Microsoft Announces 8 Updates for Windows Phone 8

Microsoft unveiled the details for their new Windows Phone 8 Apollo on Wednesday during their Windows Phone Summit, capping off a busy week on the heels of the Microsoft Surface announcement. Appropriately, they announced 8 specific updates that will be a part of Windows Phone 8.

  1. Hardware Updates. The primary updates to the hardware include supporting multi-core processor chips, adding two new screen resolutions, and adding support for microSD cards.
  2. Internet Explorer 10. The same browser that will be running on Windows 8 tablets and PCs will be on Windows Phone 8 as well, offering faster speeds and increased security.
  3. Shared Native Code. Windows 8 and Windows Phone will share the same native code, which should help developers design apps and games for both platforms. Microsoft hopes this will allow the quality of the Windows Phone Marketplace to improve dramatically.
  4. NFC Sharing. A relatively new technology, NFC allows phones that are near each other to share contacts, photos, documents, and other similar files.
  5. Windows Phone Wallet. Windows Phone 8 will have a Wallet that is similar to iOS Passbook and Google Wallet, allowing storage of credit cards, coupons, and loyalty cards. Unlike Google, however, MS Wallet will allow for greater transferability by keeping the data on a microSD card instead of the device itself.
  6. Nokia Maps. Nokia mapping will be replacing Bing Maps.
  7. Business. A designated software management system, Microsoft Office support, and a complete security platform are all geared toward aiding businesses that use Windows Phone 8.
  8. New Start Screen. The start screen is the most visible and flashy change to the phone from a user perspective. With that in mind, take a look at what’s in store below from Microsoft’s official start screen video.

What’s your reaction to Windows Phone 8? Will it challenge the iPhone or Android? Or is it just a nice alternative for Microsoft fans who dislike Apple and Google?

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