Big news from the Microsoft Windows Phone 7 camp is that the new OS will launch with a total of nine (9) new devices. The number of options is surprising, as it was thought that the actual number would come in at less than that for the initial launch.
Manufacturers producing the new handsets include Dell, HTC, LG and Samsung. While some carriers will offer more than one handset, no carrier will offer all of them at the start, or so we have been told. What might be most interesting is that Microsoft tells us that we can expect additional handset offerings in early 2011.
The biggest attraction of the Windows Phone 7 is the added integration of Xbox Live for Windows Phone 7, which will include achievements, leaderboards, avatars, and gamerscores on the Xbox Live platform. Of course, a variety of new games are planned for the platform, including some turn-based offerings that will offer gaming between the Xbox/PC and the Windows Phone 7 device.
The other big news is that Microsoft is confirming that Electronic Art’s mobile division will be supporting the platform as well with a number of titles. EA Mobile will be bringing a number of their popular titles, including Need for Speed Undercover, Tetris, The Sims 3, and Monopoly, to the Windows Phone 7 platform.
Microsoft is said to be looking at Windows Phone 7 as their attempt at a mobile gaming console in the short term. Microsoft has apparently cranked up the OS in many ways to appeal to buyers and compete with Android and iPhone, which control a big chuck of this market space. Early buzz is pretty positive and could be a draw for Xbox 360 owners.