Windows Phone 8.1 Blue

For being a weekend it’s been somewhat busy. Yesterday we had leaked screenshots showing off a developer build of Windows Phone 8.x – notification center in tow.

The notification center was obviously the biggest piece of info from those screenshots, but there was plenty more info to be gleamed from the phone. Quick recap after the break and a story of what happened to the phone bought off of eBay that contained this build of the Windows Phone. And don’t forget, our sources say those screenshots are an “early” build of the next-version OS.

The images were posted in a Reddit thread from user Chinaman28 who had bought a Lumia 920 off eBay. Apparently the device was never meant for sale because it contained a version of Windows Phone that wasn’t ready for the public yet. We won’t know whether it was someone selling a stolen/lost device or an employee at Microsoft accidently shipping the wrong Lumia 920 in his collection.

Either way, Microsoft reached out to the Reddit user to reclaim their lost property. They reimbursed him his purchase and still gave him a new Lumia 920. A fairly happy ending for Chinaman28.

Leaked screenshots from Windows Phone 8.1

Further down in the Reddit thread you learn some interesting things about this Lumia 920 running a prototype version of Windows Phone. Mostly the fact that the words “MSFT” were laser etched into the back of the device. When booting up the phone he also saw “not for resale” in red. I guess you could say, wait for it, that was a red flag.

One little thing a lot of us missed in those screenshots from yesterday is something that will make any science fiction fans giddy with joy. You’ll see it above. But there’s an app called zCortanApp. I’m probably ready way too much into this, but could you imagine if our future voice assistant on Windows Phone sounded just like Cortana from Halo? That would be a coup de grâce to Apple’s Siri, in Halo matchmaking we call that a headshot. Other items noticed on the Microsoft owned Lumia 920:

New Features and changes Windows Phone 8.1 Blue (experimental or in development)

  • Notification center
  • Ability to close apps from the multitasking window
  • Sort apps by most used
  • New calendar interface with a week view
  • Data sense available

Windows Phone Central has been able to confirm that this these images are from Windows Phone 8.1 aka 'Blue' and not GDR3. These images were from an earlier build of that OS and the Notification center as seen has since been removed from later iterations, having changed into a more People Hub-like experience before being removed altogether. That's not to say Notifications aren't coming but rather Microsoft is experimenting with different versions of it for 8.1.

In other words while the images are authentic, they should be taken as a snapshot of the development process and not the final form of those features. Windows Phone 8.1 Blue is not expected until the end of the year, although ship dates as we understand have not yet been finalized.

Source: Reddit