Rumor: Microsoft set to roll out Windows Phone 8 update 'Apollo+' in Q1 2013 [Update]

Microsoft is set to fire up its updating engine for Windows Phone in Q1 next year, according to a tweet published by renowned Twitter account @Football4PDA. The account was the named source for the leaked images of the HTC Accord (HTC 8X), as well as a number of other headlines that have been published along the way to Windows Phone 8. 

Rum: 7

The tweet in question claims Microsoft will release an update for its recently launched mobile platform at the beginning of next year, and will be titled Apollo+. While there's little to back up said claims, it's likely to turn out to be true. We're not entirely certain what could be included in such an update to Windows Phone 8, but it would make for a welcomed gift post-holiday season for those who have recently invested in a new Windows Phone. 

Notifications Centre could well be on the list of included features and functionality, as well as separate volume controls, not to mention the number of bug fixes and improvements that will surely be applied to further smooth out the user experience. Be sure to head on over to our forums to view what the community wants to see added to Windows Phone.

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Microsoft pushed out the NoDo update for Windows Phone 7 in Q1 2011 - though many had issues with carriers delaying the rollout. We wouldn't be surprised if the company had a windows Phone 8 update planned for the new year. What's more is that all updates pushed out by Microsoft should be sent out OTA (Over-The-Air) to consumers- no need to plug the device into a computer.

Update: According to The Verge, Microsoft has a number of improvements on the horizon for Windows Phone. The Apollo+ update could include VPN support to enable connectivity with systems, which has been missing since the Windows Mobile days. A WiFi connection patch is also in the pipeline to allow connections to remain active (something which Joe Belfiore mentioned recently), as well as some audio enhancements.

What would you like to see in the first update rolled out?

Source: @Football4PDA (Twitter)

Rich Edmonds
Senior Editor, PC Build

Rich Edmonds is Senior Editor of PC hardware at Windows Central, covering everything related to PC components and NAS. He's been involved in technology for more than a decade and knows a thing or two about the magic inside a PC chassis. You can follow him over on Twitter at @RichEdmonds.

  • I'd like to see a system wide screen rotation lock option.
  • This! Orientation lock is still missing for whatever reason!
  • This! And I hope they fix the calendar!
  • There's nothing wrong with the calendar
  • I completely agree with the calendar improvement. Or allow 3rd party developers to create robust calendar apps without limitations. Right now my wife's Iphone has a 3rd party calendar app that smokes anything I can find on my WP8. Trust me, I have several calendar apps (eg: VSysCalendar, Week View, etc) and none of them are fully functional. They are nice add-ons but they are not robust. I'm still all in with WP but after 2+ years, my patience is wearing thin.
  • Your patience is wearing thin over the built in calendar?
  • My patience has already worn thin, had a Samsung Omnia 7 since it first arrived, great phone. Now got iPhone 5, best decision I could make! (not dissing MS as I love WP as an OS) I may come back to WP, but with the lack of third party apps (still), its a blessing I can get all the apps I require on iOS. When they're made for WP and big developers take WP seriously, im coming back, but in the mean time, technology moves to fast to still be waiting. 
  • "technology moves to fast to still be waiting."
    You should mention that to Apple. Every phone release lately has just been a spec bump in their lineup. No true innovation, except for possibly Siri (which is debatable). Sure, Microsoft may not have the apps, but I think they have the tech that Apple is missing, especially with hardware devs like Nokia pushing the envelope. 
  • I don't disagree with you regarding the phone, but for me personally, it's about the apps I can use rather than the phone. I love the Nokia 920 and think its specs kick Apples arse, I just wish it had the ecosystem/developer apps now that would complement a great phone and OS.
  • not to criticize, but how many apps do you actually use on a normal basis?!
  • Mind throwing out a few examples?
  • Yes! All day events now seem to show on the live tile the day before but not on the day of. Kinda frustrating, if you don't open the calendar app every day.
  • Yep, I noticed that.
  • I agree, though what I'm looking for is a feature enhancement more than a fix. With Office 365 being a powerful - and I expect popular - way to manage your information, it would really be nice if the appointment categories (and their colors), as well as shared calendars, could be seen on the phone, so you have a seemless experience between Outlook, OWA, and your phone. To me, that's the most significant update that's missing.
  • I still don't understand why they haven't added it back after it was included in the pre-release 7003 build. Seems like one of the easiest things to re-add, especially since the homescreen doesn't have a landscape mode anyway.
  • The only phone that has screen rotation lock is dell venue pro. I can't appreciate how useful it is when viewing web pages. Oh and it has portrait keyboard too =] I plan to hold on to it for as long as venue pro like phones come along.
  • Orientation Lock is a must!!
    + they should fix the opening of multiple windows of Messaging app in multitask menu (even when you're txting the same person!)
    + and add a close button to open apps in multitask menu, or Swipe up to close..
  • Seriosuly..we need that goddamn orientaion lock. This is embarassing.
  • +100000000000
  • The orientation lock is the last thing on my list of must haves. I have no other complaints with the OS.
  • Me too! I hate the screen keep rotating! ;)
  • YES please orientation lock!  Really annoying when using the phone in bed!
  • Yes, make it so!
  • 1920x1080p resolution support, notification center (although I don't care deeply for one at this time), swipe-to-close gesture when using multitasking view to quickly close out certain applications, WiFi calling, DirectX support (which was touted during the initial press conference for Windows Phone 8 earlier in 2012), and an assortment of fixes for freeze bugs and improved battery life.  I've also noticed WP8 devices such as the Lumia 920 bootup considerably slower than WP7 devices.  I did a restart test against a Samsung Galaxy S3 and my Lumia 920 lost by about 10 seconds!  However, my old Titan 2 beat the S3 by nearly 10 seconds.  What has happened to WP8!?
  • Sheez was nodo only this year?! I thought it was Last yr? :P
  • Hope its true, would make sense. Alot of WP8 devices being sold this Holiday season, have to address issues quickly...
  • NoDO was the update sent out Q1 2011, not this year right?
  • That's what I thought?!
  • Correct.
  • Post has been corrected.
  • Rotation lock, please! Also, an option to add name and email address or other contact info on the lock screen.
  • There are apps that do this by creating a background screen with your text.
  • I would lke to see separate volume controls and a notification center. Also, are current WP8 users wiling to wait that long for bug fixes? Seems it would be best if they rolled out bug fixes sooner (depending on how widespread and severe they are).
  • If they were to add a notification center, they would remove Live Tiles. Then it would just be a list of applications.
  • I see both working together without any issues. Live tiles are great for a quick glance, but notification center can provide greater detail, and can show updates for all the apps in one place. It's also beneficial for apps (offering push notification) that are not pinned to the Start screen. So, I think both can co-exist without causing redundancy.
  • ^ this
  • Yes, there is absolutely no reason they can't both exist on the same device.
  • Who says??? We need both!
  • can we get past this already? Live tiles are basically widgets with rules. Most of them aren't that different than the counter badges iOS has used for years, and even iOS eventually saw the need for a centralised notification center.
    Just this weekend I had multiple instances of "why did my phone just beep?", and none of my tiles were showing anything.
  • Its kind of minboggling that people dont get this by now.
  • I don't understand why people can't understand this either...
  • I think the user needs both of them.
    Live Tile for the current imformation presentation, while notification is for re-cap any old information (most likely toast notifications).
  • Yeah, like a "timeline" of toast notifications.
  • Swipe left gets the apps, swipe to the right gets notifications. Like on the N9, keeps it simple with 3 main screens.
    [Notifications]   <-  [Home]   ->  [Apps list]
  • +1
  • Yes!!; And louder volume!
  • +1
  • I like this idea. +1+1+1+1+1
  • Very good! +1
  • I'd prefer a swipe down from the top of the screen. Then it can be available as an overlay from anywhere, not just as part of your home screen. Like you get a notification and you can drag it down into a feature-rich notification center. Maybe app-specific notification extension too. Eg pull down a text notification to see a little text history and a basic reply box. When no notification is visibile, swipe down in similar fasion to how you access things on a win 8 tablet. Then you get a list of notifications and can drill in to the simple extensible actions for IM, etc. I'd much rather that than overloading the home screen with functionality.
  • More cut/paste options.
  • Eg, copy and paste phone numbers into dialing pad? Yes please! :)
  • Yo, dawg. I don't know if you know this, but you can totally do that in Windows Phone 8. I do it every day! :D
  • Just so you're aware. In WP8 you can copy/paste phone numbers into the dialing pad. So, that wish has been granted. ;)
  • Heck... WP8 actually does one better.  If you tap on any phone number in a website, etc... it actually copies and pastes it dierectly into the dialer for you and dials the number!
    E-mail seems to work slightly different.  If you tap a number in an e-mail, it opens the number up as a contact.  You can then click the Call this Number option to place the call.
