WHAT'S COMING: The first phone with Microsoft Corp.'s new software, Windows Phone 7, will be in AT&T Inc. stores Nov. 8. More phones will follow quickly, both with AT&T and T-Mobile USA.
WHAT'S AT STAKE: Microsoft has been making phone software for a long time, but it's taken a back seat to iPhone, BlackBerrys and Android phones. Analysts say it really needs a hit to stay relevant in the field.
WILL IT CUT IT?: Early reactions say Windows Phone 7 is a lot better than the old Windows Mobile, but it's not necessarily good enough to distract those who want an iPhone.