Windows Phone 7 Launching in Europe on Oct. 11, U.S. Debut Coming a Month Later

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Microsoft is holding a press event in London on Oct. 11, which unconfirmed reports indicate will be the launch date for the first devices running Microsoft Windows Phone 7 in Europe. A U.S. debut supposedly isn’t scheduled until November.

As is typical, the invitation to the Oct. 11 event doesn’t say what’s going to be announced, but information leaking out of carriers says that this will be the day the first smartphones running Microsoft’s new mobile operating system will hit the market.

Asus Windows Phone 7 SmartphoneOther sources, however, say the actual launch of new products in the U.K., France, Germany, Italy, and Spain won’t be until October 21.

What About the U.S.?
Those in the U.S. are apparently going to have a longer wait. According to an unconfirmed report, the official launch for Windows Phone 7 in this country is going to be November 8.

It is not currently known why there is such a wide gap between the two launch dates, or why Microsoft’s new operating system is debuting first outside of its home country, but it may be out of the software giant’s hands.

The timing for phone releases is almost always controlled by wireless carriers. If AT&T and/or T-Mobile aren’t ready to launch their first Windows Phone 7 models until November, then that’s when the launch will be, and there isn’t anything Microsoft can do about it.

Microsoft has not confirmed any of these dates, and will only say that the first smartphones running its new operating system will be on the market in time for the holiday shopping season.

More about Windows Phone 7
Despite its name, this new smartphone operating system has little in common with its predecessors. It will have a completely different user interface and won’t run applications written for the earlier versions nor will any current models be upgradeable.

Its focus has moved to consumers, and its UI emphasizes social networking, pictures, games, etc. It has also been redesigned to be controlled with a fingertip.

Windows Phone 7 PreviewJust about the only significant similarity between old and new is that both include Microsoft Office Mobile and support for synchronizing with Microsoft Exchange.

The first smartphones running Windows Phone 7 are being produced by HTC, LG, and Samsung.

The wireless carrier AT&T has committed to Microsoft’s new operating system in a big way, and T-Mobile USA is expected to release at least one model, the HTC HD7.

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