This is one big week for Microsoft, Monday they introduce the Surface to the world, today they unveil Windows Phone 8 to the masses. Windows Phone 8 (WP8) is a huge advancement from the current generation of Windows Phone devices, which means Microsoft just upped their game big time.

For starters WP8 is built on the same exact core as Windows 8, which is huge news. This means that apps can be cross compatible, software developers will be able to build once and run in multiple places and multiple devices with minimal changes to code. Libraries are the same so developers wont be limited, oh and the games will be great!

Next up WP8 supports enhanced hardware specifications that are more inline with what we’re seeing from other more mature mobile OSes. This means Multi-Core chipsets, currently WP7 does not support multiple cores, with WP8 they’ve added support for Dual-Core & more (mentioned of up to 64-core support if needed). WP8 also supports multiple screen resolutions up to 720p (WVGA, WXGA, and 720p), which is a big step up from WVGA only, granted it’s no “retina” but not many phones are higher than 720p right now. WP8 has also added MicroSD card support, something that iOS may never do, and only certain versions of Android do.

WP8 like most current generation OSes also adds support for NFC (near-field-communication) for purchases (through ISIS and other functions), data sharing, gaming, etc. NFC may not have been fully adopted by retailers yet as everyone still tries to get a handle on security and authentication but the fact that the software supports it means that hardware manufacturers will start to incorporate it more and developers will utilize it more.

The story is still developing as the announcement is still ongoing but this is a huge advancement for Microsoft and the Windows Phone platform.

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