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Changes in Windows Phone "Mango": My Notes from the Field

I've written a separate article, Hands on with Windows Phone "Mango", in which I describe my general observations about the current, pre-release version of Microsoft's next smart phone OS version. But you may be wondering, on a point-by-point basis, what's changed between the first version of Windows Phone and Mango. And this document can help. It's not complete, in the sense that I can't possibly have documented every single change that's in Mango. And it's presented in raw notes form, pretty much as I originally composed it. My original intention was to use this as background for my own writing but as it grew in length, I figured it might benefit others.

So here it is: Alphabetical by app, many of the changes I've observed so far in Mango. I made this list by observing two Samsung Focuses side-by-side, one running the current Windows Phone version, the other running Mango.


Set has been renamed to All.

There is a new Vibrate Only option in "Sound" option for an individual alarm. And in addition to the 6 alert and 10 alarm sounds from v1, there are numerous new alarm sounds with unique names: Pure, Silk, Symmetry, Pearl, Mosaic, Lattice, Spring, Lantern, Jade, Curve, Ginger, Amulet, Willow, Two Step, Bounce, Shine, Beam, Glide, Hop, Flicker, Cruise, Sunrise, Haze, Jump, Starlight, Tribe, City, Bell, Agogo, Classic, Play, Believe, Glitter, Burn, Bling, Dance, Peace, Whisper, and Purr.


The Bing app, which is only available from the dedicated search button on Windows Phone handsets, has been significantly updated in Mango. There is a new application bar with [Local] Scout, Music, Vision, and Voice buttons and Music History and Settings menu items.

Local Scout. This new feature provides information about the local area, with Eat + Drink, See + Do, Shop, and Highlights pivots.

Bing Music. Essentially a Shazam copy, this utility will listen to currently playing music, analyze it, and then provide a link to Marketplace where you can purchase (Zune Marketplace) or download/stream (Zune Pass) the song, if available.

Bing Vision. Using the phone's camera, you can scan barcodes, QR codes, Microsoft Tags, books, CDs, DVDs, or text, the latter with international language translation capabilities. In the case of non-text items, the scanned item will be matched against retailer databases so you can purchase the item online. (Yes, it's Bing's version of Google Goggles.)

Bing Voice. This feature (which was available in v1) lets you search Bing using your voice and the phone's built-in microphone.

Search results now include an Images pivot in addition to the web and local pivots from v1. The News pivot is now integrated into Web in a separate results group, and there are new Related Searches at the bottom of the results list.


In v1, there were two pivots, Day and Agenda. In Mango there are three, Day, Agenda, and To-Do. The application bar buttons are identical, but the single menu item has been renamed from Calendars to Settings.

Calendar notifications (slice at top of screen) now include a Snooze drop-down.

Mango Calendar now supports multiple calendars from both Hotmail Calendar and Exchange/Office 365, but not from Google Calendar.

Mango Calendar now supports To-Do items from both Hotmail Calendar and Exchange/Office 365, but not from Google Calendar.

Mango Calendar now supports Facebook Events.

Calendar views and meeting cards appear to be identical between versions.

To-Do pivot includes application bar with New and Select buttons and Sort by priority, Show completed, and Settings menu items.

Settings. Mostly identical except that Hotmail Calendar and Exchange calendars now show all calendars, not just the primary calendar. There are two new Preferences items at bottom, "Show to-dos on the calendar" and "Only show Facebook events I've responded to".


No major changes detected. Some button text has been restyled in scientific mode (landscape view).

Camera + Pictures

The camera app has been nicely updated in Mango. A new arrow button appears on the previous image slider to make it more obvious that you can tap there. The still/video toggle is now a single button and not a slider switch.

When you switch to video mode, the large timer numbers appear immediately (as 00:00) and don't wait for you to start recording.

When viewing pictures, the application bar menu includes some new options. Add to favorites will add the current picture to your Favorites list. Auto-fix triggers a Spartan new Auto Fix mode with no really settings. You can cancel the operation, undo the fix, or save with application bar buttons.

