Windows Mobile 6.5

Windows Mobile 6.5 was a stopgap update to Windows Mobile 6.1 intended to bridge the gap between version 6.1, that arrived in 2008, and Windows Phone 7 that was released in 2010.

Windows Mobile 6.5
Version of the Windows Mobile operating system
DeveloperMicrosoft Corporation
OS familyMicrosoft Windows
Working stateNo longer supported
Source modelClosed-source
Released to
May 11, 2009; 14 years ago (2009-05-11)
Kernel typeWindows CE
Preceded byWindows Mobile 6.1
Succeeded byWindows Phone 7
Support status
Unsupported as of January 8, 2013[1]

It was never part of Microsoft's original mobile phone roadmap, and has been described by its former chief executive Steve Ballmer as "not the full release Microsoft wanted" (which later became Windows Phone 7).[2] Ballmer also indicated that the company "screwed up with Windows Mobile", lamenting that Windows Mobile 7 was not yet available and that the Windows Mobile team needed to try to recoup losses.[3] Microsoft unveiled this version at the 2009 Mobile World Congress in February,[4] and several devices were supplied with it.[5] It was released to manufacturers on May 11, 2009; the first devices running the operating system appeared in late October 2009.[6] Several phones that officially shipped with Windows Mobile 6.1 can be officially updated to Windows Mobile 6.5.[7] This update includes some significant new added features, such as a revamped GUI, a new Today screen resembling that of Microsoft's Zune player with vertically scrollable labels (called 'Titanium').[8] WM6.5 also included the Internet Explorer Mobile 6 browser, with improved interface.[9]

Along with Windows Mobile 6.5, Microsoft announced several cloud computing services codenamed "SkyBox", "SkyLine", "SkyMarket".[10] "SkyBox" has been confirmed as My Phone,[11] while "SkyMarket" has been confirmed as Windows Marketplace for Mobile.[12] This version was designed mainly for easier finger usage.[13] Some reviewers have noted interface inconsistencies, with some applications having small buttons making them harder to operate using only a finger.[14] Whilst this version of Windows Mobile does not natively support capacitive screens, mobile manufacturers have been able to use them on their devices.[15]


In the months following the release of Windows Mobile 6.5, development shifted from Windows Mobile to its successor Windows Phone. As such no major upgrades were planned or released, although three minor updates; 6.5.1, 6.5.3 and 6.5.5; were made to satisfy consumers during the transition period. 6.5.1 brings larger user interface elements,[16] including icon based soft buttons (rather than text-based),[17] an updated contacts app,[18] native support for A-GPS,[16] improved threaded text messaging,[19] and performance improvements.[20] It was unofficially ported to several Windows Mobile phones.[21]

The second minor update was announced on February 2, 2010, along with the Sony Ericsson Aspen which was the first phone to use this version.[22] 6.5.3 continues the trend of attempting to provide a more finger-friendly user interface with several new usability features such as native support for multitouch; although device maker HTC Corporation created proprietary workarounds to allow multi-touch to work on some applications it installed on its HD2 handset (However, Microsoft applications on this handset, such as the Internet Explorer web browser, did not support multi-touch.[23]) and drag-and-drop start menu icons. Touchable tiles replaced soft keys.[24] Internet Explorer Mobile 6 also received some major updates including decreased page load time, improved memory management and gesture smoothing.[25] As with other updates it was unofficially ported to some other devices. Additional features include threaded email and Office Mobile 2010.[26]

The last minor update and the last released version is 6.5.5. It first leaked in January 2010, and was unofficially ported to some Windows Mobile phones.[27] The name Windows Mobile 6.5.5 has been applied to these newer builds, although this name remains unconfirmed by Microsoft.


Windows Mobile 6.5 has received negative reviews. Gizmodo criticized it for being a superficial upgrade from Windows Mobile 6.1 and noted that it is "just not enough".[28] TechCrunch described typing with the keyboard on the OS as an "absolute miserable chore" due to it being laggy and clunky.[29]

See also


  1. ^ "Windows Mobile 6.5". Microsoft Product Lifecycle. Microsoft Docs. Retrieved April 11, 2022.
  2. ^ "Ballmer: Win Mobile 6.5 an unwanted stopgap". MacNN. March 5, 2009. Retrieved August 11, 2015.
  3. ^ "Ballmer: We 'screwed up with Windows Mobile'". Computerworld. September 25, 2009. Archived from the original on October 1, 2009.
  4. ^ "Windows Mobile 6.5 walkthrough with Engadget (now with video!)". engadget.
  5. ^ "Browse and Buy Windows Phones".
  6. ^ "Windows Mobile: What's coming when - All about microsoft -".
  7. ^ "Updating your phone to Windows Mobile 6.5". Microsoft. March 4, 2010. Retrieved June 20, 2010.
  8. ^ Slattery, Brennon (October 6, 2009). "Windows Mobile 6.5 Arrives, Mostly Disappoints". TechHive. Retrieved August 11, 2015.
  9. ^ "IE 6 for Windows phones: Interface improved". c:net. Archived from the original on 2010-11-08. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  10. ^ "Microsoft set to unveil MobileMe competitor next month". Neowin. Archived from the original on 2009-01-20. Retrieved 2012-06-24.
  11. ^ "Microsoft My Phone beta – Microsoft".
  12. ^ "Microsoft announces Windows Marketplace and My Phone for Windows Mobile". engadget.
  13. ^ "MWC: Your Definitive Windows Mobile 6.5 Post-Release Guide – Pocketnow". Pocketnow. Archived from the original on February 17, 2009.
  14. ^ "Windows Mobile 6.5 UI a big improvement; more work needed". Ars Technica. February 16, 2009. Retrieved September 27, 2009.
  15. ^ "HTC HD2 Review on CNET UK". cnet uk. Archived from the original on November 11, 2009.
  16. ^ a b (July 20, 2009). "Windows Phone 6.5 build 21925 in video". Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  17. ^ "Latest Windows Mobile 6.5 build out". Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  18. ^ "windows mobile 6.5". Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  19. ^ "New Text Message Screen on Windows Phone 6.5.1". Pocketnow. Archived from the original on October 20, 2009. Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  20. ^ "Windows Phone 6.5.1 just become smoother". Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  21. ^ "Windows Mobile 6.5 Build 23409". Windows Central. WMExperts. Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  22. ^ "the::unwired – RELEASE: Microsoft introduces Windows Mobile 6.5.3 Professional for Windows Phones". the unwired. unwired. Archived from the original on May 23, 2012. Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  23. ^ "HTC HD2 Leo lacks universal multi-touch". KnowYourMobile. September 25, 2009. Archived from the original on January 3, 2010.
  24. ^ "Developing Widgets for Windows Phone 6.5". Retrieved April 27, 2010.
  25. ^ "What's new in Windows Phone 6.5.3". ZDnet. Archived from the original on February 4, 2010.
  26. ^ "Threaded Emails Demoed on Outlook Mobile in Windows Phone 6.5.3". Pocketnow. Archived from the original on January 10, 2010.
  27. ^ "WM6.5.5|101m|6.5 kernel|Full Roms By jjblaster3|upd 23529|translatable|16/Feb/2010". Retrieved June 20, 2010.
  28. ^ Herrman, John. "Windows Mobile 6.5 Review: There's No Excuse For This". Gizmodo.
  29. ^ Kumparak, Greg. "Windows Mobile 6.5 Review: It Still Sucks".