Mango WiFi sharing to require drivers and feature hardware, carrier restrictions

Sep 28, 2011

With Mango finally rolling out as an update to some handsets like the HTC Trophy Microsoft is finally coming clean with some more details on the Mango update and new features. The WiFi data sharing feature is one that we knew was coming , but were light on details on what the feature would entail. As it turns out there are some restrictions to the feature that will mean some folks can’t take advantage of the sharing capability inside the phone.

The first restriction is a common one in that the carrier has to support the WiFi tethering feature. This is common on all carriers and all devices, assuming your tether legally. The carrier will charge you extra for the tethering. Two other features aren’t common or welcome. The first is that the WiFi tethering feature requires the devices that connect to the Mango smartphone be using specific network hardware. Why exactly this is enforced isn't spelled out considering there are no such limitations on other smartphones.

To use WiFi tethering the other devices must be using the Broadcom 4329 chipset. Microsoft says that this is the chipset that is in use in many handsets today and will be inside future devices too. Phones using the Broadcom 4325 chipset will get no Mango tethering love. The last thing is that the tethering feature will require drivers and it will be up to the device manufactures to provide those drivers since they are not part of the update.

[via Ars Technica]

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