Report: Windows Phone Update 3 enables powered-off charging for the HTC 8X, 8XT

Most pundits and tech enthusiasts tend to agree that Windows Phone 8 is a really good operating system. What it is missing are lots of little things that can annoy some users and keep it from being perfect. The GDR revisions, like the recent Update 3, go a long way in filling in those gaps to deliver an improved user experience.

One of the grievances that people have about Windows Phone is the inability to charge the device and to have it powered-off at the same time. Windows Phone is unique here, since most phones allow you to power down the device and then to plug it in to charge. It’s a great method to max out your recharging power (since you’re not operating the radio), and it’s also a way to get some quiet time, while being useful.

Reports are coming in, and Windows Phone Central has been able to confirm, that the HTC 8X, which recently began receiving Update 3 globally and on AT&T, has finally resolved this issue.

The website Windows Phone Italy first reported on the new finding and our George Ponder was able to verify it on his AT&T branded HTC 8X (with Update 3 installed).

Assuming users have installed Windows Phone 8 Update 3 (build 10501), powering the device down and then plugging it in will result in the following behavior:

  • HTC 8X vibrates as if it was powering up, but the screen stays black
  • The HTC splash screen appears
  • Then a battery icon
  • The phone will not boot into the OS

While a seemingly trivial thing, this feature will sure make a lot of users happy. The change, isolated so far to the HTC 8X, is most likely a configuration in that device’s firmware and not the OS itself. Instead, Microsoft most likely enabled the feature in the OS, but left it up to manufacturers to enable the feature, should they choose so.

Hopefully Nokia and Samsung will allow the option in their forthcoming firmware, as we’re guessing many of your will want this new feature.

Update: Also confirmed as a feature for the Sprint HTC 8XT, which received Update 3 last week.

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.