Microsoft unveiled Windows Phone 8 in June this year. Windows Phone 8 is essentially a new generation of the operating system that will be made available in later half of 2012. All previous version of Windows Phone operating systems had Windows CE based architecture at the core, but with Windows Phone 8, Microsoft will be moving on to Windows NT kernel and will have many of its components taken from Windows 8, thus allowing applications to be easily ported between the two platforms.
Windows Phone 7.5 has many features unavailable. Some of the features include those that you would take for granted when buying a smartphone. For example, the current Windows Phone operating system has a very basic camera app, and Nokia had to release a special app for the purpose and is called as Nokia Camera Extras. It brings in features such as action shots, panorama shots and smart group shots to the existing camera app. These features are available natively in Android and iOS counterparts.
Nokia also recently released Contact Share app, and again, it is a “fill what’s missing in Windows Phone” kind of app, and many more are still slated to release in the Marketplace soon. The Contact Share app lets the user send and receive contacts with other devices, including iOS, Android and BlackBerry, using the standard vCard format. Also, Windows Phone 7.5 in its current state has no way to click a screenshot, while all other competitors include the feature in device’s basic capabilities. These kinds of features should have been present natively, but seems like Microsoft is keen on loading up those features on Windows Phone 8.
Windows Phone 8 will have many standard features and will be a really capable operating system. Some of the features that are included in WP8 are screenshot capturing capability. Windows Phone 8 will be adding screenshot capture to its stock ability collection. Below is a video of Windows Phone 8 emulator which reveals that such a feature indeed exists.
As seen above, the emulator exposes the screenshot function. The function is activated by pressing the Windows key and the hardware camera button simultaneously, and a picture of whatever is displayed on the screen at that moment will be shot. As of now, the screen capture is stored in device’s Camera Roll, however, Microsoft may add a discrete screen grab folder in the final version in order to make things easy. The feature is great, but nothing innovative as such, considering that Android and iOS devices have had it for ages! Nevertheless, it should make lives of app reviewers and people who want to click silly autocorrect mistakes easier.
Microsoft is finally listening to its audience. You can expect Accent colours (you can change color of the tiles), Xbox Music (Zune has retired in WP8), Office 2013 for Windows Phone, text message back-up to SkyDrive, new photo options and voice command which should put Windows Phone 8 in league of Android and iOS. Coupled with dual and quad core processor support, NFC capability and improved lock screen functionality which can display updates from apps, the future of Windows based mobile devices looks promising.
It should be noted that current Windows Phone 7.5 devices won’t be receiving upgrade to Windows Phone 8, which is a little saddening, nevertheless, Microsoft aims to bridge the generation gap by upgrading current devices to Windows Phone 7.8, which will be bringing selected features of Windows Phone 8 to older devices. We don’t know how many and what kind of features will make it to older devices, but the point is users won’t feel their device is obsolete.
Windows Phone 8 is slated to launch in November, a month after the launch of Microsoft Surface tablets (both the RT and pro variants) and Windows 8 operating system. Where do you think Microsoft is heading towards with Windows Phone 8? Will a WP8 device be part of your shopping cart when launched in November? Let us know using the comment form below.