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Windows Phone 8: What should you expect?

Microsoft recently announced their latest mobile OS, Windows Phone 8, which features a whole lot of big improvements. It’s not yet known as to when this major update will be released but it shouldn’t matter to existing Windows Phone (Mango) owners as WP8 requires a new set of hardware to use.
However, for those looking forward to the next-generation of Windows Phone, here are a few details on what WP8 has to offer.
  • Windows Core. Windows Phone 8 will be transitioning to a new NT kernel known as Windows Core and I think this is the main reason why WP7/7.5 users simply can’t upgrade to it. This shift will allow WP8 users and developers to adopt the same kernel, file system, drivers as that of Windows 8. Full C and C++ support anyone?
  • Multi-core support. If you’re wondering why even the Nokia Lumia 900 is running on single-core, here’s your answer, Mango just doesn’t support multi-core processors. With WP8 though, it can support up to 64-cores.
  • More screen resolutions. Now you can clearly distinguish high-end phones from mid-range from its display with new screen resolutions - 720p (1280×720), WXGA (1280×768) and WVGA (800×480). App developers don’t need to worry about developing for different resolution because scaling is done automatically.
  • Full SD support. You’ve probably been wondering as well why Windows phones don’t openly support SD cards, well according to Microsoft SD cards are troublesome with the current OS. WP8 will be able to fully support SD cards to work as they’re intended to be, an extension of your phone’s storage.
  • NFC support including NFC payments
  • Nokia Maps with 3rd party app support. Guess we’ll be seeing Nokia maps even on non-Nokia handsets.
  • Revamped start screen. Tile sizes now include small, medium, and large sizes and you will be abel to use the whole width of the screen for your tiles. This is just one of the changes done on the UI.
  • Skype and VoIP integration. Microsoft says this is going to be big, better than what the others are offering.
  • Internet Explorer 10 mobile. This mobile browser takes some code from the desktop version like phishing filter and Microsoft’s SmartScreen URL reputation system
  • Range of business and enterprise features. You’ll get things like device encryption, improved security, remote management and even your Company’s own hub and apps.
These are just a sneak preview of what Microsoft is up to with Windows Phone 8 which is still under heavy development. The first wave of devices for Windows Phone 8 will come from Nokia, Huawei, Samsung, and HTC, all built on next-generation chips from Qualcomm.

As mentioned earlier, Mango users won’t be able to support this new OS but Microsoft is planning to put some of the features (like new Start screen) to a WP7.8 update for current Windows phone users.
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