Microsoft has unveiled much anticipated smartphone operating system Windows Phone 8 at an event in San Francisco. After the launch of Windows 8 last week Microsoft unveiled Windows Phone 8, previous mobile OS Windows Phone 7 didn’t impress a lot of people and Microsoft retooled the OS with new features. Windows Phone 8 shares code with Windows 8 to give a consistent experience over desktop and mobile.
Live Tiles are part of the Windows Phone 8 experience since WP7, these live tiles allows users to bring information to the start screen. Users can customize the start screen by pinning their favorite apps to the start screen, if the app supports live tiles it will show live updates. With Windows Phone 8 (WP8) these live tiles will work on your lock screen as well, for example Facebook app can display real-time updated on lock screen. The display now supports 1280 x 768 screen resolution, earlier the maximum resolution is at 480 x 800.
With WP8 you will have access to he Pandora, one of the most popular music streaming app. Pandora will be available from early 2013 on Windows Phone 8, as a launch offer you will get one year of ad free music.
Kid’s Corner or Guest accounts:
WP8 brings a quite useful feature to Windows phones, guest accounts for kids so they can enjoy content like Games with out messing with the phone content. These guest accounts will have their own start screens and content that is picked by the phone owners.
No need to worry about data overages with WP8 as it comes with Data Sense feature that optimizes the data usage and notifies you when you are about to hit your data limits. It compresses web images and differs data tasks to free Wi-Fi networks when available for conserving data. Data sense will also shows how much data is used by certain apps, that way you can see what app is using too much data. Data Sense will roll out this holiday season, and it will first come to Verizon in the US, it will roll out gradually to other carriers over the next year.
Skype as expected will be deeply integrated into the Windows Phone OS, it behaves like a regular app and doesn’t cause battery drain. It will run always in the background.
SkyDrive is integrated into Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8 and with this integration you can access all your documents, photos and music from any of the device.
Wallet can store your credit, debit, loyalty and membership information on your phone, similar to Passbook on iPhone. Mobile payments need NFC support on the device.
Rooms is a new feature that allows WP8 users to create groups for people so that you can share or chat with them, for example you can create a group for your family or friends at work place to share things with that group only. You can chat, share calendars, share photos in a conversation, only people invited to that group will see those updates.
Windows App store is behind the iOS or Android app stores but Microsoft is making efforts to catch up to the rivals. Currently Windows app store has 120,000 apps and new apps are included every day. Once Windows Phone 8 released these app numbers will go up for sure.
Samsung, Nokia and HTC are among the partners who have lined up Windows Phones, these partners are launching several devices that run with Windows Phone 8 in the coming weeks. Some of these devices will be available from November 13 onwards.
Nokia will launch Lumia 920, 820, 810 and 822 in the coming weeks, AT&T will carry Lumia 920 and 820, and T-Mobile will carry 810 and Verizon will carry 822. Samsung will launch Samsung ATIV Odyssey in December in US as an exclusive to Verizon. HTC’s Windows Phone8X will be released in November.