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Windows Phone 7 Update Pushed out Globally

The "Mango" upgrade to Windows Phone 7 is being pushed out through mobile carriers.

The "Mango" update to Microsoft's Window Phone 7 has, until now, been available to just a fraction of users. That's now changing.

As of yesterday, Microsoft blogged, "We’re fully opening the spigot" to Mango updates, reaching out globally to provide the much-anticipated software that adds capabilities like mult-tasking and Internet Explorer 9.

In late September, Microsoft initiated the Mango releases, but explained at that time that the updates would be rolled out to only 10 percent of users, with broader releases planned in the coming weeks. The gradual approach was taken because Microsoft has to coordinate with hardware manufacturers and their firmware updates. Moreover, service providers have final control over the releases. Now, it appears that only a few service providers have issues with the Mango release, described as "Build 7720."

The carrier Orange in Europe is still working on technical issues that are delaying Mango updates, explained Eric Hautala, general manager of customer experience engineering at Microsoft. He added that Telefónica in Spain is just starting to schedule updates for LG Optimus 7 phones. Operator update schedules for the United States and abroad can be accessed at this Windows phone update page.

Some Windows Phone 7 users will also get additional firmware updates on top of the Mango release. Whether or not a firmware update is coming depends on the user's mobile phone carrier, device model and country location, Hautala explained.

The actual update is accomplished by plugging a cable into the phone and a primary update PC or Mac after receiving an update message, according to Microsoft's "Update Central." Users need to have Zune software installed for Windows PCs or Windows Phone 7 Connector for Apple Macs. The software establishes a primary synchronization connection between the phone and the computer. The primary update computer holds all of the phone's update history, so Microsoft recommends using that machine for Windows Phone updates.

A trick to get Windows Phone 7.5 right now will work for those who are patient enough to try it. However, it's not necessary now that Mango is broadly released.

Some users apparently have experienced issues with disappearing keyboards after the Mango update, according to this developer forum thread. However, it's hard to find that complaint listed at the Microsoft Answers forum for Windows Phone.

For those users experiencing update issues and getting specific error messages, Microsoft offers a tool to fix the situation, which is described in this Microsoft Knowledge Base article.

About the Author

Kurt Mackie is senior news producer for the 1105 Enterprise Computing Group.

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