Microsoft unveils Windows Phone Update 3 introducing support for phablets, 1080p screens and quad-core chips

Microsoft has let the cat out of the bag - Windows Phone Update 3 is now official and it brings long awaited support for 1080p displays, quad-core chips and much more.

Windows Phone Update 3 is what many of you have heard of as General Distribution Release (GDR) 3. It comes to meet three huge goals Microsoft had: “Enable a new generation of incredible Windows Phone 8 devices, enhance the platform with new capabilities for current users and partners, and improve overall quality.”

On to the new features:

Microsoft unveils Windows Phone Update 3 introducing support for phablets, 1080p screens and quad-core chips
Larger screen, 1080p resolution - Update 3 expands the supported screen sizes so now Windows Phone can run on 5-inch and 6-inch devices. This is where Microsoft draws the line - 7” and larger devices will run on Windows 8.1. Those displays will not only be larger, they will support sharper resolutions as the new maximum is now set at 1080 x 1920 pixels. That’s a much anticipated improvement and something that Android has had for a year now.

Quad-core processors - This latest updates allows Windows Phone to run on quad-core devices, and more specifically on Qualcomm’s MSM8974 chip, commonly referred to as Snapdragon 800. Here again, Microsoft is playing catch-up to Android.

More Live Tiles - One appreciated feature on the sharper and larger displays is support for more Live Tiles. Instead of stretching 4 small Live Tiles across the home screen and making it all look ugly, Update 3 brings support for 6 small tiles in a row.

Screen lock, custom ringtones - Now you can lock the screen orientation to either portrait or landscape. You can also assign custom ringtones to almost anything - instant messages, emails, voicemails, and reminders.

Better multitasking, enhanced storage management - Multitasking in Update 3 allows you to manually close apps by hitting a big “X” button, and when it comes to storage you now have the option to see which apps and media use what amount of storage.

Other improvements - There is also a number of other improvements like a new Driving mode that would lock the screen while you drive and keep you safely focused on the road. Some things like accessing Wi-Fi during setup are now possible (more of a bug fix here), and Bluetooth tethering would also now remember devices you’ve connected to before and won’t ask for a password. Accessibility apps now include screen reader for blind and visually impaired, and tools for those with hearing problems.

The final question remains when can you get the Windows Phone Update 3. The release date is not exactly clear - it all depends on carriers to test, approve and push this, but if you are a developer you can get it right now via Microsoft's Developer program.


source: Tech Crunch

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65 Comments

1. Smokin

Posts: 120; Member since: Oct 10, 2013

Awesome!

15. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

i love wp's Multitasking screen than any other.

24. picka_vi_materina

Posts: 174; Member since: Nov 21, 2011

Yeah, the one which is a copy of iOS 7, which itself is a copy of Symbian Belle FP2.

26. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

WP Had this Multi tasking view back in 7.5 days..

32. vijaysivakula

Posts: 229; Member since: Aug 17, 2011

Yeah. WP had this Multi-tasking view back in 7.5 days.. which is a copy of the multi-tasking that WebOs had which was a copy of what Symbian had....

57. rodneyej1

Posts: 3576; Member since: Jul 06, 2013

So who gives a flip..

43. jaxson983

Posts: 43; Member since: Aug 11, 2013

ok let just put it out there....no one has copied or will copy iOS7

44. Muzhhur

Posts: 261; Member since: Sep 14, 2012

remainds me symbian on my old nokia N8

2. veer.d

Posts: 89; Member since: Jul 12, 2013

best of luck nokia

3. dritani

Posts: 18; Member since: Oct 14, 2013

Now we can say that Windows Phone is finally in the game...IOS fans and fandroids are warned: WP GDR3 is the real deal, Nokia+Microsoft will rule soon!!!

12. sprockkets

Posts: 1612; Member since: Jan 16, 2012

Having feature parity with your competitors rarely convinces people to change ship.

35. Penny

Posts: 1844; Member since: Feb 04, 2011

WP has an entirely different user experience than the competing platforms. In bringing WP into a level of feature parity with its competitors, Microsoft marginalizes the argument that WP is far behind its competitors and enables itself to better display where they distinguish themselves most: the actual implementation and user experience of the software. Not saying WP's user experience is necessarily better, but this should cause people to look at WP more seriously as a viable option, in which case you might find more people favoring their user experience.

49. UrbanPhantom

Posts: 949; Member since: Oct 30, 2012

Penny, how come you always sound so analytical? You need to learn to spit and swear at people, and carry a large spiked chain on your belt... I agree that WP is much different than either Android or iOS, but that's a good thing in my opinion. WP8 updates are also giving customization and technical features that were missing before. Now that Microsoft will own Nokia's D&S, I expect to see bigger and better things out of softy.

16. akki20892

Posts: 3902; Member since: Feb 04, 2013

i guess just only one Nokia, not wp. Wp is nothing without nokia. i guess ios have to worry not android because we will not gonna see android have below 60% of market share world wide.

20. WHoyton1

Posts: 1635; Member since: Feb 21, 2013

LOL good one WP has just got screen lock when android is progressing at a rate that WP can only dream!

22. No_Nonsense unregistered

Yawn, new looks don't mean progress.

50. UrbanPhantom

Posts: 949; Member since: Oct 30, 2012

If you mean viri, yes Android OS is well ahead. Nothing compares in terms of the Malware available for Android devices...

65. apple4never

Posts: 1064; Member since: May 08, 2013

now all they need is apps

4. itsdeepak4u2000

Posts: 3718; Member since: Nov 03, 2012

Huurrrrraaaayyyyyyyyy......... Good luck Nokia...

5. aco96

Posts: 244; Member since: Oct 12, 2012

I hope Samsung ATIV S will be the first one to get GDR3, just like GDR2. I really like multitasking improvement :D

34. HASHTAG unregistered

Yeah, I doubt that.

6. dickwyn

Posts: 621; Member since: May 07, 2012

still waiting for a notification center...zzz

7. Rongocook

Posts: 76; Member since: Sep 20, 2013

I love you m/s! Waiting 920 user.

8. chandancherry

Posts: 32; Member since: Jun 25, 2013

The 'X' Button and higher resolution support was badly needed. Better late than never MS. Good luck!

9. mottykels

Posts: 387; Member since: May 15, 2013

Notification center and cortona should have this update ;)

45. -box-

Posts: 3991; Member since: Jan 04, 2012

Probably will come next year in the form of GDR4 or Windows Phone 8.1 or WP9, depending on naming schemes.

61. SemperFiV12

Posts: 949; Member since: Nov 09, 2010

Probably Windows Phone 8.1

10. scriptwriter

Posts: 396; Member since: Nov 13, 2012

real dont understand some of the update features that windows push out. For instance: phablets, 1080p screens and quad-core chips, added support. To make the most of this update would require buying a new handset therefore rendering the update pointless. Am i the only one who has noticed this?

17. haseebzahid

Posts: 1853; Member since: Feb 22, 2012

i know right so thats why i been holding on Lumia800 still

31. Penny

Posts: 1844; Member since: Feb 04, 2011

Before you can focus on adding cool, advanced features, it is important that you focus on improving the core platform to allow more advanced features in the future. This update serves more as a background overhaul to put them into a better position to add the cool features people are after. GDR3 has a few user experience enhancements for current devices, but I suspect you will find many more software enhancements for current devices in WP 8.1.

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