Over the past few weeks, there has been a lot of talk about the launch of Windows Phone 7.8 on legacy devices. If a report by Pocket-Lint is anything to go by, these legacy handsets could be updated to Windows Phone 7.8 before Christmas.
In the past, Microsoft had stated that Windows Phone 7.8 would be released only after Windows Phone 8 handsets were launched. With the launch event over, it was expected that devices running on Windows Phone 7.5 would be updated.
The report states, “However, information coming out of a Nokia Asia-Pacific developer event in Singapore suggests that attendees were told the Windows Phone 7.8 RTMd (release to manufacturing) this week, meaning the updated software is ready to roll, with a timescale of "days to weeks" expected. The information is attributed to "head of Nokia Asia Pacific Developer" so it's not clear exactly who passed on the information and we remain slightly sceptical.”
Windows Phone 7.8 coming soon to legacy devices
In what may come as some interesting news for those who purchased legacy handsets such as the Lumia 900 or Lumia 800, the report goes on to state, “But there's more Windows Phone 7.8 news, too. This time it comes from Nokia Germany, where a leaked slide suggests that there's another increment beyond WP7.8. It's simply given as 7.x, suggesting that a name hasn't been decided, although one would surmise that 7.9 is the only real numeric option available.”
According to a recent report, a slide leaked online which shows some features of Windows Phone 7.8. Apart from the new Start screen featured in Windows Phone 8, which has already been announced, there are improvements to the browser as well. The upcoming operating system will not feature the Internet Explorer 10; it is believed that Microsoft will add some enhancements to IE9 instead.
The report states that other enhancements to the upcoming OS for legacy handsets such as the Lumia 800 are more colour themes; support for editing MP3 files on the handset itself, which can be used to make ringtones; and access to the Windows Phone 8 Lock screen that enables users to change their wallpapers with new images through apps.
The slide reveals that Nokia too is adding some of its own improvements such as the Contacts Transfer app as well as features to share content via Bluetooth.
Until now, No timeline has been declared yet for the availability of this operating system for existing devices that are eligible to receive the upgrade. However, it is speculated that Microsoft will issue this update only after the hype of Windows Phone 8 settles down.
None of the existing Windows Phone 7 devices, including the Nokia 900, are eligible for a Windows Phone 8 update. In order to avoid a riot outside its stores, Microsoft promptly announced Windows Phone 7.8, a sort of ‘value pack’, if you will, for existing devices. All handsets running WP 7.5 or Mango will be upgradeable to WP 7.8, and one of the new features that the update brings with it is the new customisable homescreen from WP 8. Users of the Lumia 800 and similar devices will be able to resize the homescreen widgets as well as choose between different colour schemes for better personalisation. This applies to all Nokia Lumia handsets.