Print 6 comment(s) - last by Reclaimer77.. on Feb 24 at 9:23 AM

Windows Phone 8.1 is focused on improving Microsoft's viability at the low-end of the market

The Mobile World Congress in Barcelona, Spain has officially kicked off and there are plenty of big announcements that will come along in the next few days (including the unveiling of the Samsung Galaxy S5). But today, Microsoft is shedding a little bit of light on its smartphone operating system: Windows Phone.
Microsoft made a ground up redesign of its mobile operating system with Windows Phone 7, and refined those efforts with Windows Phone 8. Now, Windows Phone 8.1 will soon be upon us to further cements the platform as a solid #3 in the smartphone marketplace.
“We are making it easier, faster and more affordable for partners to develop a Windows Phone,” said Nick Parker, corporate vice president of the OEM Division at Microsoft.

With Windows 8.1, Microsoft is adding support for Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 and 400 processors, on-screen virtual hardware buttons, and the ability to install apps to microSD card. All of these moves will allow OEMs to produce cheaper hardware in an effort to boost Windows Phone market share.
Windows Phone 8.1 will also include dual-SIM support, which is directly aimed at emerging markets.
Besides new features being added to Windows 8.1 itself, Microsoft also announced new hardware partners including Foxconn, Gionee, Lava (Xolo), Lenovo, LG, Longcheer, JSR, Karbonn and ZTE.
“We are pleased to add these new partners to our expanding Windows Phone ecosystem. They will be key contributors to continued growth across price points and geographies for Windows Phone,” said Parker.
Windows Phone 8.1 is scheduled to hit the market this spring, and should support all handsets that are currently running Windows Phone 8.

Sources: Microsoft [1], [2]

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By name99 on 2/23/14, Rating: -1
RE: Translation
By atechfan on 2/23/2014 1:42:04 PM , Rating: 3
I always thought that the number of partners was one of the strengths of the Android phone market. Sure, it meant some cheap garbage phones, but it also meant products like the Galaxy Note innovating what a phone can be. I am happy to see more people making Windows phones.

RE: Translation
By retrospooty on 2/23/2014 2:11:59 PM , Rating: 1
Exactly... More freedom means more products and more options and better stuff for cheaper. Competition is always a good thing. Even if you dont want to buy that product or no, its existence helps spur competition.

RE: Translation
By Reclaimer77 on 2/24/2014 9:23:44 AM , Rating: 2
Exactly. Nokia isn't Apple, Windows Phone can't thrive as a single-vendor brand. That just isn't working out for them. Windows Phone fanbois can't see the forest for the trees.

Less quality? The only phone they ever sold in any numbers is the cheap ass $80 520 series.

RE: Translation
By Reclaimer77 on 2/23/2014 6:59:57 PM , Rating: 1
Yeah these changes might mean people actually buy Windows phones. What a terrible idea...

You sound just like an smug elitist Apple zealot. Just saying.

RE: Translation
By w8gaming on 2/23/2014 8:21:05 PM , Rating: 1
It means people has the choice to buy what they want and what they feel mostly reasonably priced for their needs. Unlike Apple product which everyone is forced to pay a huge premium to have the priviledge of owning such a brand. As in all things in life, if you want to charge premium pricing in all your products, do expect a small market share. Microsoft wants its brand to be everywhere, and it must do this in order to achieve it.

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