Microsoft denies reports that no current-generation phones will be upgradeable to the forthcoming Windows Mobile 7 which is set to be released later this year.

According to Natasha Kwan, general manager for Microsoft’s Mobile Communications Business in the Asia-Pacific region, current phones running Windows Mobile 6.5 OS will receive incremental upgrades, but they can’t be upgraded to Windows Phone 7 Series.

This is because they don’t meet the hardware criteria that Microsoft has mandated for phones running the new OS, she told APC Mag.

However, Microsoft said in a statement could not confirm this comment.

For Windows Phone 7 Series we are enforcing a strict set of hardware requirements to ensure a consistently great experience for end-users and developers.

While we cannot confirm that WM6.X phones that satisfy those requirements will be upgradeable, every Windows Phone 7 Series device will be upgradeable with improvements and features we deliver with subsequent Windows Phone 7 Series releases, the company said in a statement to PC World.

That seems to be their default response these days, said Matt Rosoff, an analyst with Directions on Microsoft.

They don't want to talk about backwards compatibility, and I suspect the reason is because the news is not going to please their partners and current customers.

The software giant introduced Windows Phone 7 Series at Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain.