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Windows Phone 7 update incoming: Copy'n'paste but no multi-tasking

Microsoft has published details of the upcoming first software update for Windows Phone 7, although the date of arrival remains a mystery.

Frustrated Windows Phone 7 users itching for a software update still don't know when it will arrive, but at least they know what's in it. Microsoft has published details of the first WP7 update on its website.

Here's the good news: copy'n'paste functionality will be included, working in much the same way as it does on the iPhone. "Tap a word, slide your finger to highlight any additional text, then tap the Copy icon," explains Microsoft. "To insert this text in a message or app, just tap the spot where it should go, then tap the Paste icon."

Roll out the bunting! In truth, the omission of copy'n'paste from Windows Phone 7 was always baffling, considering the stink kicked up before Apple eventually included it in its iOS software.

Microsoft's site also talks about "faster apps and games", promising that the company has "whittled down the time it takes for apps and games to start up and resume". Which is fine, but falls short of the multi-tasking for non-Microsoft apps WP7 users have been crying out for.

Finally, the next software update promises a tweaked search function in the Windows Phone Marketplace: when searching for apps and games, you won't now also face a barrage of music results too.

Colour us slightly underwhelmed. Microsoft does say, however, this is a "peek at some of what's ahead", so hopefully there's more to the first Windows Phone 7 update than the features listed above.

The company has not announced a date for the update, nor has it shed any light on whether every WP7 user will get it at the same time. Android users frequently complain of the lag between Google releasing a new version of its OS, and their operator and/or phone maker actually making it available.

Here's hoping Microsoft has learned from that. Finally, the company hasn't mentioned bug fixes, but we're assuming the now-infamous 'phantom data' leak problem will be squashed in the update too.