked. There have been a couple of features, like tethering support, which have been unearthed in recent months but that are not currently supported in the Mango developer release.

Announcements by various handset makers of ew phones preloaded with Mango have been trickling out over the past few weeks. Most of these new phones are expected to begin shipping starting in October.

Mango (Windows Phone OS 7.1) includes an HTML5-compliant IE 9 Mobile browser; third-party application multitasking; Twitter integration; and Windows Live Messenger integration, new Bing search capabilities and other new features. All eyes will be on Microsoft and its partners to see if they can more quickly and completely get Mango out to customers after the ongoing problems that plagued the NoDo operating system refresh.

Update No. 2: Just in case it's not clear, even though Microsoft is making it easy for those who got the Mango bits on their phones by various means, the company is still not advocating that users jailbreak their phones. The official word: “We encourage people to use their Windows Phone as supplied by the manufacturer to ensure the best possible user experience. Attempting to unlock a device could void the warranty, disable phone functionality, interrupt access to Windows Phone 7 services or render the phone permanently unusable.” That said, it seems those who got access to the developer version (7712) WP Mango bits "by whatever means necessary"  should be OK in moving straight to the final Mango release.

Here's the word from WP7 Product Manager Cliff Simpkins

As of the morning of September 27, Microsoft had updated its "Where's My Windows Phone" status page to show that all U.S. carriers except Sprint are now in the "scheduling" stage for the Mango update. (Sprint is still "testing," according to the page.) This stage can take up to 10 days and is followed by a staggered "delivering" stage that may last several weeks. Outside the U.S., all carriers (except Telefonica in Spain) are in the "scheduling" stage for all handset models. Update: Microsoft changed the "scheduling" status to "delivering" for almost every handset and carrier a couple of hours after the new status page was posted.

Microsoft is advising users to update their Zune client software to 4.8 to prepare for the rollout.

As of September 27, Microsoft also has "Mango-ized" and rebranded its WindowsPhone.com portal, launched a Web-based version of its Windows Phone Marketplace and added a new check-in application based on Bing, called Scrapbook.

Topics: Telcos, Microsoft, Mobility, Operating Systems, Software, Windows

About

Mary Jo has covered the tech industry for 30 years for a variety of publications and Web sites, and is a frequent guest on radio, TV and podcasts, speaking about all things Microsoft-related. She is the author of Microsoft 2.0: How Microsoft plans to stay relevant in the post-Gates era (John Wiley & Sons, 2008).

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51 comments
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  • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

    I am looking forward to this update: particularly the new Groups function, and the Bing Vision and Music and Local Scout features. I will plug the phone into the PC first thing Tuesday morning to see what happens.
    cantbeme
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      Good News
      As of the afternoon of Tuesday Sep 27 ???Where???s My Windows Phone??? page is updated with the status - Delivering update from all Mobile Providers.
      levmik2000
  • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

    All the WP7 news/info/rumor sites are saying Verizon releases tomorrow. Not sure how you missed it.
    mcquacken
    • Because we're never sure when Verizon plans on doing anything, update wise.

      @mcquacken
      Rumor is all we have to go off you.
      William Farrell
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      @mcquacken
      There is no actual confirmation regarding this from Verizon, but I think at the same time it could happen, because if you look into Verizon's CEO comments recently, they are paying a lot of interestin Windows Phone 7, which is converse of their comments about it when WP7 was launched last year. Their VP Mobile at that time said there is not need for newer operating system, and Verizon already have iPhone, Android and RIM as major. Things have changed at Verizon it seems and I think you may see an update tomorrow morning all of sudden. I can tell after using the beta for more than a month, it is a killer platform.
      Ram U
    • verizon

      You're right. I did miss that. And given how unfriendly Verizon has been to MS around Windows Phone, I'll be very surprised (though pleasantly so!) if Verizon starts rolling it out tomorrow, too... I will add a link on that rumor to my post. Thanks a lot. MJ
      Mary Jo Foley
      • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

        @Mary Jo Foley <br><br>Wait... So you're saying Verizon is playing favorites? (just kidding, don't answer that. Too obvious). What is completely awesome is the amount of crow they will eat in a few short months. Hopefully, this will get 'airtime' on blogsites, too. As a person with the number "9" in their Xbox Live ID creds, I have some background in not just being a fair weather fan, and am enjoying the rise to success based on sheer Microsoft dedication. This isn't a case of partnership plays, it's what Microsoft has set it's sights on. Once that is determined, it's 'good luck' to competitors. It's 'lunch time" and MS is hungry.
        TechNickle
  • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

    I will be surprised too. In fact, considering Verizon's marriage to Android, I'm surprised they even carry WP or even the iPhone.

    All you ever hear them talk about is how "amazing" Android is, and all the stupid stuff you can do to either raise your data usage or kill your battery faster.
    The one and only, Cylon Centurion
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      @Cylon Centurion

      Android is everything you don't want in a phone. A phone should be simple to navigate, fast, easy to use and most of all STABLE! WP7 does all of this and much more. VZW would be smart to add more WP7 and get on board with the future.
      Rob.sharp
    • Verizon's marriage was one of necessity, not love

      @Cylon Centurion They had to marry one. Windows wasnt ready and they shunned the iPhones terms...that left them with only Android.

      But seriously, I think they will try them all out and the one that nets them the highest ARPU will be the one they push. So far, that is iPhone and iPhone only.
      otaddy
  • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

    Someone still cares about WP7?
    xSteven777x
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      @xSteven777x, well not yet, we only have 7 talkbacks including yours (now 8 including mine). Apparently, it looks like you're one of those who cares since you commented on a WP7 blog. :)
      TheFilipinoFlash
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      @xSteven777x <br><br>YEP.. More people than you could fathom. It's only a matter of time, and Microsoft has proven itself with the XBox that once they decide on a market, they take it. Sure, maybe not tomorrow, but they will, eventually. And all you can do is post 'me too's" against a reigning giant. It's sad to watch, at times, as you haters post against the inevitible. It's like watching a scary movie, and yelling "don't go into the woods"... aww.. too bad, so sad. But it was fun to watch as another would be hero stood up against the undying force. A valiant effort, but forgotten by scene two.
      TechNickle
      • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

        @FuzzyBunnySlippers I have absolutely nothing against WP7 but your post just sounds like fanboy talk. Time will tell if it is a success or not but just because MS decides they want to own the market doesn't make it a forgone conclusion that they will. Do you not think they want to own every market they enter?
        non-biased
  • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

    Someone still cares about rehashed/outdated/regurgitated (pick one) comments?
    mykem
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      @mykem
      Please read the post above yours!! You are now number 9 and I am number 10. See, interest just keep building!!! Thank you for playing!
      eargasm
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      @mykem
      Please reade the post above yours! You are Number 9 and I am number 10!! The interest just keeps coming! Thank you for playing!!
      eargasm
  • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

    I cannot wait for Mango, it is going to be amazing. The new features as well as improved speed are always welcome, but what I really can't wait for is Nokia's windows phone.
    MarcXW
    • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

      @MarcXW
      I expect the Nokia hardware to absolutely obliterate the competition as it always has.
      kstap
  • RE: Microsoft sets the stage for its Windows Phone Mango rollout

    any word on when this "Pre-update" is going to be available?
    Atain