There’s a race going on, and much like any other high-profile race, everyone is watching this one. It’s between every manufacturer in the mobile industry, and they’re all racing to the same goal: to be the best. Some of them use different weapons in their race to the finish, but most have the same arsenal tucked away and ready to go. I’m speaking of the software, as manufacturers like Apple, HP, and Research In Motion all stick to the proprietary side of things. While we watch manufacturers like HTC, Samsung, LG, and other smaller companies all build the hardware to show off the software. For Microsoft, taking advantage of every manufacturer they can to bring Windows Phone 7 to market is the best strategy possible (and it may be working after all). But, it’s starting to look like the hardware may be what could start selling Windows Phone 7, and not the software.
HTC is a company that doesn’t mess around in the hardware department when they’re pushing the right phone to market. Handsets like the HTC EVO 4G and Nexus One stand out amongst the crowd. And, with rumors that the company is crafting a 16-megapixel camera into a future phone, there’s no denying that their strategy will stay intact for years to come. This is proven by the recently rumored HTC Eternity and Omega devices, which both will support Microsoft’s newest version of Windows Phone 7, better known as 7.5 or “Mango.”
And while current Windows Phone 7 owners, and perhaps some future hopefuls, are waiting to get their hands on the second large update to the mobile OS sometime before the end of 2011, I imagine that there are a few people out there who just want to get their hands on the Eternity or Omega for the hardware. The software is just an afterthought. As a refresher, the HTC Eternity is rumored to feature a 4.7-inch AMOLED touchscreen display, a wide-angle 8MP camera around back, and a 1.5GHz processor tucked away under the hood. While the HTC Omega is said to have a 3.8-inch Super LCD (SLCD) touchscreen display, that same wide-angle 8MP camera around the back, and the same 1.5GHz processor inside. And both handsets are said to be launching with Windows 7.5.
That hardware is amazing. Especially if they launch before 2011 wraps up. Of course, the smartphone market will probably look quite a bit different than it does now by then, but I think a 1.5GHz-powered handset won’t be as common as the 1GHz handsets we have now. And there’s nothing wrong with the hardware selling the software, or the software selling the hardware. It’s hard to make everyone happy, especially when it comes to finely tuning a specific device to showcase the hardware and software at the same time. But, if Windows Phone 7.5 is anything that Microsoft hopes it is, then this could be a time where hardware and software actually come together almost perfectly.
But that’s up to your personal outlook. If you’re not a fan of Windows Phone and have absolutely no aspirations to use it at any time in the future, despite the major upgrades coming to the platform, then the HTC Eternity and Omega probably don’t mean anything to you. And let’s face it, if you’re an Android user then you’re probably already expecting these two handsets to come out in one way or another, maybe with even better specifications, not too long after that pair launches. If the Eternity and Omega do indeed launch with those stats, it will be hard to ignore them, even if the smartphone market continues to improve as quickly as it does.
So do you think Windows Phone 7 is standing on its own, or will the hardware be what sells the software for the foreseeable future? And does that matter? Are you looking forward to the launch of the Eternity or Omega? And if you’ve been waiting for a worthwhile device to get Windows Phone 7, will either of these devices be the last straw? Let me know in the comments below.