Microsoft’s Windows Phone platform is sort of a middle ground when it comes to its “open hardware” when compared against Android and iOS. Obviously, iOS only finds itself on Apple hardware and is completely closed.

Android, on the other hand, gives vendors pretty much full reign to do what they want, though Google does impose a few rules and regulations for those that want official Google app support for things like the Google Play Store. Then there is Windows Phone 8.

One of the things I really like about Windows Phone 8 is that they offer a wide variety of hardware like Android but also have bare minimums they enforce to make sure there is consistency and quality on their hardware.

The requirements have continued to change from Windows Phone 7 to 7.5 Tango, and now the Windows Phone 8 minimum requirements are here.

Once you read this list, you’ll have a better understanding of WHY Windows Phone 7 devices can’t upgrade to the new OS:

  • Minimum 512MB RAM for WVGA phones
  • minimum 1GB RAM for 720p / WXGA
  • Qualcomm Snapdragon S4 dual-core processor or better
  • at least 4GB of internal flash memory
  • GPS and A-GNSS
  • GLONASS is supported if OEMs decide to include it
  • micro-USB 2.0 support
  • 3.5mm stereo headphone jack with three-button detection support
  • Rear-facing AF camera with LED or Xenon flash, optional front-facing camera (both need to be VGA or better) and dedicated camera button
  • Accelerometer, proximity and ambient light sensors, as well as vibration motor
  • gyroscope and magnetometer are optional
  • 802.11b/g and Bluetooth
  • DirectX graphics hardware support with hardware acceleration for Direct3D
  • Multi-touch capacitive touch screen with four simultaneous points or better

The biggest hitters here are the change in RAM and the new dual-core processor route. All devices will now need dual-core processors and any future single-core device will be relegated to the budget bin and will probably run Windows 7.8.

It is also worth noting that Microsoft says that even though they only require 512MB for WVGA phones, 1GB is truly what they recommend for full and fast support of all there features. Interestingly enough, the new HTC Windows Phone 8 only has 512MB of RAM, I believe.

Having requirements like this is a good thing, even if that means leaving some devices out in the dark. Sure, I wish that Windows Phone 7 devices could jump to Windows Phone 8, but I understand that Microsoft is driving to cut the cord from its past with Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8.

Now, if Windows Phone 9 doesn’t support at least one or two existing Windows Phone 8 devices, then we’ll talk.

While Onuora seems to suggest he is rather indifferent to the newest version of Windows Phone, the more news I cover about it, the more I want to consider moving to the new phone OS. Anyone else strongly considering Windows Phone 8?

[ source ]
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  • Pratyush Nalam

    I would love to move to WP8, but only if future upgrades are covered. If they say WP9 won’t cover WP8 but hey we’ll launch WP8.9, people will be pissed