updated 11:05 pm EDT, Wed August 24, 2011
WP7 Mango has carrier-enabled Internet sharing
Microsoft might have more hidden in its plans for Windows Phone 7 Mango with a discovery late Wednesday that it has a hidden mobile hotspot feature. While not exposed for everyone, and possibly no one officially, an Internet sharing section lets users share a 3G or 4G link over Wi-Fi for up to five people, much like Android, iPhones, and BlackBerry 7 devices. The code is in at least the gold master build (7720.68) and could exist on all production Windows phones.
Well-known ChevronWP7 contributor Rafael Rivera confirmed the code and speculated that, like Apple, the feature depended on a carrier profile that enabled it. Most carriers object to letting customers tether or use a hotspot out of the box and often want to test the feature first before they enable it and start charging subscribers.
Many Mango features are public, such as multitasking, the IE9-based browser, and deeper voice control. Whether or not all of those are exposed to users isn't evident yet. Even the now shipping IS12T, the world's first Mango phone, doesn't have all its features readily available.