Settings. This pane now works in vertical (portrait) mode if you're holding the camera that way. You can now save custom configurations with a new Save Settings option. And revert to factory with a new Restore default settings. Note that the Mango camera will not automatically save changed settings, however. Other settings appear to be unchanged.

You can disable the camera shutter sound in Ringtones + Sound settings.

Games hub

Restyled tile logo, still with animations.

Restyled hub, with gray background instead of green.

In v1, pivots were collection, spotlight ("what's new"), Xbox LIVE, and requests. In Mango, the pivots are collection, Xbox LIVE, requests, and spotlight. There is a now a application bar at the bottom with no buttons (a first, I think) and refresh and settings menu items.

Collection. New view style with smaller game thumbnails and textual name of each game on right. Can now see first five and a half available game titles, compared to four (and a bit of five and six) in v1. Games are still listed alphabetically.

Xbox LIVE. Pivot now includes an animated, 3D version of avatar instead of static bitmap from previous version. Xbox LIVE Gold members are noted next to Achievement points total (in gold text now). In v1, this pivot had a graphical representation of the most recent achievement and its name. Now, there are three links: Profile, Achievements, and Avatar and, to the right, two thubmnails for Friends and Messages. All except the avatar link to a separate multi-pane Xbox LIVE screen. Profile includes profile name, achievements, gold status, available Microsoft Points, [short] Name, Motto, Location, and Bio; a application bar at bottom includes "edit" and "refresh" buttons, the former of which lets you edit all of the Profile information for your account. Achievements lists total achievement points and then the games (and associated achievement points for each) you've played with most recent listed first; dive in to view game achievement lists and descriptions of each. Friends lists friends grouped by Online and Offline; ther are Add and Refresh buttons, the former of which triggers the "Find a friend" chooser for Gamertag searching. Messages displays any available Xbox LIVE messages; there are New and Refresh buttons, the former of which lets you create a new Xbox LIVE message.

Requests works as before, but no requests message is different: "No game or turn requests. Pick a multiplayer game and invite someone to play."

Spotlight. Most items in the what's new feed now displays a large thumbnail graphic. Text has been bumped up to be larger.

Internet Explorer

In v1, address bar with refresh/stop button at top and application bar with add, favorites, and tabs buttons and forward, share page, find on page, pin to start, and settings menu items. In Mango, application bar on bottom with refresh/stop button and address bar, and tabs, recent, favorites, add to favorites, share page, pin to start, and settings menu items.

application bar/address bar works in landscape mode now as well.

Tabs works similarly to v1, but is now a menu item, not a application bar button.

Recent replaces the history pivot that used to be available from the Favorites screen and includes the same delete application bar button.

Favorites works similarly to the Favorites screen in v1, but lacks the history pivot (now separately available as Recent).

Add to Favorites works identically, but rectangular "ok" and "cancel" buttons have been replaced with Metro-style round buttons, [check] and [x], or "done" and "cancel", respectively. The URL text box is now labeled as "Web address".

Share page and pin to start appear to be identical.

Settings. New on/off slide for "Allow access to my location" at top. New option, "Allow Internet Explorer to collect my browsing history." New website preference (Mobile version/Desktop version) option. New "Open links from other apps in" (the current tab/a new tab) option.

Lock screen

Basic look/feel is the same by default

Text "enter your password" is bolded/bigger on Mango


Hub layout has been changed. In v1, there were marketplace and featured pivots. In Mango, there are marketplace, apps, games, music, and featured pivots.

The hub includes a application bar with one button, Search. This application bar and button appear throughout marketplace and provides context-sensitive searching in some places.

The marketplace pivot includes a new item, podcasts.

Applications has been renamed Apps Marketplace and somewhat redesigned.

Games has been renamed Games Marketplace and extensively redesigned.

Music still links to Zune Marketplace and has not been changed.

Podcasts links to new Podcasts area (not called Podcasts Marketplace) with Featured, Top, New, Genres, and Featured pivots. Individual podcast screen include a large rectangular Subscribe button. Series settings screen includes Episodes (with default of 3), Playback order, and other settings.

Downloads and app updates appear to work similarly to v1, though those links are bigger in the marketplace pivot now.


The Windows Phone Mail app has been updated significantly in Mango (see below). The app's application bar has been changed: In v1, there were New, Select, Folders, and Sync buttons. Now there are New, Select, Sync, and Search buttons; there are also two new menu items: Folders (to replace the missing button) and Add email account/Link inbox (related to linked inboxes feature).

Conversation view. Messages from the same contact can optionally be grouped into a single, expandable conversation that is noted by an indented vertical gray line.

Linked inboxes. You can now arbitrarily link two or more email accounts and view the contents of multiple inboxes in a single view. You can mix and match between linked and unlinked inboxes, and have multiple instances of each. Any account types with email support can be linked. (Not Facebook.)

Settings. There are two new options here: Conversation (on/off) and In conversations, show replies and email from all your synced folders (check/uncheck).


The Bing Maps app now navigates to your current location on launch.

There is a new application bar button, Scout (for Local Scout), in addition to Directions, Me, and Search, and new menu items: Directions list, Search results, Favorite places, and Show/hide favorites.

Local Scout. As in Bing, this new feature provides information about the local area, with Eat + Drink, See + Do, Shop, and Highlights pivots.

Settings. There are some new options: Read directions aloud when tapping (On/off slider) and Rotates with my current direction/Always orient north.


As with other contact cards, the special "Me" card has been updated.

In v1, there was just a single pivot, What's New. In Mango, there are three: Profile, Notifications, and What's New.

Profile provides your picture and latest social networking update and three new links: Post a message, Check-in, and Set Chat Status. Post a message lets you choose between available social networking accounts (Hotmail and Facebook in my case). Check-in is a new Foursquare-style service that lets you select from a list of local places (restaurants, etc.) and "check-in" at one; it will be posted to your social networking accounts.  Set Chat Status triggers the common Set Chat Status picker from the People hub.

Notifications provides a textual list of social networking account notifications with small type. You can tap each to jump to the social networking post that triggered the notification and then perform different actions based on the post type, including tagging people in a photo (or viewing available tags), saving a photo to the phone, using a photo as your phone wallpaper, or adding a new comment.

What's New corresponds to the what's new feed that appeared on the Me card's one pivot in v1 and looks and works similarly.


In v1, just one pivot called conversations. Mango has two: Threads (the default) and Online. In v1, application bar had one button, new [new message] and a settings menu item. Mango has two, new and status (which triggers the Set Chat Status screen with available, busy, away, appear offline, and offline choices), and the settings menu item.

Threads basically replaces conversations, but can include non-MMS/SMS messages too. (Facebook chat, for example.)

Online says "tap here to set your chat status and see who's online" when your chat status is offline, as mine was by default. Change it to available and "checking who's online" appears and then "no one is online." List will populate with available contacts. This screen also includes application bar with new and status buttons and settings menu item.

New message. Screen is mostly identical, but v1 had two application bar buttons, "send" and "attach," and Mango adds a third, "speak". Tap this and notification appears at top with text, "Speech Data Usage. Allow Microsoft to use your voice data to provide and improve the service. By allowing access, additional features that use the network will be available to users. Learn more [link].  Accept and Decline buttons. On accept, phone says "say your message." Say the message and it tries to translate it to text. (This worked very nicely in my tests, actually.) Screen has go button, but you can just stop talking as well.

Settings. In v1, only one, for SMS center number. Mango has Facebook Chat and Group text sliders as well. (Off and On, respectively, by default.)

Music + Videos

Hub features the same four pivots, Zune, History, New, and (if any music apps are installed) Marquee.

There is now a application bar at the bottom of the hub with a single Play music button and a Search marketplace menu item. Previously, the Play Music button was on the left side of the screen.

