At Mobile World Congress on Monday Microsoft CEO Steve Ballmer announced that the company will be pushing new features to Windows Phone 7 users including access to SkyDrive, multitasking and a new HTML5 browser.
Steve Ballmer, CEO of Microsoft: "Just in the near future in 2011 we will bring multitasking to Windows phones. Secondly and perhaps more significantly we need to give people the full web, the full internet on their phone, like they’ve come to expect with the PC. Well today I want you to understand that later this year we’re going to release a version of Internet Explorer 9 complete with hardware and other hardware acceleration to the Windows phone."
Because the browser is based on HTML5, website developers will be able to creat sites that feel like apps. Also, like iOS Windows Phones don’t display Flash videos, but the new browser will run them nativitely.
On the gaming side Microsoft showed a video of prototype technology that pairs a Windows Phone with Kinect game on Xbox. Since it was only a demonstration there are no specific plans to commercialize it, but the company wanted to show what was possible.
At the end of the keynote, Ballmer invited Nokia CEO Stephen Elop on stage to talk about the new agreement between the companies. Last week Nokia announced that it would phase out Symbian and start making smartphones that run Windows Phone software.
He said that the partnership is balanced because Nokia brings its brand and phone volumes, while Microsoft can help Nokia with breaking into the US market.