Rumors

According to a local Windows Phone blogger, those who reside in Australia won't have long to wait for Windows Phone 8.1. In fact, should everything be accurate, Vodafone AU is set to roll out the update later this month with the Nokia Lumia 630 available from this week.

It's worth noting that we expect the Windows Phone 8.1 roll out to start soon enough.

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One of the smartest aspects about Cortana for Windows Phone 8.1 – besides the whole AI thing – is the ability for Microsoft to change dynamically the personal assistant without an OS update. That’s because those ‘pages’ that deliver her information are HTML5 generated web data, meaning it can be altered without much effort.

Reports are coming in from our forums today that Cortana had some changes, including new animations, Tile icons and more. However, those changes have since rolled back already, which could indicate some early testing in preparation for a wider rollout.

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Microsoft's move to not announce the Surface Mini at yesterday's event in New York City took us by surprise, so we were left wondering what happened. Aside from being pushed back by the hands of Nadella and Elop, it turns out that the smaller Surface tablet was already in production, with some 15,000-20,000 units having already been assembled.

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Come this Tuesday, Microsoft is holding a small but major press event in New York City dealing with the Surface line of devices. Rumors of a Surface 'Mini' have been circulating, suggesting that a device around 8-inches with a new pen will be one of the major talking points. In recent days, reports of a 'Surface Pro 3' started popping up, but instead of a Surface Pro 2 refresh, this appears to be a new model, possibly with a larger screen size.

Windows Phone Central has learned some of the details of this new series, including pricing, processors and storage size. In addition, there will be new Type covers, possibly to fit the larger device.

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Windows Phones have been powered by a variety of processors since the Samsung Omnia 7 was released back in 2010, but ZTE could be the first manufacturer to pump out a device with the Qualcomm Snapdragon 801 chip. According to an unfamiliar source, ITHome, a new phone from the manufacturer will be named the 'Nubia W5' and is set to be a super high-end Windows Phone.

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Well, well, well. After dropping Windows Phone a few years ago it looks like LG is set to return. The South Korean electronics manufacturer is prepping a Windows Phone 8.1 handset if a recent press render is to be believed. Serial leakster @evleaks has shared an image of an alleged LG handset with Windows Phone 8.1.

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If you've never really been happy at the fact you need a Xbox Live Gold subscription in order to access Hulu and Netflix on your Xbox there's a good chance that requirement could be gone soon. It's something that has been on the table for a while now but according to Arstechnica, multiple sources have now been briefed on the matter ahead of June's E3 expo.

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Although the Microsoft acquisition of the Nokia handset division has legally wrapped, some news about what we can expect from the new Microsoft department has come forward. This morning, the Verge is reporting that a new device – codenamed ‘Superman’ – is being prepped for a release later this year and that it will feature a 5 MP front-facing camera.

‘Superman’ is described as a mid-range phone by the Verge with a 4.7” display. It will coincide with two required OS updates for Windows Phone 8.1, one over the summer and one later in the year. No other information about the device was revealed.

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It's Saturday. Go out with friends, call your mother, do some house chores. No need to get wrapped up on supposed "Windows Phone 8.1.1" update nonsense

If it sounds too good to be true (and there's no proof given), it probably is (and trust me, this is bogus). Having said that, let's have a real discussion: What do you want to see in Update 1 for 8.1? Sound off below!

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We're hearing additional confirmation of rumors that Microsoft is speeding up their release cycle for Windows. Mary Jo Foley's sources say we may see Windows 8.1 update 2 as soon as August, which could include a new start menu, but probably not floating modern apps in desktop mode, which may take until Spring 2015 to arrive in Windows 9. We had heard Windows Phone update cycles would be sped up too, so it would be no surprise if Windows had things kicked up a notch too.

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So far, the Preview for Developers program with Windows Phone 8.1 is going very well for Microsoft and those interested in getting an early look at the next OS. The preview, however, is not completely optimized for individual devices, and they still need new firmware to be complete. Once “official” updates rollout with OEM firmware, we expect things to be even better for consumers.

Still, Microsoft is in a ‘pay attention to the customer’ mode, reacting very quickly to user feedback. That’s why we’re excited to hear, at least via Microsoft’s Community forums, that an update to the Windows Phone 8.1 Preview will be forthcoming.

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This week is certainly expected to be a rather busy one for Windows Phone and what better way to kick things off than with some leaked codenames. Courtesy of @evleaks, the popular leakster Twitter profile, new Nokia codenames have been published for everyone to begin speculating with. In addition, we figured we would toss in a few Microsoft codenames to make it all even more interesting!

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New information revealed to Windows Phone Central confirms that Microsoft is planning at least two OS updates for Windows Phone 8.1 in 2014. Internally known as ‘general distribution releases – or GDRs –  GDR1 and GDR2 are already on the roadmap for this year, with a possible third one in 2015 before the next OS revision, codenamed ‘Threshold’.

It should be of little surprise that Microsoft plans on repeating the same update schedule for Windows Phone 8 for 8.1, as it has proven to be a relatively successful method for adding new features to the OS and keeping Windows Phone in the news. A twelve-month cycle for major OS revisions also seems to be the new norm both for Phone and Windows.

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We know that Samsung is working on launching the ATIV SE on Verizon, but what about the rest of the world? SamMobile has reported that the manufacturer is actively developing another Windows Phone – the ATIV Core. It's believed to be a mid-range smartphone and will be a launching product for Windows Phone 8.1, Microsoft's next major update for the platform.

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We're looking forward to a handful of new devices this month. Nokia should have two - the Lumia 630 and the Lumia 930. Samsung is the other OEM expecting to put out a new Windows Phone handset. That's the ATIV SE and is one we've been watching for sometime. However, the specs of the phone have remained somewhat elusive. That changes today.

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It’s Monday morning, just days before Microsoft’s Build conference kicks off in San Francisco. Windows Phone 8.1 is one of a few announcements expected by Redmond, with Nokia following up later in the day with some their own press event.

While Windows Phone 8.1 is going to be the big news, a lot of you are only concerned with one thing: When do you get it?

The distribution of 8.1 will include a few steps, including getting it into manufacturers’ hands, pushing updates through carriers and most tantalizing, the Developer Preview Program. That program, accessed through an app on the Windows Phone Store and open to anybody with a free App Studio account, will allow everyone to install Windows Phone 8.1 on any Windows Phone 8 device weeks before “official” carrier updates.

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The next firmware update from Nokia, which will be bundled with the upcoming Windows Phone 8.1 release, has had its internal codename – Lumia Cherry Blossom Pink – leaked thanks to screenshots published on a Chinese website. Just like Bittersweet Shimmer, which later became known as Lumia Black once released to the public, we expect Nokia to drop 'Lumia Cherry Blossom Pink' for a catchier phrase. Other screenshots were included to tease some of the features in the upcoming operating system update.

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