The much-awaited Windows Phone 7.8 update is apparently going to start rolling out worldwide on January 31. That fits with Microsoft’s only detailed info on the matter, which claimed that the update would arrive in “early 2013“.
The timeline comes from the Facebook page of Windows Phone Colombia. So this might be pretty official. Then again, we haven’t yet had an actual announcement on the matter from Microsoft. If the January 31 date is real, that should come in the next few days.
Windows Phone 7.8 is meant to be the consolation prize for those who bought WP7 devices. None of those will ever get updated to WP8, Microsoft’s latest and greatest mobile operating system, so the company decided to throw WP7 device owners a bone with this update. It has some of the new user-facing features in WP8, so that could keep people happy.
WP 7.8 comes with resizable live tiles, Bluetooth file transfer support, new tile colors, Wi-Fi tethering, new boot screen, Office 14.5, the ability to set Google as the default search engine in Internet Explorer, and the Bing Picture wallpapers for the lockscreen.
One thing to keep in mind is that, even if Microsoft gives the official go-ahead for this update on January 31, that doesn’t mean that your particular device will get it on that date – or even close. If you didn’t buy your phone unlocked, and got it from a carrier, that company will have to approve it so it may take a while before you’ll be playing with WP 7.8.
Still, for those with unlocked phones, the beginning of February could bring a nice feature boost from Microsoft. Let’s hope so.
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