Zune. This pivot has been restyled somewhat (is bumped up against left instead of centered) and has the same items as before: Music, Videos, Podcasts, Radio, and Marketplace. Music includes same pivots as before: Artists, Albums, Songs, Playlists, and Genres. Ditto for Videos: All, TV, Music, Movies, Personal. Podcasts, too: Just Audio and Video pivots. Radio appears identical. In v1, the Marketplace launched Zune Marketplace, but in Mango it simply goes to Windows Phone Marketplace, with the default view. (This seems wrong. I expect it to be fixed.)

Podcasts. When you subscribe to podcasts through Marketplace, you can manage series settings and unsubscribe from the podcasts area in Music + Videos.

Now playing, music. Screen has been redesigned with Back, Play, and Forward buttons at the top of the screen instead of the bottom. There are now Like, Shuffle, and Repeat mini buttons next to the album art (previously, you had to tap album art to find them). There is a new (and empty) application bar with many menu items: Play Smart DJ Mix, Share, More in Marketplace, and Save as Playlist. These each launch new Mango features. When you tap the song title on Now Playing, it brings you to the playlist screen as before, but now there is a Save [as Playlist] button on the new application bar.

Now playing, video. Screen has been redesigned with larger buttons and a timeline scrubber.

Settings. There are two new options: Include music from Marketplace in my Smart DJ mixes and Only download new podcast episodes over Wi-Fi.


The Office hub has been significantly updated in Mango and the individual apps have been updated from version 14.0 to version 14.5.

The Office hub has been restyled with new colors and a new layout. In v1, there were three pivots: OneNote, Documents, and SharePoint. In Mango, there are three, too: Notes, Documents, and Locations. There is a new application bar at the bottom of the Office hub that is dynamic and changes with each pivot.

Notes. The application bar on this pivot includes New, Notebooks, and Search buttons and a Pin New to Start menu item. Note rectangles are now purple not orange. The pivot no longer occupies two screen widths but instead scrolls up and down as you'd expect.

Documents. The application bar on this pivot includes New and Search buttons. There are multicolor rectangles representing Word docs (blue), Excel spreadsheets (green) and PowerPoint presentations (orange). These documents are culled from whatever locations you configure in the next pivot, with the most recently accessed documents at the top.

Locations. The application bar on this pivot includes a New button (for SharePoint only). There are three items in the Locations list: SharePoint, SkyDrive, and Phone. If you configure SharePoint (with Office 365 or whatever), the top link will be renamed to Team Site. SkyDrive, if configured, is mapped to the SkyDrive associated with your primary Windows Live account (as with Xbox LIVE); I don't see a way to change this. Phone represents all documents on the device.

Word, Excel, OneNote, PowerPoint. I haven't really explored what's new in each of the Office Mobile apps. There are new Share and Open Location menu items in each of the apps' application bar. Excel has larger Function and edit controls, and a new Autosum application bar button.

Settings. This interface has been completely restyled and no longer includes options for SharePoint and OneNote as in v1. There is a new Reset Office button that will "erase all saved Office settings, local files, and offline files Office will be restored to its default factory settings. Do you want to rest Office?"


New "search" and "new [contact]" buttons next to "all" pivot title

New application bar at the bottom of hub with "new [contact]" and "search" buttons, settings menu item

Groups - new feature, Family group created by default as example (but not populated; has text "Groups help you keep up with your family and closest friends. Tap the pencil icon to add someone to this group.")

Group card has application bar with two buttons, "pin" and "edit" (the pencil icon) and a "delete" menu item. Edit Group screen provides a Group name edit box, an "add a contact" link, and a list of suggestions (people with your last name, nicely). Add a contact triggers Choose a contact (the contacts chooser). There is a search button in the application bar at the bottom of this screen.

Contact cards. V1 had two pivots: what's new and profile. Mango has four: what's new, pictures, history, and profile. Pictures pivot includes a thumbnail, "[contact's] Albums," which loads that contact's albums in Windows Live and Facebook. History by default says "No recent conversations or calls with this contact" and has more link. This triggers a More History screen with "search Gmail", "search Office 365", and "search Google Apps" (on my phone). For contact that has history, there are headings like "last week", "two weeks ago",  and so on, and entries for email, phone calls, text messages, and more.

