Windows Phone 7.8 will continue to be supported for the entry-level marketWindows Phone 8, the next generation of Microsoft’s mobile operating system, is expected to arrive on shelves sometime in fall this year, with support for much better hardware than before.
In fact, due to the fact that it designed Apollo to support multi-core architectures and the like, Microsoft announced that the current generation devices wouldn’t be upgraded to it.
Instead, the company will provide a Windows Phone 7.8 upgrade to existing users, in an attempt to provide them with features and capabilities similar to those included in the new platform.
However, since Windows Phone was already loaded on low-end devices, which came to shelves at affordable price points, the question that emerged was whether Windows Phone 8 would also be available on devices designed for the entry market.
According to Senior Product Manager for Windows Phone, Greg Sullivan, Windows Phone 8 was meant to scale both up and down, and this might indeed happen.
He also mentioned that Microsoft is determined to continue using the Windows Phone 7.8 platform for low-end devices, but that this is not an exclusive strategy.
“We will continue to support the current platform with the 256MB footprint in devices like the Lumia 610. And one of the points about the new architecture is that it will scale both up and down,” he said in an interview with knowyourmobile.
“In fact, having support for removable SD storage will enable OEMs to build devices with less storage initially that is user expandable, so the bill of materials is potentially even lower for the handsets,” he continued.
Windows Phone 8 won’t be pushed to existing devices due to their lower hardware capabilities, but Windows Phone 7.8 will manage to fit those perfectly.
What remains to be seen is how Microsoft will manage to bring devices to even lower price points, so as to be able to better compete with handsets running under Google’s Android operating system, which are already cheaper than Windows Phones.