Linked by Thom Holwerda on Mon 14th Apr 2014 16:59 UTC

Microsoft released Windows Phone 8.1 to those who enrolled in the developer preview program (i.e., everyone).

Ars' Peter Bright in his review of 8.1:

The result feels a whole lot more mature and a whole lot more capable than its predecessor. The 0.1 version bump, chosen to align the phone platform with its desktop sibling, belies the true nature of this upgrade. It is substantial, and makes Windows Phone tremendously better.

We might still wish that there were a few more apps, and that developers spoke of the platform in the same breath as iOS and Android, but even in spite of this, Windows Phone 8.1 is a polished, fun, clever, and personal smartphone platform that's just about everyone can enjoy. It's a magnificent smartphone platform.

I've been using it since earlier today, and the notification centre (finally) alone is more than enough to make this a fantastic update. Sadly, my HTC 8X does not seem to be supported by Cortana - other 8X owners are reporting the same, as do 8X owners on Twitter - which makes me worry a little about Cortana, perhaps, being an exclusive feature for Nokia phones, or it having some other restrictive limitations. That, honestly, would be a shame.

Update: Here's an 8X with Cortana working just fine, so the original worries clearly aren't necessary.

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RE[2]: Notifications
by Morgan on Tue 15th Apr 2014 19:09 UTC in reply to "RE: Notifications"
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Some (like skype) would lose context and restart and then you had to go and search for those yourself.

This is what really blows my mind when it comes to Microsoft and integration. Skype is a Microsoft service, why isn't it fully integrated into the WP OS? Even my five year old N900 has better, faster, more native Skype integration than Microsoft's own phones. If Microsoft can integrate Facebook messaging -- a third party service -- as seamlessly as they do into the messaging system, why not Skype too?

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