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Zune phone predictions

Microsoft's Zune digital music player may soon be joined by a phone - if patents submitted by Microsoft are anything to go by

Now the iPhone's been announced and is on its way, technology fans can turn their curiosity towards Microsoft and its rumoured Zune phone .

Flush from the success of its accurate iPhone predictions, Mad 4 Mobile Phones is picking through 12 of Microsoft's patents which could be related to the software giant's iPhone-challenging device.

The patents do suggest a phone-like device: one points to a technology designed to clean up ambient noise when speaking in a noisy area; another describes a 'real time language translation' tool.

Among the other patents picked out, details include:

  • A predictive text search function on an on-screen keyboard
  • Pressure-sensitive touch-slider controls
  • The accurate displaying of phone numbers
  • A slender and/or clamshell design
  • A health monitoring feature
  • Content on the phone being streamed to other device for consumption
  • An address book and alert functions, such as ringtones and vibrate
  • Web, email and other rich media reception

If these patents are for a phone, it's sounding quite iPhone-like, though that remains to be seen. Some of these patents may never reach fruition, but its fun to speculate.