Now that we know the scoop about Mango and are just waiting for the RTM 7720, let’s talk future updates. Apparently there are two more WP7 version updates coming to us soon. The first is called Tango, and was unexpectedly announced at an MSDN seminar in Hong Kong.
Tango is a very scaled down version of WP7 aimed at lower-end phones for people who don’t want, or can’t afford the high end ones. This is mainly aimed at developing markets. It is supposed to retain the core aspects of smartphones, such as web searching, some apps, and other data-using features, but won’t be a full scale Mango experience. This seems primarily aimed at emerging Asian countries, some of which were left out of the Mango party. There is no word yet on what these low-end phones will look like, but I’m sure we’ll get more information soon.
Now let’s talk Apollo. There really isn’t a whole lot to talk about. Microsoft isn’t saying much, other than it is a major WP7 update (like Mango), or maybe it is actually the code name for Window Phone 8. Per WMPowerUser, “the main strong rumor is that it will use the same APX app format as Windows 8, and may represent the unification of the platforms, with Windows Phone 8 being ported to the NT kernel.”
It has been widely rumored that MS was going to connect Window 8 with Windows Phone 8 in a very strong way and it looks like that is in the works, with beta copies of Windows 8 flying around the internet. The Apollo update could be a cataclysmic update in the mobile OS wars. Now that WP7 has reached a point of stability and the features people wanted, it looks like they are really ready to take the OS to the next level. It is likely going to take a very powerful ARM processor to handle WP8 so I would look forward to significant hardware upgrades in WP8 phones.
With iOS5 and Ice Cream Sandwich coinciding with the release of Mango, hopefully MS can try to get Apollo out near the same time as iOS6 and Jellybean (or whatever Android ends up calling 5.x).
Are you psyched about the WP7/8 road map?
(image and my original source for this via Redmondpie)