Microsoft is planning to update its Windows Phone 7.5 operating system with a location awareness icon. The update, expected in the next few months, will add a new status icon to the top bar of Windows Phone 7.5, indicating when an app is accessing a phone's current location information. Microsoft revealed the change (similar to iOS and Android) in its Windows Phone documentation this week and confirmed the new icon in an email to us. "We updated the documentation to get in front of new devices that will have these features, which will be in market soon," explained a Microsoft spokesperson.
The update is expected to arrive preinstalled on new Windows Phone "Tango" devices, launching in the coming months. We took an early look at some of the software changes in Microsoft's new Windows Phone 7.5 update at MWC last week, including some MMS enhancements and restrictions for low-spec devices. Microsoft's documentation now references the MMS improvements, including the fact you can now attach a video, picture, voice note, or ringtone into instant messages too.
Microsoft says the update will filter down to existing devices after new handsets (designed for 256MB of memory) are launched. "After the new devices are out, we’ll start the process of working with mobile operators to bring an update to current customers," says a Microsoft spokesperson. If you're expecting to see the update soon then prepare for an unspecified wait. "It’ll be a few months before we have specifics on that roll out," Microsoft revealed to us, confirming that existing devices will not see the new features any time soon.
Location icon in image above used for illustrative purposes only