So, the latest announcements from Microsoft: the 'Surface' tablet and the 'Windows Phone 8' seem to be pointing to one single thing: Microsoft wants to catch up and if possible supersede both ‘Google’ and ‘Apple’. Both the announcements are equally important in a way that Microsoft is betting its future on. While it might seem that Microsoft wants to take advantage of the constantly growing tablet market, if we observe carefully, we can figure out the real thing that the company is concentrating on is its ‘Windows OS’.
The reason is quite simple and pretty obvious from its latest announcement: “Windows Phone 8”. The reason that this is very important is that ‘Windows Phone 8’ will be running on the same kernel that ‘Windows 8’ runs on which will allow it to support a lot of features detailed below:
a. Support for Multiple Platforms
Developers shall be able to easily port apps from ‘Windows Phone 8’ to ‘Windows 8’ due to the ‘Windows NT’ kernel. Not only that, the kernel will also support native C and C++ Code which will make it easy for them to port apps from Android and iOS as well
b. Support for Multi-Core Architecture
‘Windows NT’ kernel will also allow ‘Windows Phone 8’ to not only support dual-core and quad-core architectures but to also offer support up to 64 cores theoretically
c. Support for HD Screens
Most people want their displays to be very crisp as they have to read text out of small screens. While the ‘800 * 480’ resolution on the ‘Lumia 800’ was good it was nowhere near the industry’s best. Thankfully, this problem has also been addressed in the underlying architecture as the ‘Windows NT’ kernel will allow ‘Windows Phone 8’ to support HD resolutions like WVGA, WXGA and 720p
d. Support for Full SD Cards
The earlier architecture that ‘Windows Phone 7’ was based on, didn’t allow full SD card support which meant that users had to use only some manufacturer recommended SD cards which severely limited users’ ability to store more data in the form of music or photos or videos etc. in their devices by using other SD cards. Microsoft has also rectified that by using ‘Windows NT’ kernel which allows Full SD card support.
e. Support for NFC
‘Windows NT’ kernel also allows ‘Near Field Communication’ to be enabled which means that Microsoft can design its own ‘Wallet’ service which will not only allow users to store sensitive information related to ‘Credit Cards’, ‘Debit Cards’ and ‘Coupons’ but also will allow them to transact instantly by swiping their smartphones. In fact, Microsoft will be designing the service in such a way that information can be seamlessly sent across its own Operating Systems: ‘Windows Phone 8’ and ‘Windows 8’
Apart from the above features, Microsoft is also planning to put to good use, the companies that it has acquired and has partnered with. ‘Windows Phone 8’ will have ‘Deep Skype (VoIP) Integration’ and ‘Better Navigation features’ through the use of ‘Nokia Maps’. The User Interface will also be revamped to allow the users to see more information through smaller ‘Live Tiles’.
There was a big uproar from user community who stated that Microsoft hasn’t done the right thing by not allowing the existing ‘Windows Phone 7.5’ users to get upgraded to ‘Windows Phone 8’. Well. How will it? Most of the sweeping changes that Microsoft is proposing are tied to hardware. What Microsoft should ensure is that it allows all the ‘Windows Phone 7.5’ users access to all the features in ‘Windows Phone 8’ which are not tied to hardware. It has already said that existing ‘Windows Phone 7.5’ users will get another update: i.e. ‘Windows Phone 7.8’ which will visually look similar to ‘Windows Phone 8’.
So, while ‘Windows Phone 8’ is definitely a step in the right direction for ‘Microsoft’, people will not stop wishing if only the company started with ‘Windows Phone 8’ as its entry OS for smartphones. Well, better late than NEVER.