Windows Phone 7 is a mobile operating system developed by Microsoft, and is the successor to their Windows Mobile platform. It launched in Europe and Asia on October 21, 2010, and is due to launch in the US on November 8, 2010. With WP7, Microsoft offers a new user interface, integrates the operating system with other services, and plans to strictly control the hardware it runs on. Microsoft unveiled Windows Phone 7 on February 15, 2010, at Mobile World Congress 2010 in Barcelona and revealed additional details at MIX 2010 on March 15. Windows Phone 7 was released to manufacturing on September 1, 2010, and the final SDK was made available on September 16, 2010.
Deutsche Bank estimated Microsoft's marketing budget for the Windows Phone 7 launch to be at least $400 million. In February 2010, a Microsoft press release listed the companies that would help make and operate Windows Phone 7.
Hardware (OEM) makers were listed as Dell, Garmin-Asus, HTC, HP , LG, Samsung, Sony Ericsson, Toshiba and Qualcomm; mobile network operators included AT&T, Deutsche Telekom, Orange, SFR, Sprint, Telecom Italia, Telefónica, Telstra, T-Mobile USA, Verizon Wireless and Vodafone.
HP later decided not to build devices for Windows Phone 7, citing that they wanted to focus on devices for their newly purchased WebOS.
The new OS has only a few recognizable apps-such as Internet Explorer and the rest is completely new. The Metro interface of WP7 has two striking elements called Tiles and Panorama. Tiles are giant app icons that can incorporate live data and Panorama means that most of the apps which allows users to swipe screens to the left to reveal more elements.
All the Windows Phone 7 handsets will feature three hardware buttons: a Windows button that brings the user to the desktop, a Back button that returns the user to the previous screen, and a Search button. The Friends Hub feature streams Facebook updates right into the OS. It aims to combine contact information from multiple sources-address books, Facebook, Windows Live.