Windows Phone 8.1 – App list sorting and actionable notifications revealed in alleged screenshots

More information is coming forward regarding the forthcoming Windows Phone 8.1. This time, alleged screenshots from build 8.10.12166.0 were posted in the Windows Phone Central forums by user qXerro. Although we have not verified the screenshots (they can be easily faked), we can confirm that the information revealed by them is accurate for the upcoming Windows Phone overhaul due early next year. In fact, the grammar error suggests they are re-created.

In three screen captures, posted below, we can see more detail about the Notification center and sortable items in the App list in addition to a new battery display option.

The Facebook notifications have not be verified, but app list sorting is accurate

In Windows 8.1, currently in preview edition, users should be familiar with the sorting option in the App list. Users can organize the list by name, frequency of use, category or date installed. Windows Phone Central has learned some time ago that this feature will also be present in Windows Phone 8.1, finally offering end users the ability to better control menu organization.  (We should also caution that we heard there were problems with it, so it may not make it to the final build.) By tapping the double-arrow in the upper right hand corner, users can select from those options listed above and this is reflected in these leaked screenshots.

The other new feature is actionable notifications. This will be a new enhancement to the current Toast notifications (i.e. pop up) that users are familiar with and it will be open to developers with the new 8.1 SDK. Once again, it will mirror Windows 8.1 and the Skype example, where users can answer the call with or without video or ignore, all from the Toast notification. The same will be in Windows Phone 8.1 where you can for example directly respond to a text message without having to launch the app. This can be seen above with the Facebook message.

We can also reiterate the news about 'ghost notifications' for the Notification Center, which Windows Phone Central first reported on a few days ago. These will not be Toast notifications but instead will go directly to the Notification Center so as to not constantly bother end-users. This option will be available to developers via the SDK and should give Windows Phone a superior notification system.

The third and final new tidbit reveals a “Show Battery percentage” option under the Battery settings. This will allow users to see the exact percentage of battery in the Task bar next to the battery icon.

Other information revealed but not verified is that the OS will be announced in January with the SDK due in February, most likely at the Mobile World Congress in Barcelona. The poster of the screenshots, qXerro, has noted that this current build has poor Wi-Fi and that the settings app crashes randomly, reminding us that Microsoft still has some work to do.

Windows Phone Central cannot maintain if the actual screenshots are real though (they could be re-creations) but we stand by the information revealed here. Of course, features can be added and removed during the process so more changes may be forthcoming.

Update 11:45 AM: We should also clarify that many of these leaked screenshots (or clever PhotosShops) are in fact based on older OS iterations. That means not too much should be placed on final UI layouts or functionality. 

Source: Windows Phone Central Forums; Thanks, Muessig, for the tip

Daniel Rubino

Daniel Rubino is the Editor-in-chief of Windows Central. He is also the head reviewer, podcast co-host, and analyst. He has been covering Microsoft since 2007, when this site was called WMExperts (and later Windows Phone Central). His interests include Windows, laptops, next-gen computing, and watches. He has been reviewing laptops since 2015 and is particularly fond of 2-in-1 convertibles, ARM processors, new form factors, and thin-and-light PCs. Before all this tech stuff, he worked on a Ph.D. in linguistics, watched people sleep (for medical purposes!), and ran the projectors at movie theaters because it was fun.