Yesterday, press reviewers from around the United States received a mysterious invitation from Microsoft to join the company in San Francisco on Monday, April 12 for a special unnamed and unidentified event. Many have speculated that the event is centered around another Microsoft phone platform. Not Windows Phone, mind you, but the mysterious project "Pink."
This speculation is correct. And while details about Pink are hard to come by—it appears to include at least two different devices running a non-Windows Phone OS that are targeted at text- and social networking-happy teens—I'm most curious about why Microsoft would bother with a side project like this while it's trying to get Windows Phone off the ground.
Details about the Pink project have been leaking through the blogosphere for over a year. There are two main phone format factors, codenamed Pure and Turtle, and they were designed by Danger, the company Microsoft had previously purchased for its Sidekick smartphone. This has led many to speculate that Pink is simply a next-generation Sidekick/Danger OS platform, which makes some sense.
According to the Wall Street Journal, the Pink phones will be offered via Verizon Wireless and will only ship in the United States, at least initially.
On a side note, some have openly wondered if the Microsoft event will also feature a peek at Microsoft's conveniently-timed Courier tablet, a bit of vaporware that began leaking online in the days leading up to Apple's iPad launch. As I noted early yesterday in the "Windows Phone Secrets" blog, that is not the case. Tuesday is all about Pink.
In related news, Apple revealed this week that it will announce plans for its fourth generation iPhone OS in a special event of its own, which will be held April 8. Apple has sold over 40 million iPhones in less than three years, and the fourth generation software—along with new iPhone devices—is expected sometime after mid-year.