Microsoft just took the lid of some of the changes you can expect to arrive with Mango for Windows Phone 7, detailing the operation of the new and improved Music+Videos hub.
First off, you’ll be able to set up and manage podcasts straight from your smartphone, without needing to use the Zune software on your PC. Sadly, for some reason this feature will be restricted to WP7 users in the US, at least for now.
Smart DJ sounds like Apple’s Genius recommendations, attempting to automatically build playlists for you. It will go through your local collection, as well as songs available through Zune Pass if you’re a subscriber. If you’d rather do things manually, you’ll now be able to create and save playlists right from your smartphone.
Playback options will be easier to configure, with buttons for controls like shuffle moved to the forefront. The mini-playback control will now feature expanding buttons to make it easier to interact with, and you’ll now find music controls on the lock screen as well.
Microsoft is tweaking the appearance of the hub, making changes like adjusting the brightness and opacity for artist images to try and avoid overshadowing any of the interface. You’ll also be able to use new artist images as a random background for your lock screen.
For the whole list, including Microsoft’s rationale behind making some of these changes, head over to its Windows Phone blog.