MobileTechWorld has done some digging and found a recent job posting for Microsoft, specifically for their 'Windows Mobile 7 Communications group' which is seeking to "... bring social networks to life by integrating them into the core experience of the phone".
Now none of this should come as a surprise per se — social networks are the current and next big thing on smartphones. Combined with what I refer to as "personal GPS" (i.e. not just for driving) and you have a method for near universal awareness of location (i.e. Google Latitude), status (Facebook), thoughts (Twitter) of all you friends, family and colleagues.
What of course is missing currently from Windows Mobile is a way to integrate all that information into "...a single hub on the phone" as his job ad rightly points out. (See this mockup video for what Microsoft probably intends).
It would seem natural for this "social hub" to be combined with Microsoft's future cloud-location-service called "Orion" (you heard it here first), which will provide aGPS services for all future Windows Mobile 7 devices, including extremely fast signal locks via various methods (trilateration, WiFi networks, GPS) in ...the storage platform (Unified Store)" a possible reference to Mesh. Finally, the team seems to be interested in defining API's for 3rd party services to build off of for seamless fusion with the core Microsoft is providing.
The somewhat bad news is that this seems to be a recent job posting, meaning WM7, at least in this regard, is still behind a bit from being anywhere near finalized. On the other hand, Microsoft seems serious (if not late) in attempting to redefine social interaction on smartphones. We can't wait.
Read the full job description after the break.
“Social Networks” and “Mobile Phones” are two rapidly evolving socio-cultural phenomena that deeply impact the way in which people interact with each other. How would you like to be at the confluence of these phenomena – not as an observer but as someone who is defining the course?
The Windows Mobile 7 Communications group is building experiences on the phone that present your content – friends, pictures, messages, events – to you in immersive and engaging ways. Our vision is to bring social networks to life by integrating them into the core experience of the phone. For example imagine seeing all the newsfeeds from all the networks you care about in a single hub on the phone. Or imagine the phone instantly telling you what your friend is doing and where he is when you get a call from him.
To realize this vision and build these experiences it’s important to have a solid, well-thought out foundation. This is where the “Models” team comes in. This team owns the storage platform and the developer story for all the social content on the phone – friends, photos, newsfeeds, messages, events, etc. Our aim is to build a “Mobile Social Platform” that provides rich APIs to both internal and external applications and to not only enable but also inspire them to build compelling social experiences.
We are looking for a driven, self-starting and a highly technical program manager who can design this platform. We expect the PM to be able to quickly ramp up to the existing technology – the storage platform (Unified Store)and the APIs (POOM, SODA). Since there are several WM7 teams developing social experiences, the PM will work with these partner teams, understand their requirements and translate them into features for the Models team. The PM should be able to evaluate and consider technical details such as how best to store the data, how to expose it apps, and what the performance trade-off of the various options are as he/she is designing the feature.
The vision of WM7 and especially the Communications team is ambitious. We are not building yet another cool phone; but one that is truly personal and relevant. Yes – the competition is stiff; but it’s exceeded only by our desire to win. Come help us build this build this epic phone.