After surfacing in various rumours, the Samsung ATIV SE has appeared on the Verizon website, with little in the way of an official fanfare announcement. The handset, which is exclusive to the US network and becomes Samsung's flagship Windows Phone device, is scheduled to start shipping next week. At launch it will be running Windows Phone 8.0, but is likely to be one of the first devices to receive the Windows Phone 8.1 update over-the-air (May or June).
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One of the more interesting aspects of the Build 2014 conference for developers was the principle of the unified Windows application. Can this really be a write-once run-everywhere (everywhere that is Microsoft)? Not quite, but it's as close as you can practically get and allows the Windows platform to be promoted as a single entity over all the platform options, which will be of benefit to Windows Phone.
Today at its Build developer event, Microsoft formally unveiled Windows Phone 8.1, the next generation of its mobile platform. Key highlights include the Cortana personal digital assistant, updated and more personal Start and lock screens, a refreshed notification experience with Action Centre, improved enterprise support, and the advent of Universal Apps that share a common code base between Windows 8 and Windows Phone.
The Nokia Lumia 630 and Lumia 635 were announced today by the Finnish company at Microsoft's Build 2014 conference. The low to mid-range handset comes in three variants - two of them are labelled as the Lumia 630, a 3G design with dual-SIM or single-SIM options, while the Lumia 635 brings 4G connectivity to the table.
The Nokia Lumia 930 was today officially announced by Nokia at Build 2014, essentially a world equivalent to the Verizon-exclusive Icon, but running Windows Phone 8.1 from the outset. The device can be thought of as a successor to both the Lumia 920 and 925 and has a five inch, 1080p resolution, AMOLED screen and a focus on media capture with a 20-megapixel PureView branded camera with Carl Zeiss optics, LED flash, and quad omnidirectional microphones. Availability is June 2014.
Microsoft's Build 2014 developer event starts today and the opening keynote is expected to include the official unveiling of Windows Phone 8.1. The event kicks off at around 08:30 PST (16:30 BST). We'll be updating this story with our live coverage and analysis as the event takes place.
Microsoft's BUILD 2014 developer event takes place tomorrow and it is widely expected that Windows Phone 8.1 will be officially announced during the main day one keynote. The keynote and subsequent sessions will be streamed via Microsoft's Channel 9 website starting from 08:30 PST (15:30 GMT, 16:30 BST). Nokia also has its own event tomorrow, taking place at 17:00 PST (0:00 GMT / 01:00 BST), where it is expected to announce its first Windows Phone 8.1 device.
The latest set of Kantar Worldpanel data, released today, shows mixed fortunes in terms of the sales share for Windows Phone devices in various market. Figures for the 3 months ending February 2014 suggests a slow down in growth in some of the platform's strongest markets (Italy, UK, France), but there are improved figures in the US and Germany.
Microsoft's €5.4 billion acquisition of Nokia's Devices & Services division, first announced back in September of last year and originally expected to close in the first quarter of this year, is now expected to be completed next month. While Microsoft has received regulatory approval "in 15 markets on five continents", it is still awaiting "approval confirmation in the final markets".
Microsoft today announced the availability of Office Lens, a Windows Phone app that its describes as a "OneNote scanner for your pocket". More prosacially, the provides a way to use your phone's camera to get the content from things like business cards, receipts, whiteboards, and douments into OneNote, Microsoft's note taking and information gathering tool.