Windows Phone 7 Hardware Requirements Confirmed, two WP7 Phones and an HTC HD3 Rumor

There were speculations about the hardware requirements of Windows Phone 7, about multitasking, which phones will get the upgrade and now at the Microsoft MIX10 conference all those nagging questions were answered.

Windows Phone 7 being a touch-operated OS, means that Microsoft will be very strict about the screen, though not as strict as we thought initially. At launch, the only available resolution will be WVGA (480 x 800) but as it turns out later HVGA (320 x 480) devices will also be available. The screens should be capable of sensing at least 4 contact points.

The requirements for the computational muscle are pretty strict too - either a Cortex CPU or "Scorpion", which is actually the application CPU inside the well-known Snapdragon processors. The minimum amount of RAM will be 256MB and there should be at least 8GB of flash storage.

There will be mandatory GPU acceleration with DirectX 9 support and video acceleration too - Windows Phone 7 will have native support for DivX versions 4, 5 and 6. The H.264 codec will of course also be supported, up to High Profile (the one used in Blu-ray and DVB digital TV).

The Windows Phone 7 also specifies the camera - 5MP at the least with LED flash and a hardware shutter. Most of the extra features are mandatory too - A-GPS, compass, accelerometer, ambient light and proximity sensor. The other three required hardware keys are Start, Search and Back.

Enough with the requirements, lets see the Windows Phone 7 devices, shall we? First off, the HTC HD2 won't be getting the WP7 update, it's been officially confirmed. We're not quite sure what exactly doesn't meet the specifications (it could be the built-in memory, the HD2 has only 512MB ROM, so maybe microSD cards do not count).

From the ones that will run Windows Phone 7, we've seen two so far: an LG side-slider with QWERTY - the LG Panther, and a new Samsung phone - the Samsung Slate. By new, we mean "it looks exactly like the Samsung i8910 Omnia HD".

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