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Oct 9, 2013

Windows Phone 8.1 to Remove the Back Button, Support Larger Screens




Next year, Redmond-based software giant Microsoft is expected to release another update to its Windows Phone operating system, one that has leaked online a few times before under the codename of Blue, and which will bring some welcomed changes to devices, it seems.

Among these, we can count the removal of the Back button, which will no longer be included in the hardware specifications of devices powered by the OS (supposedly set to arrive as Windows Phone 8.1). Basically, users will be using the home button to exit an app, just as they can do on iOS devices at the moment, winsupersite explains. Additionally, Windows Phone 8.1 is expected to improve the multi-tasking capabilities of the platform, after GDR3 brings some improvements to the matter as well. One other interesting enhancement in the upcoming platform release will be the inclusion of support for screens larger than 7 inches, going all the way up to 10 inches. Windows Phone 8 GDR3 has been long rumored to come with support for screens of up to 6 inches, and the next OS release appears set to move beyond that.

This also confirms the fact that Microsoft is slowly bringing Windows Phone and Windows RT together, which means that there will be a single OS powering both smartphones and tablet PCs in the end. At the moment, Windows Phone 8 and Windows RT are said to share a 33 percent API unity, but Windows Phone 8.1 will increase the percentage to 77, it seems. This will also allow developers to target multiple devices with their applications. Additionally, winsupersite notes that Microsoft is aiming at turning Windows Phone into a high-end platform, despite the fact that it currently enjoys enormous success at the entry level of the market. However, it remains to be seen what exactly the company will do in this regard, especially given that it has recently been said to plan on focusing on lower-end Windows Phone handsets for the next 12 months or so.

Windows Phone 8
Image credits to Microsoft

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