Windows Mobile 6.1 is officially out

Microsoft have finally released the expected update to the Windows Mobile OS for portable devices. The new 6.1 version doesn’t bring any ground-breaking changes but is a lot more useable with obvious iPhone influence.
 

 

 

  

   

The most significant changes to Windows Mobile 6.1 Standard (previously known as Smartphone) are:

New larger system font (Causes some third-party applications to render texts incorrectly)

The most significant changes to Windows Mobile 6.1 Standard (previously known as Smartphone) are:

  • New larger system font (Causes some third-party applications to render texts incorrectly)
  • Sliding Panel home screen (A scroll wheel is much appreciated now)
  • Threaded messages (Conversations-based as on the iPhone)
  • Number of characters left counter now available in the title bar (Nice and neat.)
  • Can’t mark messages as unread anymore (It’s a mystery to us.)
  • Multiple message select is available (good job!)
  • The default email signature now says "Sent from my Windows Mobile phone." (sounds iPhonish again)
  • Start button can either open the new "Recent programs" listing or the usual "All Programs" folder
  • Pocket Internet Explorer has a new Zoom feature (Compensating for the lack of a mini-map)
  • Copy/Paste text function (It was about time! Anyways, it’s available in Internet Explorer, Messaging, and Office only)
  • New Clock&Alarm menu in the "All Programs" listing for easier managing of Alarms
  • New "Managed Programs" item in settings for all apps installed remotely by your company Sys Admin

The Professional version of WinMo 6.1 doesn’t have that many updates.

  

However there are still some things such as:

  • Internet Explorer: You can Zoom Out to see the web page overview (It’s not available while the page is loading and the text is mostly unreadable, so it’s just a mini-map alternative.)
  • Internet Explorer: The "Text Size" menu is now "Zoom Level" menu (Resizes both pictures and text now.)
  • There’s a better native Task Manager and it’s more easily accessible (Can also be assigned to a hardware key and it also shows system processes)
  • New "Managed Programs" item for all apps installed remotely by your company Sys Admin
  • The Calendar still has the useless greyed-out "Reply" command all over (Hello, is there anybody there in Microsoft?)
  • SMS messages now show threaded as conversations
  • Replying text messages has a new instant-messaging-like interface
  • Can’t mark messages as unread anymore (For reasons unknown to mortals!)
  • Delete does away with entire conversations
  • The time the messages have been received only shows up if the message was received today

The Windows Mobile 6.1 won’t be available for direct purchase to existing devices. Instead manufacturers will take care to release it as a free update to selected device. It’s good to know that there are already several devices out there that will use the 6.1 version out-of-the-box. Among those are:

  • ASUS: New phones including the P320, ZX1, P560, M536 and updates for the P527, P750, M930
  • HTC: A new Touch Dual for the U.S. and updates for the AT&T Tilt, Touch by HTC, Mogul by HTC from Sprint, TyTN II
  • i-mate: 8502, 9502, 8150, 6150
  • Motorola: MOTO Q 9c, MOTO Q 9h global
  • Samsung: BlackJack II
  • Toshiba: Portege G810, Portege G910