5 Hardware partners have Windows Phone 7 handsets available at launch

Greg Sullivan, senior product manager for Microsoft, told Pocket-lint that Dell, Asus, LG, HTC, and Samsung will have Windows Phone 7 handsets available at the launch later this year.

That’s (at least) five launch handsets, some of which, Microsoft has already confirmed, will include a QWERTY keyboard, as well as a full touch screen experience. Sullivan also confirmed to Pocket-lint that the operating system would not be exclusive to any one operator in the UK or the US. "We want as many people as possible to be able to get it", Sullivan told Pocket-lint.

Earlier we heard that Sony Ericsson, HP, Toshiba and Qualcomm Inc. would also be delivering Windows Phone 7 handsets. We don’t know what happened there, but most likely it’s just that they won’t have the devices ready at launch.

The Samsung device developers currently have at their disposal will not be released in that form.