updated 06:30 pm EDT, Thu June 30, 2011
WP7 Mango camera app has button for front cameras
A discovery in the recently launched new Windows Phone 7 Mango beta has given support to beliefs the new OS will support front-facing cameras. Microsoft has added a new button in the camera app, unseen even in the initial beta, that switches between front and back cameras. A WPCentral contact, beyond showing the emulator, said that front camera hooks were allowed in Microsoft's official chassis specs.
Left unsaid with the leak was whether or not the extra camera would be used for more than just still photos. Microsoft's buyout of Skype gives it an obvious path to video calls but might not necessarily be ready for Mango's fall release. Support for faster 3G and LTE-based 4G in Mango would help support an emphasis on live video streams.
None of the leaked WP7 Mango devices seen so far, like the HTC Eternity, have give away plans for a front camera. Officially, Microsoft has asked developers to normally keep quiet on most aspects of Mango and won't confirm more than what it's said in public. This recently loosened up with a rule that developers can post some details and screen captures if they ask for permission.