New Mango features revealed!

Ryan and Travis Lowdermilk from the Windows Phone Dev Podcast have revealed some new consumer-oriented features that will appear in the next major release of Windows Phone (version 7.5), codenamed Mango. According to the two, Mango will include two new Bing features—Bing Audio and Bing Video—as well as SMS Dictation (spoken text messages), on-device podcast support, and turn-by-turn navigation.

In their words:

Bing Audio allows you to search for music using your phone … Bing Audio allows users to hold up the phone to a song and identify it. [Similar to how Shazam works, apparently. –Paul]

Bing Vision will be a search service using the camera. So, you get this one-stop shop to scan barcodes, Microsoft Tags, QR Codes, Books, CD’s, DVD’s, and even text using OCR. Users could even scan products or images of products. Or, of course, the barcode using the camera.

Turn-by-turn navigation [includes] “voice guidance during driving directions”.

On-device podcast support.

SMS Dictation: [In Messages,] at the bottom of the screen on the Application bar is a microphone icon. Under the microphone icon, are the words “Speak”.

There is a lot more in the podcast, so do have a listen.

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64 Responses to New Mango features revealed!

  1. Hope the voice stuff comes to UK !

  2. Tim Smith says:

    The more news that comes out the more excited I get for mango. I just hope they don’t let us down on getting it out in a timely manner and we’re not in a situation where we’re forced to bypass them for the update.

  3. blkballoon925 says:

    Does SMS dictation mean it will support text-to-speech or speech-to-text?

  4. ironhalik says:

    If I had 100% certainty that there wont be any funny business with upgrading from 7 to 7.5 (new devices positioning etc – as samsung prolly would like) then I would pick up a mozart or optimus 7 tomorrow.

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  7. pastorwelker says:

    This all sounds great. I can’t wait to get it next year sometime :-)

  8. brentgv says:

    Wow. I’m excited to get my Trophy on Verizon this month. (((crosses fingers))) Now all this new jazz for 7.5? Color me smitten.

  9. roberthleeii says:

    everything i ever wanted in a phone.

  10. stevechadbourne says:

    Looks lovely but I’m still waiting for Bing voice search to work here in New Zealand 6 months after launch. Who’s betting that music search and turn by turn navigation don’t work outside of the US?

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  12. luxsphinx says:

    Those are some heavy hitters in the consumer world. The spoken SMS and turn-by-turn are my favorites. That’s partly because Bing Vision and Bing Audio are more of a convenience than new functions. I can scan barcodes with a choice of apps, type in a few lyrics from a song, or type what I read off of a DVD case and get similar results. Voice Turn-by-Turn is not really achievable any other way and spoken SMS (while very much a convenience) just adds so much ease of use in my situations.

    I simply can’t wait. With any luck, the update move smoothly and on time. If the stars aline properly maybe it will be a little early.

    Problems I imagine: 1) AT&T not liking the navigation since they like charging $10 a month for AT&T Navigator. 2) This update seems more complicated than NoDo, so there’s more for AT&T to go through and find issue with.

    • nicholas1029 says:

      For problem #1, Windows Mobile 6 had free turn by turn navigation. If I recall correctly, carriers did have the option to block that, but AT&T didn’t (Verizon did choose to block it, however). Even then, most Android phones come with free turn by turn now, and no one has blocked that yet.

      • Paul Thurrott says:

        When I asked about turn by turn in Windows Phone, I was told it was a carrier feature. So I guess we’ll see whether this is actually “in” Windows Phone or whether its something that the carriers can optionally enable and charge for.

      • lzandman says:

        I wonder if it makes sense for turn by turn navigation to be a part of the OS. Of course it would be nice to have a free solution built into your phone, but personally the only turn by turn navigation solutions I like are the ones TomTom makes. So I hope there will at least be a TomTom app for Windows Phone.

        Also I’d like support of offline maps, since using only online maps will eat away from your data plan and I don’t want to rely on 3G coverage. Especially during holidays, where roaming costs also apply.

      • nicholas1029 says:


        Well that stinks then. If it’s something carriers can enable, then I can picture AT&T charging $10 a month for that like they do with the current AT&T Navigator app. Microsoft really needs to get more Apple like and take a my way or the highway approach, not the current carriers are awesomesauce approach.

      • lippidp says:

        Yes, Bing on WM 6.5 includes navigation with no fees from AT&T. I am sticking with it for this and many other reasons.

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  16. thommck says:

    Love the QR/barcode integration with Bing. None of the ones I’ve tried seem to work that well.

    The audio search is a surprising feature considering how well Shazam does the job. I thought they were partners (due to the free usage of Shazam). Is this a punch in the face from Microsoft or does it use Shazam’s service in the background. It will be nice if it integrates with Zune, giving you a dynamic “Songs I’ve Bing’ed” style playlist

    • luxsphinx says:

      Actually, ShopSavvy has treated me well for bar codes, but I was surprised to find that the free AT&T Code Scanner is my favorite right now. It has scanned bar codes, QR codes, and data matrix codes almost flawlessly for me with only a few standard bar code products that it couldn’t find in stores – but I feel that has more to do with the products and almost nothing to do with the ability of the app to read and search bar codes.

  17. oslik says:

    Will iOS Bing app get these features too? :-)))

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  24. mediacastlex says:

    So much for native Podcast support not being high on a list of priorities, eh?? =p

    • Paul Thurrott says:

      The comments I’ve made about this feature previously are accurate: It was supposed to be included in the v1 release but didn’t make the cut for timing reasons. So this is likely a feature that was already “done” by late last year.

  25. dkb1898 says:

    Interesting, but just catching up to the competition or what it already had planned for Bing. Nothing earth shattering, yet! This is all good news, but I’m not sure these are any killer features that you can get on other platforms. I’m holding out hope some of those are still in the works…

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  30. I look at this list of features and think, wow that’s so cool. But then I remind myself that I live in Australia and it’s most likely that any feature that involves Bing or Speech won’t be available here.

    But hey, at least I’ll get Podcast support!

    Oh and the Windows Live Messenger integration hopefully too:

    • Paul Thurrott says:

      I’ve already confirmed the Messenger integration feature. It works like the SMS interface.

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  32. rjdudley says:

    Paul, any word if the barcode recognition will have an API usable by developers? D/ling the podcast now, sorry if that’s answered.

    • drewgreenwell says:

      I would think it would be similar to the search extras they were demoing before. They searched for a movie then swiped left and imdb showed up under “extras”. The api appears to allow for deep linking into the app (aka jumping straight to a movietrailer, bio page, etc)

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