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MIX11: Multitasking, faster app switching and deeper integration coming with Windows Phone 7's Mango update

MIX11: Multitasking, faster app switching and deeper integration coming with Windows Phone 7's Mango update
With the protracted roll out of the platform's first two updates still fresh in the mind, Microsoft has detailed the features on board for Windows Phone 7's next major refresh, dubbed 'Mango'.

The firm made the splash during its MIX11 conference in Las Vegas, informing developers that they will be party to a beta release of Mango's featureset before it reaches consumers.

Building momentum

Speeding up the platform appears to be Microsoft's main target.

As well delivering faster app switching (an aim the most recent update also had at its core), Mango will serve up app multitasking for background processing, audio and file transfer.

This doesn't appear to be what's generally regarded as 'full multitasking', but it is a significant step forward from the current approach, where only Microsoft apps are able to function in such a way.

Deeper integration with third party apps is also on the cards, allowing developers to make better use of live tiles – a feature much pushed by Microsoft in promotional material, but, to date, scarcely used by most developers.

That's a theme that runs through to the greater access to core features such as the camera and motion sensor library that's been proposed, specifically designed to aid augmented reality apps.

Rovio and co.

Microsoft is also keen to talk up developer support, flying in the face of recent criticisms that have been laid at the company's door.

As well as new apps from the the likes of Skype, Spotify, Layar, Qantas, Amazon Shopping and Kik Messenger making an appearance, Microsoft also revealed that Rovio's Angry Birds will hit Windows Phone 7 on March 25.

The franchise, which is already available on iOS, Android, Symbian, and webOS, amongst others, recently surpassed total downloads of 100 million.

[source: WinRumors]

With a fine eye for detail, Keith Andrew is fuelled by strong coffee, Kylie Minogue and the shapely curve of a san serif font.

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