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Microsoft: Windows Mobile 6.0 coming to T-Mobile USA in second quarter

The latest version of Microsoft Corp.’s operating system for mobile handsets, dubbed Windows Mobile 6.0, is set to become available in the second quarter. The OS will include security enhancements for enterprise and revenue-producing features for network operators, according to the software giant.
After an apparently extensive pre-briefing tour by Microsoft for customers, analysts and press, the embargoed announcement-really a simple test of restraint, violated by some excitable party-was leaked this week and details have flooded forth.
According to John Starkweather, a group product manager for Microsoft’s mobile and embedded devices division, the latest version of the mobile OS will ship in the United States first on new devices from T-Mobile USA Inc.
Whether network operators make the update available to owners of devices running the current version of Windows Mobile depends on the operator, Starkweather said last week on a visit to RCR Wireless News’ offices. That might depend on whether an operator uses the new OS to roll out a revenue-producing service, he said.
The operator-controlled, revenue-producing aspect of the new software followed what Starkweather said were “standing orders” from operators to OS vendors to help them generate increased data revenue.
The goal of the OS for mobile devices is to eliminate the difference between users’ PC experience and that on their handset, Starkweather said. Thus, for instance, Windows Mobile 6 makes e-mail available in HTML, which he claimed was a feature unique to the new OS.
Though Starkweather said there were “ten thousand” changes from Windows Mobile 5.0 to the new version 6, he pointed to security enhancements, the revenue-producing options for operators and better integration of calendar and e-mail functions as the primary improvements.

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