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Summary:

As Microsoft gets closer to releasing Windows Phone 8.1 it’s sharing information with app developers. The newest software shows more unification across the company’s desktop and mobile platforms and improved ways to navigate on a Windows Phone.

windows phone screens

Microsoft isn’t expected to release the next major Windows Phone update for at least a few months. Before it does, however, it has to provide developers with early access to the software so they can update their apps accordingly. The company recently did just that, and by using the Windows Phone 8.1 emulator, you can see what’s different in the software.

WinBeta.org took a look at the Windows Phone 8.1 SDK and filmed a video of some of the more visual changes. Granted, between now and the time Microsoft officially releases Windows Phone 8.1, things can and likely will change. Still, this offers a general idea of what to expect.

Among some of the changes is a new way to close applications that’s reminiscent of Windows 8.1: You can pull apps down off the screen to close them. Users will also have the option of displaying a navigation bar at the bottom of the display. That could indicate future Windows Phone hardware without physical buttons for the Windows key, search and back options. A new Battery Power Sense feature should help with detailed power management information. And there’s support for Universal Apps that can exist in both the Windows and Windows Phone stores, further signaling a unification between Microsoft’s desktop and mobile platforms.

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  1. Michael Reilly Monday, February 17, 2014

    Does it have provision for Wacom digitizer and Windows pen to text recognition. If so, I’ll get ready to sell my Galaxy Note 3.
    Microsoft tried to copy Apple, and inexplicably threw away its supremacy in Wacom pen digitizer integration and Windows text recognition.

  2. Hi Kevin,

    Enjoy your articles. Wanted to get your input. Many people that use Windows phones have complained that unlike in Android the default dialer is only allowed to access certain data including call history. One of the reasons that people look to an alternative dialer is for the intelligent dialing – being able to locate and call a contact by alphanumerically spelling their name on the dialer – instead of having to sift through all your contacts.

    HTC does this well and I have installed a dialer on my android that does this. I have no idea if Apple supports this but, let me tell you, it’s such a time saver.

    How can I – we – reach out to MS and suggest that they include this feature on the default dialer.

    Can you call someone their? I know you’re well connected. Call your buddy, what’s his name… Joe Belifore and ask him if he can sort that out. Please!

    Thanks,

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