Windows 8.1 for desktop devices and tablets has been around for a while now, but the same thing can’t be said about its phone counterpart. Windows Phone 8.1 is the third generation which will replace Windows Phone 8. The public launch is expected to take place at Microsoft’s BUILD Conference in San Francisco, California in April, as it was released in preview form to developers on February 10, this year.
It took a while to see the Windows Phone 8.1 update, but a good thing is that all phones currently running Windows Phone 8.0 are expected to get upgraded to Windows Phone 8.1. So, as the official launch is getting closer, it’s only natural that we see more leaks with the upcoming features. So, to make it easier for you to know beforehand of the future changes, we’ve compiled the videos which describe some of the most important ones. The videos are courtesy, UnleashThePhones.com
As you can see for yourself in the above video, the new Camera App will be similar to Nokia’s Camera app, featuring quick shortcuts to settings on the left and shortcuts to the photo mode, video mode, or a built-in burst mode on the right. The app looks cleaner, more modern, and there’s still access to the Lenses feature.
Cortana voice assistant
Cortana is Microsoft’s answers to Apple’s Siri voice assistant and it will be really interesting to see what Redmond will have to offer to its users. As you can see in the above video, which unfortunately doesn’t feature “live action”, you can activate Cortana from the Start Screen or by pressing the Search button. It’s also interesting to observe that Microsoft has decided to stick with the brand name, as some rumors were saying it was just an internal codename.
One of the best onscreen keyboards, Swipe, will make its way into Windows Phone 8.1 and it will let users swipe fingers across letters for quickly word inputting. The new keyboard builds upon the Word-Flow one in Windows Phone 8 and comes with some really useful features such as emoticon prediction and the option to capitalize the first letter of a sentence.
We’ve previously discussed about one of the most important new features in Windows Phone 8.1 – the notifications center, but now we have some video of it. Just like on other platforms, the Action Center can be accessed with a simple swipe from the top of the display. It comes with 4 customizable toggles and notifications and can display multiple events and makes it much easier to manage notifications.
Windows Phone 8.1 comes with a “Wifi Sense” feature, which works like Data-Sense but is smarter. Users will be able to join WiFi Hotspots without manually accepting any terms & conditions or enter personal details. Windows Phone 8.1 will also allow to share your Wifi network information over Outlook, Skype, or Facebook contacts.
Internet Explorer 11
The launch of Windows Phone 8.1 will be accompanied by the release of Internet Explorer 11, as well. The stop/refresh button is now provided inside the address bar for quick access and the browsers now can save your passwords. Web pages now load much faster thanks to the new compression technology and the connectivity is more secure. Also, the new InPrivate Browsing mode lets you browse on your device privately so that surfing details don’t get into browser’s data cache. You are no longer restricted to only 6 tabs while browsing tabs can be synced between your Windows Phone 8.1 and your Windows 8 device.
Other important features
- Dual-sim support
- Tiles will be cross platform with Windows 8
- Apps can capture audio/video from themselves
- App and Game data stored on SD cards
- Backup of App + Game data to OneDrive
- Google calendar support
- Bing smart search
- Bing podcast app
- YouTube Player including HTML5 video support
- Encrypted and signed e-mail support
- Auto-triggered VPN
- Double Tap to Power Off
- Start screen backgrounds
- Audio/video transcoding, hardware accelerated
- In-call speech commands
- Battery Power Sense
- Bluetooth 4.0 LE