The first Windows Phone 8 device has been officially announced in the Samsung ATIV S. What's so great about the ATIV S? Well, aside from running the next-generation mobile OS from Microsoft, it's got a 4.8-inch HD Super AMOLED display, 1.5 GHz dual-core Qualcomm processor, 1GB RAM, and a 2,300mAh battery. Not enough? How about an 8-megapixel rear camera and 1.9-megapixel front camera, and a body comprised of brushed aluminum and Gorilla Glass 2? You'll be able to pick up the ATIV S in October.
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If you though that Apple had the exclusive on announcing a major smartphone in September, think again. Word is coming out that Nokia is also looking to announce its next-generation Windows Phone 8 smartphones in September at Nokia World. Bloomberg reports that someone "with knowledge of the matter" has said that the unveiling of the new line of Windows 8 Nokia Lumia smartphones will happen on September 5, one week before Apple is scheduled to show off the new iPhone 5. Pretty smart, if you ask us.
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Mary Jo Foley over at ZDnet is reporting that she's heard that Windows Phone 8 devices will be launching in November. We've previously heard that it would be "this fall," but that's pretty vague. Foley is trustworthy though. According to her sources, the finished product will be sent to Windows Phone manufacturers in September, with the devices hitting retail the following month. Remember, none of the current Windows Phone 7 devices will be upgradeable to Windows Phone 8, so in order to get in on the action, you'll have to buy a new device.
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Nokia has just cut the price of the best Windows Phone in the US market by 50%. Yep--the Nokia Lumia 900 is now just $49 with two-year contract on AT&T. Sure, you won't be able to upgrade to Windows Phone 8, but Windows Phone 7.8 will bring most of the visual updates like the redesigned home screen to the Lumia 900. Seriously, for the money, you'll wanna give this one a look if you're in the market for a new smartphone. Check out our Nokia Lumia 900 review.
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Today Nokia revealed the pink Lumia 900 Windows Phone device. Set to launch on July 15th, it'll cost $99 with two-year contract like the white, black, and cyan hues of the device. This one is an AT&T exclusive for the time being, so if you're interested, mosey on over to your nearest AT&T store this Sunday to grab one. Remember, these won't be upgradable to Windows Phone 8, but Windows Phone 7.8 will provide many of the visual features that 8 will bring anyway.
Microsoft has released a preview showing how the next version of Windows Phone 7, 7.8, will visually look. As you might recall, when the company showed off Windows Phone 8, it also announced that there would be no upgrade path for any Windows Phone 7 devices. However, they also let us know that those users would be able to upgrade to Windows Phone 7.8 in order to get the most obvious and visual feature--the new Windows Phone home screen. Once upgraded to 7.8, users will be able to resize all of their tiles as easily as Windows Phone 8 users can, and in the video above Microsoft's Ben Rudolph walks us through the experience.
What you see above are purported leaked images of Windows Phone 8, Apollo. Microsoft is set to unveil Windows Phone 8 to the world at next week's Windows Phone Summit on June 20th. What the images above show is built-in Skype integration (Microsoft purchased Skype months ago,) a data usage function that shows how much of your monthly data cap you have left along with the number of days left in your billing cycle, and the camera app with the new lenses feature. We can't say for sure that these are authentic, but they certainly appear that way. We'll know for sure next week!
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We knew Microsoft was planing to do away with the Zune brand, and today the company revealed its new music service during its E3 Media Breifing. Xbox Music will soon be released for the Xbox 360, Windows Phone, and Windows 8. During the presentation, we were able to see that the service takes on the Metro UI, staying consistent with the Xbox 360, Windows Phone, and Windows branding. Expect over 30 million tracks to be available at launch, with the Smart DJ feature that was popular with Zune users to stick around. Microsoft also mentioned that Xbox Music will give you access to your music collection from "any screen," but we don't know if that means we should expect iOS and Android apps like they'll be released for Xbox SmartGlass, or if it just means that you'll be able to access your music from a web browser, similar to Zune. Xbox Music is set to launch later this year.
E3 is right around the corner (a.k.a. next week) and word has slipped that Microsoft is planning to introduce a product called Smart Glass at the event. Xbox Smart Glass will be a companion application that you use with the console that will allow you to send video to the Xbox 360 from a smartphone or tablet, similar to what you can do with an iOS device and Apple TV using AirPlay. The cool part? Aside from naturally running on Windows 8 tablets and Windows Phone devices, Smart Glass will also run on iOS and Android in a multiplatform play for supremacy. About time, Microsoft.
Read More | Examiner
AT&T is preparing to add a third LTE Windows Phone to its lineup with the addition of the Samsung Focus 2. This one is for the budget-minded among you, as the device will sell for just $49.99 with two-year contract--half the price of the Nokia Lumia 900 (see our Lumia 900 review.) As far as features go, the Focus 2 sports a 4-inch Super AMOLED display, five megapixel camera on back that can record 720p video, and a VGA-quality camera up front. Want one? You can scoop it up from AT&T when it goes on sale on May 20th.
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