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1Better Web Browsing

Microsoft has made it clear that the Internet is going to play an important role in its upcoming “Mango” update. In fact, the company said that when users surf the Web, they will be able to engage in a “hyperlocal” search of content, as well as take advantage of Bing’s many services, including Music Search and Voice.

2A Friend-Focused Model

Currently, when users try to engage in discussions with friends via text or Facebook, they need to go to those respective applications. However, Mango will let people center conversations around people, rather than conversations, which means they can have those discussions on, say, Facebook, and then text, all from within the same conversation thread. It’s a nice addition.

3Better Social Networking

Since social networking is becoming more important to users, Microsoft has added Twitter and LinkedIn feeds to contact cards in Mango. Moreover, users can check in to locations via Facebook from the software. Microsoft also said that the Facebook integration includes “face detection software” to help users tag photos.

4Multitasking

Multitasking has been one of the most desired additions to Windows Phone 7, and it looks like it will be coming to devices this fall with “Mango.” The multitasking option does what most users would expect: allows them to switch between apps and run programs in the background. It’ll work similarly to Apple’s iPhone multitasking.

5Better E-Mail

Though users with a single e-mail address won’t necessarily see major changes in Mango, those who currently have multiple e-mail addresses will. According to Microsoft, the update will include a new feature called “Linked inbox,” which allows users to have all their messages from multiple e-mail accounts funnel into a single Inbox. Apple added a similar option with the launch of iOS 4.

6Internet Explorer 9

As mentioned, Microsoft will be improving the browsing experience in Windows Phone 7. Even better, the company will be bringing Internet Explorer 9 to the platform to facilitate that. The browser, which recently launched on the desktop, is arguably the best version of Internet Explorer ever launched. And it should make for a much better browsing experience on Windows Phone 7-based devices.

7A Nice, New Quick Cards Feature

Part of Microsoft’s strategy with Mango is to make searching for content as appealing to users as possible. To achieve that goal, it has brought a new “Quick Cards” feature to the operating system that will provide a brief tidbit of information related to a movie, product, event, or place, when people search for them with their devices. Microsoft said that Quick Cards will also list apps that might be related to the search.

8Groups Galore

To help improve the chances of people communicating with a group of people at once from the platform, Microsoft will also add a feature to Mango that will let users see updates from, and send messages to, an entire group of people. The service will work with text messages, e-mail, and instant messaging, the company said.

9A Market Focus

Across the board, it’s clear that Microsoft is thinking about its competition with the Mango update. It has added new elements from iOS, Android, and even BlackBerry OS to make it a more worthwhile option for consumers and enterprise customers alike. It has also added new options, like its communication options, that set it apart from the pack.

10More Vendor Partners

Microsoft has been criticized over the last several months for not inking enough deals with vendor partners to offer more Windows Phone 7-based devices. However, with the help of Mango, the company has signed partnerships with several more companies, including Acer and Fujitsu. The company also said that Samsung, LG, and HTC will deliver Mango devices. Is this a sign of good things to come in the Windows Phone 7 ecosystem?