Windows Phone

Windows Phone is a proprietary mobile operating system developed by Microsoft for its smartphones. It was first released in 2010 and the first phones to use Windows Phone were designed by HTC, Dell, Samsung and LG. Windows Phone is the successor to the Windows mobile operating system and replaces traditional Microsoft Windows OS design with a new “Metro” design system user interface.

The Metro's interface of Windows Phone OS consists largely of a “Start screen” made up of “Live Tiles”. These tiles are the links to Windows applications and features that are dynamic and will be updated in real time. Both the Windows mobile OS and Windows Phone are incompatible with each other that is Microsoft doesn't enable smartphones with older Windows Mobile operating system to be upgraded to Windows Phone 7, and the vice versa.

Salient Features of Windows Phone

  • “Live tiles” for the home screen; These are customizable touch buttons can open which ever function the user has set, such as Contacts, photos, Internet Explorer or a certain application etc.
  • Multi-touch technology: Windows Phone possesses the user friendly and touch screen interface, which is referred as metro-styled design. Its default user interface has a dark theme that prolongs the battery life. Alternatively one can easily switch to the white background.
  • The Hub feature: It is the division of your mobile data into various groups or hubs. Windows Phone organizes both personal and online content from social media, contacts, photos etc. into individual groups. For example, The People Hub allows users to import contacts from Facebook, Twitter or other networks and view their photos from those social media services. The Games Hub provides access to free Xbox LIVE, and an entertainment Hub lets users listen to music and videos.
  • Email support: Offers support for different email platforms such as Gmail, Hotmail, Yahoo Mail and Microsoft Exchange.
  • Microsoft Marketplace: It contains an online repository where all users can download various applications for their Windows Phone devices. This new platform is compatible with many other Microsoft software products.
  • Web Browsers: Windows Phone 7 features a multi-tab Internet Explorer Mobile Web browser that uses a rendering engine. It is based on Internet Explorer 9 and Microsoft Office Mobile, which is a version of Microsoft Office that is custom-made for mobile devices.

Windows Phone versions

Windows Phone 7: Windows Phone 7 was released on November 8, 2010 and is the first version of Windows Phone after the Windows mobile operating system. It’s user-friendly and touch-screen UI made it the most widely used smartphones.

Windows Phone 7.5, Mango: The major update to Windows Phone 7 was referred as Tango or Windows Phone 7.5 that was released in May 2011. The update included a mobile version of Internet Explorer 9 that supports the same web standards and graphical capability as the desktop version, multi-tasking of third-party apps and Windows Live SkyDrive access etc.

Windows Phone 7.5, Tango: It is a minor update that was released in 2012. Its features include lowered the hardware requirements, bug fixes and many updated features.

Windows Phone 7.8: Windows Phone 7.8 was released in January 2013. It added some features from Windows Phone 8, such as an updated start screen, doubling of the color scheme option and others. Windows Phone 7.8 was designed to extend the life of older Windows Phone 7 devices, as they could not be upgraded to Windows Phone 8.

Windows Phone 8: On October 29, 2012, Microsoft released Windows Phone 8; it is a new generation of the operating system for mobiles. Windows Phone 8 introduced multi-core processor and multiple screen resolution support, USB Mass storage mode, Bluetooth file transfers, removable memory card support, Kid's Corner, etc. Its architecture is based on the Windows NT kernel that enables many components shared with Windows 8, to allow other applications to be easily ported between the two platforms. Windows Phone 8 devices are HTC 8X, Lumia 920, Lumia 820

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