After the recent leaks regarding common universal apps for Windows and Windows Phone attributed to information accompanying the Windows Phone 8.1 SDK files, the latest iteration of the Microsoft's mobile operating system is now said to arrive sometime between July and August 2014.
The tentative launch window was reported by a China publication, which claims the updates will be released between July and August of this year. While this release is said to of the final version for users, the developer's version is said to arrive a little before, in the month of April. The report adds that only those developers who have an App Studio account will be able to access the Developer Preview of Windows Phone 8.1 in April.
Phonearena states that during the time of WP 8.1 OS roll-out, a number of new handsets will be also revealed featuring the OS. No specific brand or dates have been announced as of yet.
The confidential, invite-only Windows Phone 8.1 SDK Developer Preview was reportedly released earlier in February, and since, a few purported leaks have made their way to the web.
Some of the new features purportedly gleaned from the leaked Windows Phone 8.1 Developer Preview SDK have also been detailed recently, and include:
- Sharing secure WiFi Networks with contacts if they have WiFi Sense. They don't get to see the shared password though.
- Social notifications will now show up in action centre by swiping from the top of the screen.
- Operators can now control data sense limits remotely.
- Operators can also install certain applications once a SIM card is detected.
- Along with normal updates, there are now "important" updates.
- Options to always download emails and pictures within them.
- Encrypted and signed email support.
- Change default SMS app. You can also change which SMS app will show notifications.
- Enterprise enrolled phones can have their passwords changed and remotely locked.
- "Type as I swipe through letters". This means we will be seeing Swypelike functionality.
- Geofence monitoring support. Geofence is a boundary around a place of interest to you.
- Location services can monitor geofences to tell your apps when you're entering and leaving them.
- Office Lens support. Will scan in documents and screens.
- The phone will have to update to the latest version before you can restore it to factory settings.
- Option to update store apps automatically.
- Option to update store apps when only on WiFi.
- App Suggestions by location.
- Manual App Update checks.
- Video Calling Support? I don't know if we will be given choices of which VOIP provider to use. Maybe Skype video calling will be builtin?
- Password protected Office document support.
- Trusted app list for NFC that will remove the need for asking whether you want to open a particular app.
- Incall speech commands. You'll be able to say "Call XXXXXX".
- DoubleTap to unlock your phone (Feature from Lumia devices on Amber Update and newer).
- Lock Notification.
- Quiet Hours.
- Double Tap to Power Off.
- Notification if charger isn't of adequate power.
- Screenshot button combination is now Power + Volume Up (Since the newer phones will have the start button on screen).
- Check disk for SD Cards essentially.
- Apps on SD Cards are only allowed from ONE originating phone. If it detects that apps from another phone are installed on the SD Card, then it will ask to delete those first.
- Voice Narrator for Accessibility.
- The Search button will be the new way to open Speech instead of the Start button.
- New Email sync options with accordance to usage patterns (i.e. If you get a lot of mail on particular days and if you don't check mail every day).
- Change the size and amount of tiles on your start screen.
- Wallet supports tickets and membership cards.
- App Syncing.
- Backups now include application data.
- Screen Reader functionality.
- Screen Recording functionality.
- Inner Circle of contacts. Up to 40 contacts can be in the inner circle.
- You can favourite photos by tapping a heart icon.
- Virtual SmartCard support
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