Recently, Microsoft posted an optional Windows Phone SDK Update for Windows Phone 7.8 on its developer's blog. This update offers two new Windows Phone 7.8 emulator images to the existing SDK installation. With the help of these two emulator images the developers will be able to fully test how their Windows Phone 7.5 app's Live Tiles will look and behave when they are running on Windows Phone 7.8 devices.
With the help of this update, Windows Phone users will be able resize their Live Tiles much like the Windows Phone 8 users. Users will have the option to choose from three different sizes for tiles on the home screen. The update will also bring new themes and accent colours along with a new lock screen option to automatically display the Bing picture of the day.
More recent reports have indicated that Microsoft will be launching the Windows Phone 7.8 update pretty soon. The British telecom carrier O2 had indicated that the update will be rolled out by the end of January while Microsoft's Colombian Facebook page had posted that this update will arrive on January 31, 2013. From the current scheme of things it appears that it's just a matter of days when Windows Phone 7 and Windows Phone 7.5 users will get an update notification.
Furthermore, Microsoft has also posted in its blog that, "new phones with Windows Phone 7.8 are beginning to ship." Not sure of what Microsoft is trying to indicate through this. To us it can mean two things. One, handset makers might be planning to ship their existing smartphones pre-loaded with Windows Phone 7.8 in the near future. Second, it could mean that the company is planning to launch new smartphones on the lines of Nokia Lumia 510 and Nokia Lumia 610 with Windows Phone 7.8. In either case, we will have to wait a little longer to know how things unfold in the future.
Microsoft has already announced the most recent version of its mobile operating system - Windows Phone 8 - in October 2012. Currently, Nokia Lumia 920, Lumia 820, HTC 8X and HTC 8S are already shipping in India with Windows Phone 8 and it is expected for companies like Huawei and Samsung to soon bring their Windows Phone 8 smartphones in India.