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Microsoft has changed its tune recently. They have made a serious push to take advantage in the mobile computing explosion by creating software that is designed specifically for the mobile device user. When the software giant released Windows Phone 8 in the fourth quarter of 2012, many thought it was only a matter of time before the software would resonate with mobile users. Unfortunately for Microsoft, the smartphone market hasn’t been as friendly as the home and business computing market, and Windows Phone 8 has been a thorough disappointment.
Later this month, Microsoft will update their Windows Phone 8 offering with their first large-scale update, Windows Phone 8.1 (codename Blue). With it, they hope to begin improving their miniscule smartphone market share and if the early reviews are any indication, they are well on their way. After finishing the acquisition of Nokia earlier in 2014, Microsoft hopes that the Windows Phone 8.1 upgrade is the catalyst they need to compete in the smartphone market.
For Windows Phone 8 users who have appreciated the live-tile design and the sharp look and usability of the interface, it came at the expense of dedicated phone options, ease of use of the OS, and the app store selection.The Windows Phone 8 interface has been a challenge for developers. Many third-party vendors, who create apps and have come to advertise their appearance on the iTunes App Store and Google Play, are having hard times integrating options for the Windows App Store. This limits the selection available, and has prevented the interface’s large scale market saturation.
Going forward, Microsoft hopes that the newest update, Windows Phone 8.1, will present users reasons to switch. Two the the main features that the Windows Phone 8.1 update will bring are:
These are two of the most important features the Windows Phone 8.1 update will provide mobile users, but they aren’t the only ones. Many other improvements have been made, that include:
With all these obvious improvements, Microsoft is beginning to realize former CEO Steve Ballmer’s plan to alter Microsoft’s strategy in the devices and services arena and be a player in the mobile device market. Currently, Windows Phone 8.1 can be found on the Nokia Lumia 930, the Nokia Lumia 630, and the Nokia Lumia 635.
Windows Phone 8 users should expect an update to become available by the end of the month, depending on your service provider. Do you think that Microsoft can capture a larger market share with all the smartphone competition? Leave us your thoughts in the comments.