The .NET Compact Framework team has spent the last year planning and developing the next version of the .NET Compact Framework 3.5, which will align with the .NET Framework 3.5 shipping in next version of Visual Studio code named “Orcas”.  The team has focused its efforts in 4 areas including, addressing core problems of creating distributed mobile applications by enabling mobile devices to interoperate with Windows Communication Foundation services, Implementing device specific features from LINQ, continuing to implement highly requested features and refining NETCF’s ability to diagnose and solve reliability and supportability issues. 
 
The first release of NETCF 3.5 went public a few weeks ago in the Orcas January CTP.  This release of NETCF does not include the complete list of features but is a step toward the final feature set.  New builds of NETCF will be included in each new public drop of Orcas with the majority of features being included by Orcas Beta1.  Below is a list of features included in the January CTP.  If you’re interested in these new features start by downloading the Orcas January CTP using either the VPC image at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=1FF0B35D-0C4A-40B4-915A-5331E11C39E6&displaylang=en or try installing it to your test PC at http://www.microsoft.com/downloads/details.aspx?FamilyId=69055927-458B-4129-9047-FCC4FACAE96C&displaylang=en
 
 
New Features Included in the Orcas January CTP:
• System.IO.Compression support, including support for HTTP compression.
• Support for a subset of Linq’s Standard Query Operators.
• SoundPlayer support using WaveOut allowing for multiple sounds to play at once.
• New API in Microsoft.WindowsCE.Forms for easily distinguishing Smartphone and Pocket PC.
• Allow Nested FuncEval's.
• Enhanced logging for interop functionality with native code.
• Stack Trace Enhancements.
• GAC Improvements.
• Allow for StrongName keys greater than 1024 long.
• To improved logging of finalizer activities to enhance product supportability.
• Allow log files to be read at runtime.