AT&T Showcases Three New Windows 'Mango' Phones

On the eve of Microsoft's Build developers conference in Anaheim, AT&T Monday announced it will ship three new smartphones this fall built on the software giant's Windows Phone 7.5 -- codenamed "Mango" smartphone operating system -- and will be one of the first Windows Phone distributors to update existing users.

Although the star of the Build conference will undoubtedly be the highly-anticipated technical previews of Windows 8, Microsoft (NASDAQ: MSFT) has its future in mobile competition riding on Windows Phone 7.5, so AT&T's (NYSE: T) pre-show announcement is key to both companies' mobile strategies.

Microsoft shipped the final "released to manufacturing" (RTM) version of Mango to phone OEMs and distributors in late July.

According to Microsoft, Mango, the first major update to Windows Phone 7 since it was released last November contains some 500 new and updated features, including Internet Explorer 9.

Coming to AT&T's lineup are two Windows Phone 7.5 devices from Samsung -- the Focus S and Focus Flash -- as well as the HTC Titan, an AT&T statement said. Additionally, AT&T said it will be one of the first smartphone vendors to update existing Windows Phone 7 devices already in customers' hands to Mango.

"We're taking our leadership to a whole new level by getting the Mango update to all existing customers and rolling out awesome new Windows Phones," Jeff Bradley, senior vice president of devices for AT&T Mobility and Consumer Markets, said in a statement.

The HTC Titan will feature a 4.7-inch screen, run on a 1.5 GHz CPU, and will have an 8-megapixel camera with dual LED flash.

Meanwhile, Samsung's Focus S will have a 4.3-inch Super AMOLED Plus display, 1.4GHz processor, 4G-capable speeds and will feature front facing 1.3-megapixel and rear facing 8-megapixel cameras.

Finally, the Samsung Focus Flash will have a 3.7-inch Super AMOLED screen and run on a 1.4 GHz processor and a 5-megapixel camera plus front facing camera, AT&T said.

AT&T gave no ship date for the new phones or for the Mango update except to say they will be out this fall.

Stuart J. Johnston is a contributing editor at InternetNews.com, the news service of Internet.com, the network for technology professionals. Follow him on Twitter @stuartj1000.