Microsoft yesterday announced a mobile operating system for enterprise handsets, Windows Embedded Handheld. Set for launch sometime in the next six months and based on Windows Mobile 6.5, WEH was announced in conjunction with Motorola's ES400 Enterprise Digital Assistant. The ES400 is aimed at the enterprise user in field sales, field services, retail, health care and small and medium businesses. Steve Ballmer said yesterday that Microsoft's Windows Embedded Business is focused on extending the benefits of cloud computing to specialized devices.
"Windows Embedded Handheld is a new software platform designed to meet key line-of-business (LOB) scenarios and boost productivity of the mobile enterprise work force by enabling users to capture, access and act on business critical information where and when they need it," Microsoft said in a statement.
From the press release, it's clear that this OS is for employees rather than the business user. Motorola highlights the devices use in health care, retail and field sales and Microsoft describes enterprise devices as "the ones you see store employees using when you’re out shopping."
Expect an updated Windows Embedded Handheld platform based on Windows 7 technologies (Windows Embedded Compact 7) in the second half of 2011.