The successor to Windows Phone 8 may reach consumers as soon as this holiday season, according to a recent Microsoft job posting. Until then, at least two much needed updates named "GDR2" and "GDR3" are expected to hit smartphones running on WP8.
The job posting for a "Software Development Engineer in Test" states (emphasis mine):
This is a great time to join as we’re completing our current release are getting ready for our next release targeting the holiday of this year and we’re chartered with keeping the momentum for Windows Phone by bringing new killer devices and delightful user experiences.
Windows Phone 8 has only been available for about six months, so talk of WP9 (or whatever Microsoft chooses to name it) may be disheartening for anyone who remembers the absence of an upgrade path from WP7x to WP8. This time around though, Microsoft recently affirmed that WP8 will indeed be upgradeable, indicating the next major Windows Phone release should work on many -- if not all -- existing WP8 handsets. Details regarding upgradability are not known, however.
The Redmond-based software maker has been very quiet about the "next release" of Windows Phone, although Windows Blue rumors continue to surface. Precisely what changes Blue will bring to Microsoft's products and services remain unknown, although some vague details came to light thanks (once again) to Microsoft's illuminating job postings.
Windows Blue -- which is not an OS but purportedly a collection of enhancements and tweaks -- should land before the next major release of Windows Phone is rumored to arrive. Blue is purportedly poised to hit consumer preview status in just a "few months".
Windows Phone launches have historically been accompanied by new hardware, namely new Nokia Lumia handsets, which have been used to showcase the OS. Perhaps, we'll see new hardware arrive alongside Windows Phone's next major release, as well.
The Nokia Lumia 920 features a Snapdragon S4 1.5GHz dual-core processor, a 4.5" IPS LCD with 768 x 1280 resolution (332 PPI). It packs an 8.7MP rear camera with a 2MP front-facing camera. The Lumia 920 runs Windows Phone 8 and is compatible with charging products based on the Qi wireless power standard. Other specs include, NFC, 1GB of RAM, and 32GB of memory with 7GB of free SkyDrive storage.
The Nokia Lumia 900 is 11.4mm thickness and weight 159g, in the front you can find the 4.3-inch ClearBlack AMOLED display and in the back the 8 megapixel camera and its LED flash. Since there are no seams or doors there is no way to access the 1830mAh battery or increase the phone's 16GB internal storage with a microSD card.
The Microsoft Surface RT offers the flexibility of a Windows 8-based tablet as well as an ultrabook-like computer. The Surface RT is powered by a quad-core Nvidia Tegra processor, 2GB of memory, a 1,366x768 wide-screen display, and Windows RT. Other features include a USB 2.0 port, HDMI-out, and a vapor-deposited magnesium chassis.
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