Next month's Mobile World Congress in Barcelona promises to be an interesting time for Microsoft watchers. While many people are expecting to see demonstrations of Microsoft's forthcoming Windows Mobile 7 operating system, others think the launch is going to be delayed until 2011.
Semiconductor news site Bright Side of News says it's spoken to a number of sources that have confirmed Windows Mobile 7 won't be launching this year. This would result in manufacturers choosing rival operating systems for their new devices.
However, ZDNet.com's Mary Jo Foley expects Windows Mobile 7 to be on public display at MWC – and blogger Long Zheng says he's "all but certain" WM7 will appear, pointing to Microsoft's MWC invitation that promises to explain "how the company plans to align its consumer vision and grow opportunities for the mobile industry as a whole".
In our last podcast of 2009, James Rosewell described 2010 as a "do or die" year for Microsoft's mobile business. "If Windows Mobile 7 is not a quality product then Microsoft might as well give up", he said. Pushing back the launch into 2011 would be a "complete disaster" and would mean Microsoft wouldn't be able to catch up with its competitors without buying one of them.