updated 10:55 am EDT, Wed March 30, 2011
Microsoft hires for Windows Phone Mobile Studio
Microsoft's defunct Kin Studio may come back as a slightly rebadged Windows Phone service. Job listings make mention of a Mobile Studio service for Windows Phone that would "redefine the mobile phone." Few clues are found directly in the listing itself, but it would entail a new interface and likely get away from the teen-focused theming from the Kin version.
The company had already hinted with the death of the Kin One and Kin Two phones that some of the experiences from their platform would carry on in the future. Kin Studio was often considered one of the few highlights of the short-lived platform and let users automatically upload photos and videos as well as back up core information from the device. It acted as a media sharing site, but it also served as a way of recovering content that isn't normally saved in the cloud.
Windows Phone already has rudimentary cloud support since it can optionally be set to upload photos to a SkyDrive, but the service doesn't give an easy way to show photos to others and doesn't include any other data.
A second posting for a since-filled spot has also shown that Office 365 should reach Windows Phone and could provide a true, web-based version of Office scaled to phone size.
The combination suggests Microsoft may stay competitive with Apple and Google in some areas. Apple has teased a MobileMe overhaul in the spring that many believe would turn it into a free service with a media locker. Google already syncs basic calendars and contacts, but its tentative Google Music service would give Android owners access to their audio collections from any broadband link.
Music access has persisted for a long time on the Zune platform as both the Zune HD and Kin have had Zune Pass on-demand streaming. [via ZDNet]