The Quick Jump List has a new globe button in bottom right (next to Z). But it's grayed out on my phone. International numbers?


Call History renamed to just History in Mango

There is now a Search button in application bar - triggers top-mounted search box and virtual keyboard for searching history. Link appears "search contacts for xxxx" where xxx is the search string

Call screen replaces "end call" and keypad buttons with buttons that more closely match the bigger speaker, mute, hold, and add call buttons; those buttons are just there all the time and are not triggered by a "more" button


Tile now animates the displayed photo and switches between available photos on the fly

In v1, there were three pivots: Photo galleries, Highlighted, and What's new. In Mango, there are three and one is different: Photo galleries, Favorites, and What's new.

There is now an empty application bar at the bottom of the hub with three menu items: Choose background, Shuffle background, and Settings. The first two were available in v1 hard to discover. (And tap and hold on the Pictures hub background no longer does anything.)

Photo galleries. In v1, there were all, date, and favorites items. In Mango, there are camera roll, albums, date, and people items. Camera roll displays the images taken with the phone's camera (previously in all, camera roll); there is a new Turn on auto upload menu item in otherwise empty application bar. Albums is the same as "all" in previous version. Date is mostly identical to same link in v1. People displays thumbnails for recent contact interactions first and then a Choose contact link.

Settings. Most options are identical but reworded somewhat. Two new options: Prevent accidental camera launch when phone is locked and Tap screen to take pictures.


The Settings interface consists of System and Applications pivots, as in v1.

New System settings include Battery Saver and (see below).

There is one new Applications setting: Background Tasks (see below).

Battery Saver. This screen notes, "Your phone can turn off some services to help preserve your battery. For example, you won't automatically receive email, and apps won't run in the background. You can still use the phone, send and receive text messages, and get your email manually." There are two options, both off by default: Always turn on Battery Saver when battery is low and Turn on Battery Saver now, until next charge. There is also three bits of information about the battery state: Remaining battery life, estimated time remaining, and time since last charge. This replaces Find My Phone (and in fact is still mistakenly titled Find My Phone). The two available options are the same as before but have been reworded in plainer language.

Background Tasks. This screen notes, "The apps in the list can continue to do things in the background, even when they're not open", and then "You don't have any apps that are running in the background." An Advanced button provides an identical screen and list.

Other changes in Settings include:

Ringtones + Sounds. You can choose whether to play a sound for the camera shutter.

Themes. The accent color orange has been renamed to mango.

Wi-Fi. Via a new Advanced button, you can manually enter the name of a hidden Wi-Fi network and connect to it.

Email + accounts. Mango now supports LinkedIn, Twitter and AT&T Address Book account types.

Lock + wallpaper. (Has been renamed from Lock & wallpaper.) You can now optionally display music now playing info on the lock screen. The password lock can now be required after different time intervals, so it's not always immediately on as in v1.

Keyboard. Many new keyboard languages are now available.

Region + language. Renamed from Region & language.

Ease of access. A single new option, Speech for phone accessibility (On/off slider) has been added.

Speech. This screen has been restyled and reworded but is similar. There is a new option for reading aloud incoming text messages with available settings including Off, Always On, Bluetooth and headsets, Bluetooth only, and Wired headset only.

Games. Two new options: Sync game requests (On/off slider) and Show game alerts (On/off slider).

Search. Many new options including Send location for Microsoft Tags, Allow search button from lock screen, and Allow Microsoft to store and use images from vision searches.


Initial, "out of box" setup of Windows Phone "Mango" appears to be identical to v1, at least for now.


Hold down power button, and instead of just shutting down, Mango slides down lock screen from top with text, "slide down to power off." Goodbye text is bigger

Start screen

Basic layout/look and feel is the same by default

IE icon is new (IE 9 style)

Pictures hub tile now animates in place and between different pictures

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