Big changes are coming to the Windows Phone platform with Windows Phone 8.1, the next major update to the Windows Phone Operating System. All WP8 devices will be able to update to Windows Phone 8.1 which will begin rolling out over the next few weeks, or months (timing varies depending on model).
These are exciting changes that will enhance your Windows Phone experience, check out some select major improvements and new functions below.
The most hyped addition to the Windows Phone platform, Cortana is your personal assistant, residing in your phone. Like in the Halo games, Cortana will aid you in your daily life just as she has aided Master Chief. She’ll take notes for you, make calls, set reminders, tell you the news and weather, and more!
Like in Windows Phone 8, Cortana will work with apps that leverage speech capabilities such as SG Radio (“tune in to 92.4”), SG Polyclinics (“how’s the queue at Bedok Polyclinic”), SingAdventure (“show bus stops near me”), and more. Check out a full list of apps “Made in Singapore” that work with Cortana’s speech platform.
Cortana is currently only available in the United States, but will eventually roll out to other countries (you can change your phone’s region to United States to get her).
If Live Tiles weren’t enough notification for you, Windows Phone 8.1 now includes an Action Centre, a one-stop to all notifications and quick access to settings. Simply swipe down to see any notification from your apps, as well as quick toggle settings that you can set.
The Start Screen
Users can now customize their Start Screen even more! One can now add extra rows to the Start Screen and even set a background image! As if Windows Phone couldn’t get even more personal.
Windows Phone Store
The Windows Phone Store has been updated to make it far more easier to find apps that matter most to you. Check out collections to find recommendations on apps that will enhance your phone.
Among other improvements is the ability to automatically update apps and view a history of downloaded and purchased apps.
And Many More
That was just the tip of the iceberg, there’s so many other improvements to Windows Phone 8.1 such as Quiet Hours, more extensive searching, customizable notifications, VPN support, ability to sync settings across devices (including Windows 8 PCs), much more customization and personalization with Cortana, more Battery, Data, and Storage data, “WordFlow” keyboard support, just to name a few!
Windows Phone 8.1 will be rolled out to all WP8 devices soon. Two upcoming devices, however, the Nokia Lumia 635 (coming this month) and Nokia Lumia 930, will ship with Windows Phone 8.1.
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