Linked by Thom Holwerda on Wed 9th Oct 2013 21:47 UTC

Paul Thurrot has a number of rumours up about Windows Phone 8.1. Two stand out to me.

Where GDR3 is widely expected to support 5- to 6-inch screens, 8.1 will supposedly support 7- to 10-inch screens as well. This obviously infringes on Windows RT/8.x tablets, so it's not clear what the thinking is there.

So, Windows RT will become even more pointless than it already is.

Aping the iPhone navigation model, Microsoft will apparently remove the Back button from the Windows Phone hardware specification with 8.1. The Back button just doesn't make sense, I was told: Users navigate away from an app by pressing the Start button and then open a new app, just like they do on iPhone. And the "back stack" is ill-understood by users: Most don't realize what they're doing when they repeatedly hit the Back button.

This I am not happy with. The back button is my main navigational input in both Android and Windows Phone, and I miss it dearly in iOS.

I'm just hoping on performance improvements, still my biggest issue with Windows Phone. I used my HTC 8X for a few hours today, and I was stunned by just how slow everything is compared to Android 4.3. Of course, application quality is another huge issue, but there's little Microsoft can do to convince developers that their Windows Phone applications are more than just side projects done between serious work on Android and iOS.

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It's no use. Evidence doesn't matter to people like him.

We were told Nokia had to go with Windows Phone because it would allow them to go for the premium segment - something they could not do with Android. This clearly turned out to be a mistake - Nokia does not compete at the high end (which is absolutely dominated by Samsung and Apple), and only manages to sell low-margin, cheap-ass phones.

So, the WP fanatics have done a complete 180 - low-margin, cheap-ass devices are now suddenly the saviours, even though Windows Phone was supposed to shield Nokia from this race to the bottom.

It's amazing to experience this 180 in such close-up, and so out in the open. Food for psychologists.

Edited 2013-10-10 09:49 UTC

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