    I actually used this the other day.  I was looking up the number for a local store and told my wife to grab a pen so she could write the number down. On a whim I decided to try and tap the phone number from the website and sure enough it started dialing!!!
    Pretty slick!
  • pretty sure you were able to do the same thing in WP7.5, it may not have dialed the number right away but it allowed you to.
  • Cloud backup of application data and start screen layout.
  • +1
  • Backup of application data is a must. Startscreen layout would be nice, but we would need the sync software to install the apps as well.
  • WP8 does reinstall previously installed apps when restoring.
  • Screen rotation lock would be welcome, but a notification center is not necessary, that's why wp has live tiles...
  • +2 what's the point of live tiles if i have one spot for everything? Plus we have notifications on the new lock screen. People just trying to make this like android ios its not it wp
  • Live tiles are useful, but are limited in their purpose. A notification center can show greater detail and can also show all the notifications in one place. Moreover, users may opt to not pin certain apps to the start screen, and a notification center would (should) be able to gather updates for such apps as well. So, I would argue both - live tiles and notification center would perfectly complement each other. Just my thought on the matter - as you can see, I'm pro notification center! :)
  • +1. Live Tiles and a notification center is the Holy Grail.
  • I'm thinking half-press volume button to bring down menu, and then swipe down from the top of the screen, pushing the menu away and revealing old notifications. If you don't want them anymore, just swipe them away! I know this sounds a lot like iOS, but the iOS-way is just really annoying especially when you're playing games on a smaller screen and you swipe twice from the edge and the game pauses >
  • +1 and Blutooth, wifi, and NFC could be put on the notification pivot (it should be the left pivot) so you can get to everything easily.
    Right now to get to wifi, you have eitehr pin a 3rd party app or the system screen to the start page. It's a hassle. Android handles it much better with the nice top drag down. I'm a windows fan, but if we are honest the notification on android is better.
    A left pivot would do the trick just as nicely as the top down for android.
  • my thoughts exactly.  the entire homescreen is a notification center tailored only to the notifications that you care about.  I really don't get this obsession with a Notificaiton center for wp8.
  • So how about this scenario, you here a notification sound on your phone but dont look at it right that second/minute and when you go to see what it was it's gone and nowhere to figure out which app it came from. I'm not talking text messages, phone calls, emails, but more of lets say a sports score from the ESPN ScoreCenter app that sends a notification to my phone when one of my teams scores a TD (real time). If you do not here it or see it with in the window of time it is gone and I mean gone!
  • It seems like this scenario has to be explained ad infinitum to all the "no need for notification center" people. I wish they would listen for once.
  • I think some listen but a lot of them can't "here" what's being said. LOL
  • I would think it safer to assume they don't care because its not really an issue for them. Personally for me its not an issue yes sometimes it would be nice to see a missed toast but generally if I actually care then that app is pinned and I see an indicator or the text display of the tile has updated. That is the point of the live tile system. The problem is not really ms or the is its devs that are doing straight ports fom other platforms and not using this platforms unique features. Case in point weather app. I would like to know about the weather fairly regularly so its pinned and at the top it normally displays the current temp and flips with the local radar image if I get a sever alert and mis the toast I see a nice badge indicating sever weather along with the current temp whose background reflects the condition outside and whose back tile shows the radar pretty mch everything a notification center would show and pretty much the same info contained in the toast for the most part this is all the info I desire but f I want more then tap the tile and when opened its UI is up to date with relevant info and the ability to dive into more detail. see a properly written app for the platform removes the need for notifications. If your app does not show what you want talk to its developer most of us listen to users or at least should its how we make a living
  • correct me if I'm wrong but if it meant that much to you wouldn't you pin the ESPN tile to the Start Screen and it would show there's a little 1 in the corner to tell you there's a notification so you open the app?? I think that's the argument against having a notification center.
  • While it's certainly a workaround, there are a couple of issues with that argument -
    1) It's telling people what to do with their Start screen. This defeats the purpose of personalization. Users should be able to leave apps off the Start screen but still leverage their push notification capablities. This becomes especially useful for less-often used apps (in my case - Flight Aware and Parcel Tracking). I (and I'm sure many others) don't want to constantly pin-unpin apps just to leverage push notification.
    2) Live tiles do not offer details regarding the updates. Most apps show either the latest update, or, a number indicating an update. This is where a notification center becomes very effective. It shows all the updates (and the details regarding each update) that happened across all apps (pinned or unpinned) in one location.
    This is why I feel both - live tiles and a notification center, are essential.
  • Apps with push notification, if not pinned to start screen, you won't know if you had any. That's the issue. They show up and disappear. So there is a need for some kind of notification center, unless MS can come up with something else.
  • Exactly.
  • Thank you. I don't understand why other people don't get this! Currently the CNN app (for WP7) does toast notifications for breaking news but even with the live tile the app doesn't tell you that it just tried to notify you. If you don't check in time, that breaking news toast notification is gone forever.
  • You're right - regarding the CNN breaking news toast notification - apparently it's the only way to show the "breaking news" marquee in the app. If you miss the toast notification, you can't just open the app to see the breaking news. It truly is gone forever! Wish CNN would fix this in a future update.
  • I said this above, but a timeline style list of toast notifications would be cool. Just a place that collects and keeps the toasts. Make it work like the texts list. Where new and untapped toasts are highlighted and tapped ones are muted, select to delete individual toasts or clear the lot.
  • All this speculation and no official word. Not buying into it until it happens. The whole trail up to WP8 devices and WP8 has been a whole phantom menace.
  • Only until Microsoft Strikes Back and gives us WP8 users New Hope.
  • This might just be my favorite comment that I've ever read on WPCentral. Thank you for that.
  • I'm confused about seperate volume controls. My Lumia 920 volume controls seem to fnction differently than my Titan and Dell venue pro before it.
    It used to be that my phone volume was the same for music and alert volume. Now however it's different. When I connect to my car via bluetooth for music, the volume is different than my call or alert volume. Aren't those seperate volume controls? Quite frankly I prefered the simpler WP7 way.
  • Call volume has always been separate (along wi