Microsoft expected to announce Windows Phone revamp on Wednesday

Posted:
in General Discussion edited January 2014
Riding a wave of momentum generated by the Surface tablet unveiling on Monday, Microsoft will be outlining plans for Windows Phone 8 on Wednesday as part of the company's push to take on Apple and Google in the mobile market.

The Redmond, Wash.-based tech giant is slated to discuss the next-generation Windows Phone 8 at a two-day long developer summit in San Francisco, with anticipated topics ranging from multi-core mobile CPU support to tighter device integration across the Windows environment.

Unlike Monday's Surface tablet event which was teased late last week, the upcoming developers conference was announced a month ago and Microsoft has been relatively tight-lipped about what to expect, reports CNET. It is clear that the company will be focusing on its mobile OS as the invitations sent to press outlets were from Microsoft's Windows Phone unit and depicts a mobile device sporting a Golden Gate Bridge background image.

Rumors surrounding the event point to the announcement of Windows Phone 8, the next-gen mobile operating system that is widely speculated to support multi-core processors. This would be a step up from the current single-core units like the Qualcomm Snapdragon SoCs used in handsets like Nokia's Lumia series. Because developers play a key role in writing the multi-threading code necessary to deploy software in multi-core devices, the topic will likely be broached during the summit.

Developers Summit
Windows Phone Developer Summit invitation. | Source: CNET


While the basic UI of Windows Phone 8 will be much the same as the current Windows Phone 7, Ina Fried of All Things D points out that the core operating system kernels will be totally different. She notes that Windows Phone 7 is based on the legacy Windows CE platform Microsoft stripped down to battle Palm when smartphones were in their infancy, while the as-yet-unannounced Windows Phone 8 will likely be built on the Windows NT core that has been at the heart of every desktop iteration of the OS since Windows XP. Further extending the NT kernel's reach is Windows 8, the OS that will power next-generation tablets like Microsoft's own Surface, but desktops, laptops and the new Ultrabook specification as well.

Fried makes an astute point in saying that developers won't have much of a problem porting their software to a variety of devices running Windows 8, though this raises the question as to whether the OS can be pared down enough to run smoothly on respective hardware. Software written for Windows Phone 7 should have no problem running on Windows Phone 8 as Microsoft didn't allow developers to write code directly to the kernel and instead forced them to use Silverlight and XNA.

Windows 8
Windows 8 screenshot. | Source: Microsoft


With Windows 8 Microsoft will have an operating system that will underpin a set of devices that runs the hardware gamut but it remains to be seen whether it will be a true one-OS ecosystem that is both stable and non-fragmented. This is the type of tight system integration that Apple is moving toward with iOS 6 and OS X Mountain Lion albeit in a more indirect way with discrete mobile and desktop operating systems.

Also rumored to make an appearance at the event tomorrow is near field communication (NFC) hardware support similar to Android's Google Wallet service. Apple has expressed interest in NFC with hirings and patents though it is unknown if the iPhone maker plans to include the technology into future version of its popular handset.

As the exact feature set of the next-generation Windows Phone awaits official announcement, some analysts predict that sales of the Microsoft-powered wireless devices will outpace those of the iPhone by 2016. The most current figures showed a 0.4 percent drop for smartphones running Windows Phone 7 during the month of April, though an expected fall 2012 launch for the Windows 8 ecosystem could drum up demand.
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Comments

  • Reply 1 of 35
    solipsismxsolipsismx Posts: 19,566member
    1) This is odd. I would have done one event to kickoff the developer's summit that covered all the upcoming HW and SW.

    2) So all those developers and vendors that supported WinPh7, based on WinCE, will be getting the shaft as MS moves to WinPh8, based on WinNT, or are they compensating them in some way to retain their support?
  • Reply 2 of 35
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member
    Can't they just do this all at once?
  • Reply 3 of 35
    2oh12oh1 Posts: 503member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by AppleInsider View Post



    Riding a wave of momentum generated by the Surface tablet unveiling on Monday...


     


    You're kidding, right?  A wave of momentum?  ...only if you mean wave as in waving buh-bye to any possible momentum.

  • Reply 4 of 35


    Riding a wave of momentum?!?! More like a small splash... 

  • Reply 5 of 35
    lkrupplkrupp Posts: 10,557member


    What gets my goat is all the pundits who think Microsoft will just waltz in and take it all away from Apple overnight. If it were that easy wouldn't they have done it by now? 

  • Reply 6 of 35
    tallest skiltallest skil Posts: 43,388member
    2oh1 wrote: »
    You're kidding, right?  A wave of momentum?  ...only if you mean wave as in waving buh-bye to any possible momentum.

    I feel as though it's more like a hangover. Last night that thread was buzzing with all sorts of stuff. Today? Petered out in the morning light, even.

    It's as though everyone took another look at "what they did last night" and said, "Never again, never again…"

    And before you ask, yes, the cheap whore was Ballmer.
  • Reply 7 of 35

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by SolipsismX View Post



    2) So all those developers and vendors that supported WinPh7, based on WinCE, will be getting the shaft as MS moves to WinPh8, based on WinNT, or are they compensating them in some way to retain their support?


