The latest generation of Microsoft's mobile phone operating system will not have a copy-and-paste function. Nor will it be able to multitask.

The controversial details about the "intentional" exclusion of copy and paste started to unravel during a question-and-answer session at Microsoft's MIX10 developer conference - a Microsoft-run three-day web developer conference for professionals held from March 15 to 17 in Las Vegas.

That's right, Microsoft intentionally omitted clipboard operations like copy and paste on their Windows Phone 7 Series.

A Microsoft PR rep explained to technology blog Engadget that "most users, including Office users, don't really need clipboard functionality."

After Apple users spent years complaining about the lack of a copy-and-paste function on their smartphone, it is strange that Microsoft would leave out such a staple function, especially considering that copy and paste features have been a longstanding feature on past versions of Windows Mobile.

"It's actually an intentional design decision," Windows Phone executive Todd Brix told CNet. "We try to anticipate what the user wants so copy and paste isn't necessary."

Instead of providing copy and paste features the company decided to implement what they call "smart linking." Smart linking enables users to double tap on a phone number to call or add it to their address book or to open a map when double clicking on an address. But this may not be enough for users wanting to re-arrange text in the mobile version of Office.

Both RIM and Apple include intelligent linking and copy-and-paste features on their handsets.

On March 15 Microsoft shocked the tech world when it announced Windows Phone Series 7 would not be able to multitask, despite the inclusion of multitasking on previous versions of their mobile OS.

Windows Phone Series 7, like the iPhone, will be able to run native applications (such as the Zune music player) and make phone calls with other applications open at the same time, but multitasking with third-party application will not be possible for the time being.

More information about Windows Phone 7 Series - which are due to hit the stores in Q4 2010 - and Microsoft's MIX 10 can be found here: