Modern smartphones are very good communication managers and can do more than managing the communications. There are many 3rd party apps that could leverage the power of internal APIs of these smartphones and extend the communication management into the boundaries of information collaboration.The users of these phones could utilize these apps running on their devices and use as a tool for collaboration.
Collaboration is more than communication. In communications scenario, two or more people just exchange the information, but collaboration is more than exchanging information. It involves the users to exchange the knowledge and other aspects of information that they provide to others in addition to the information that they exchange. As per Wikipedia, Collaboration is working together to achieve a goal. Collaboration is a process that evolves constantly and recursively until that common goal is achieved. For example in a classroom the collaboration between students and teachers is a finite goal set by that community as the graduation of students successfully. In order to achieve that goal, a teacher and student needs to communicate regularly, explore the opportunities to share that information in an effective manner and transfer of knowledge from teacher to student or student to student etc.
The modern smartphones such as iPhone, Android or now the defunct Windows Mobile, etc. could orchestrate this collaboration effort effectively, but they need additional apps and user effort to effectively use those apps to collaborate. With Windows Phone 7, especially the latest version of Windows Phone 7 (7.5 also known as Mango), Microsoft enhanced it further by seamless integration of various tools and providing powerful API that could be used to manage the communications and collaboration effectively. Out of the box a Windows Phone 7 comes with Microsoft Office integration with SharePoint Client, Twitter, Email, Calendar, Facebook and Windows Live integration with integrated search tools such as Bing, and Google. These tools bring power of communication and orchestration of a knowledge transfer, note taking capabilities into the scenario. And if necessary users could develop or download from the Windows Phone 7 market place, which further enhance these out of the box capabilities to fulfill their needs. With latest release of Windows Phone 7 OS (code named Mango), Microsoft enriched the Operating System that integrates with Windows Azure powered Cloud platforms. With the power of cloud integration, SharePoint integration, and tools such as email, instant messaging, texting, push notifications, live tiles, and Office, at the platform level, Windows Phone 7 set the bar high.
A collaboration manager should be able capable of providing synchronous and asynchronous collaboration. A synchronous collaboration is providing the facilities to execute tasks such as online meetings and instant messaging, live information, and an asynchronous collaboration should provide facilities to execute tasks such as shared workspaces and annotations, Push Notifications, Cloud Messaging. Windows Phone 7 empowers its users with these out of the box capabilities effectively. The capabilities of Live Tiles of Windows Phone 7 can bring a powerful features to present the information properly and immediately. Windows phone 7 not only provides these tools, but also can empower its user to collaborate with her/his team effectively 24×7.
An effective collaboration brings successful innovation to the practice and in order to achieve it in a fast paced manner the knowledge workers need power companion that could help and manage their collaborative tasks seamlessly and effectively. And Windows Phone 7 could fill this role very effectively.