     


    Microsoft has already said publicly that all WP7 apps will run on WP8.


     


    I don't see developers being too dismayed at a development change, since the rumor is that Windows Phone 8 development will be based on Windows 8 development, resulting in a much higher ability to reuse code across platforms.

     

  • Reply 8 of 35
    dasanman69dasanman69 Posts: 13,002member
    That looks very much like a Galaxy Nexus. Are they going with Samsung instead of Nokia?
  • Reply 9 of 35
    hodarhodar Posts: 359member


    I'm anxiously waiting to hear if those 3% of Windows Phone owners are going to be abandoned, or if they will be able ot upgrade to Win8.  That, IMHO, will be a major indicator - if you bought a Windows Phone and you are abandoned, that is going to buy a whole lot of ill-will.  This is something that is not unknown to MSFT - so it will be interesting to see what happens.

  • Reply 10 of 35
    alfiejralfiejr Posts: 1,524member


    oh yeah! what a "Wave of Momentum"! a rushed promise-ware Surface tablet announcement with almost no important details (but it's got a kickstand!), followed by yet more hype, building on WinPhone 7.5's huge flop and Nokia's resulting death spiral!! 


     


    wow, with more "momentum" like this MS could totally lose its butt!! just call me "some analyst" too. or even just "some dude." all the same in web "journalism."


     


    i like their strategy. i like it a lot.

  • Reply 11 of 35
    anantksundaramanantksundaram Posts: 20,407member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by Hodar View Post


    I'm anxiously waiting to hear if those 3% of Windows Phone owners are going to be abandoned, or if they will be able ot upgrade to Win8.  That, IMHO, will be a major indicator - if you bought a Windows Phone and you are abandoned, that is going to buy a whole lot of ill-will.  This is something that is not unknown to MSFT - so it will be interesting to see what happens.



    LOL. Reminds me of their 'Playforsure' (or whatever-the-heck it was called) fiasco when the Zune (remember that?) was introduced.

  • Reply 12 of 35
    diddydiddy Posts: 282member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by anantksundaram View Post


    LOL. Reminds me of their 'Playforsure' (or whatever-the-heck it was called) fiasco when the Zune (remember that?) was introduced.



    Playsforsure predates the zune by a year or so.  It was designed as a unified DRM for other players (a DRM platform).  I don’t think that the Zune even supported Playsforsure.

  • Reply 13 of 35


    Will the Windows phones come with a little rubber keyboard and a kickstand? Will there be a "pro" version too? 

  • Reply 14 of 35

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by lkrupp View Post


    What gets my goat is all the pundits who think Microsoft will just waltz in and take it all away from Apple overnight. If it were that easy wouldn't they have done it by now? 



     


    Reasonable point.  It won't be easy at all.  


     


    And I don't think that M$ will ever "kill" either Apple or its tablet.  But I never bet against Microsoft - or Apple - so I think that they will both do well. 

  • Reply 15 of 35
    markbyrnmarkbyrn Posts: 662member
    Riding a wave of momentum following the announcement of their Unicorn PC-Slablet with no ship date or price? There might be a wave to ride if they were actually selling these devices and people were lining up to get them. I guess the wave here is a the ripple created by dropping a pebble in the pond.
  • Reply 16 of 35
    slurpyslurpy Posts: 5,385member


    I have yet to see a real, live person using a Windows phone in the wild. I'm sure they exist, just haven't ran into one yet. 

  • Reply 17 of 35
    boriscletoboriscleto Posts: 159member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by diddy View Post


    Playsforsure predates the zune by a year or so.  It was designed as a unified DRM for other players (a DRM platform).  I don’t think that the Zune even supported Playsforsure.



     


    Playsforsure was Micro$oft's attempt to kill the iPod with FUD in 2004. When that didn't work they rebadged the Toshiba Gigabeat as the Zune in 2006.

  • Reply 18 of 35
    quadra 610quadra 610 Posts: 6,757member

    Quote:

    Originally Posted by JerrySwitched26 View Post


     


    Reasonable point.  It won't be easy at all.  


     


    And I don't think that M$ will ever "kill" either Apple or its tablet.  But I never bet against Microsoft - or Apple - so I think that they will both do well. 



     


    I've been betting against Microsoft for nearly a decade now. 


     


    They make it easy. The secret: Ballmer. 

  • Reply 19 of 35


    " This is the type of tight system integration that Apple is moving toward with iOS 6 and OS X Mountain Lion albeit in a more indirect way with discrete mobile and desktop operating systems."


     


    iOS & OSX aren't really that discreet.  The underlying core technologies & architecture of both operating systems are, for the most part, unified.  It's the UI layer that differentiates them.  I definitely see Apple, in the not too distant future, allowing developers develop Universal Apps for iPhone, iPad, & the Mac.  This is pretty much what MS is doing with Windows 8.

  • Reply 20 of 35
    charlitunacharlituna Posts: 7,217member
    Can't they just do this all at once?

    Sure they could have. I haven't been paying attention but what it known in advance thT Google was doing an announcement today. Because that coukd be why MS didn't do it all together. They wanted their strategy and tablets 'out' first. Same as Google rushing their Maps announcement out to be before Apple
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