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Microsoft Information Leaker 'Exiting the Game', But Not Without Spilling More Beans

· Mobile Zone
A reliable source of Microsoft-centric information leaks, MSnerd has announced he is exiting the arena.  But before he goes, he's decided to answer any and all questions related to Microsoft and their place in the industry in a Q&A session on Reddit.  Of particular interest are the topics of Silverlight and potential Windows Phone 'Apollo' upgrades for 1st and 2nd generation Windows Phone users.

Silverlight

Rumors have been swirling for some time now that Silverlight might be on its way out of the Microsoft product line.  However, MSnerd says that Silverlight will continue to be utilized in three areas:

  • XBox 360 apps
  • Windows Phone 7.x apps
  • Line of Business apps

While a v6 of Silverlight is not currently on the books at Microsoft, moving forward, Silverlight should essentially be a hybrid of the capabilities of Silverlight 4 and 5.

Certain Silverlight technologies will continue to be used more broadly. Silverlight smooth-streaming is being adopted across the industry to serve video to non-Microsoft platforms as well. PlayReady is also being implemented on 3rd-party platforms as it is currently the best alternative to the Apple-only FairPlay DRM system. Microsoft is evolving DeepZoom for use beyond Silverlight & the same is true for PivotViewer.

Windows Phone

As I previously wrote, there has been some debate as to whether or not Windows Phone 7 devices would be eligible for the Windows Phone 'Apollo' upgrade once it's released.  However, MSnerd says that all current Windows Phones will receive some subset of 'Apollo'.

The carriers are the primary obstacle in the US. I hear Microsoft is pushing hard for a Mango-like delivery schedule, as are Nokia & HTC.  Some Apollo features will be exclusive to the 3rd-gen devices expected to be released this fall on the MSM8960 platform.

And what about the future of Windows Phone, and the possible integration with Windows 8?

MSnerd expects Windows Phone to become as good as iOS and Android, capability-wise, by the end of this year and moving forward.

Integration with Bing, Office, Windows & Xbox will be the best Microsoft has ever done in that respect to date. In other words, nowhere near as good as how Apple does things.

During the Reddit Q&A session, MSnerd revealed that he does not work for Microsoft, or any of their partners or contractors.  So while he has been a reliable source of information leaks in the past, all of this should be taken with a grain of salt.  Here's hoping another relentless information seeker picks up the torch, lest we all sit and wait for Microsoft's official releases.

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