Yes, most of us want Windows Phone 7 to be very different from Windows Mobile. And Microsoft promised that it will, indeed, be different — closer to the latest generation of Zunes than to a Windows Mobile 6.x phone. But it comes with a price: Chances are owners of Windows Mobile 6.x devices won’t be able to upgrade to Windows Phone 7 software.

Up until recently, it looked as though there was a chance of upgrading; as Microsoft’s UK Mobile Business Group Director Alex Reeve said, it’s up to their “hardware partners to think about.”

But now, news comes out that owners of HTC HD2, a new Windows Mobile 6.5 device that seems more than capable of running the new software, won’t be able to upgrade to Windows Phone 7 software. Furthermore, according to APC, Microsoft’s general manager for mobile communications business in the Asia-Pacific region, Natasha Kwan, none of the current phones have what it takes.

“Because we have very specific requirements for Windows Phone 7 Series the current phones we have right now will not be upgradable,” she said.

This doesn’t mean that Windows Mobile 6.x owners will be left with dead-end devices, as Microsoft is supposed to continue support for them under the name Windows Phone Classic. But if you’re interested in upgrading to Windows Phone 7, you’re treading on unstable ground, no matter which Windows Mobile device you own.

Tags: microsoft, windows mobile, windows phone 7