So far this week at Computex, we’ve seen some incredible laptops, desktops and tablets, and even some that combine the three, and some that take things up a notch we never thought we’d see, but one thing absent until now was some Windows Phone announcements, and at Microsoft’s keynote at Computex, that’s exactly what we got.
During Microsoft’s Build 2014, Microsoft discussed the much wider variety of Windows Phone hardware coming down the pipeline, whilst we’ve seen some incredible Nokia devices, which are now beginning to get released, as well as new Samsung devices, many were expecting something from HTC, something we haven’t realistically seen since the HTC 8S and HTC 8X, which seem like ages ago, basically because they were. But, during a Q & A, Microsoft’s OEM Chief, Nick Parker, did hint at some new HTC announcements at this years Computex, so let’s watch this space.
What did get announced though, was a range of Windows Phone devices from some of Microsoft’s lesser known Windows Phone OEMs, which we’ll look at now.
We’re kicking things straight off with already our favourite, and this comes from Blu. From the striking colour options, we have to say we love the featured green model, to a rather decent spec list, we’re more than happy with what, let’s not forget, is Blu’s first Windows Phone device.
Whilst most specifications are yet to be confirmed, based on the price we’re betting on the SnapDragon 400, but hoping on the 800, as this just looks like an incredible flagship device. Whilst, let’s be honest, it’s rather clear where most of the design inspiration has come from, you can’t deny that this thing looks pretty awesome.
The device has a 5 inch 720p display, leading us closer to the SnapDragon 400 inside, with hopefully 1GB at least of RAM so you can run all the latest Windows Phone apps and games, RAM was our biggest complaint over the Lumia 630/635.
Microsoft’s OEM Chairman did however hint of two Blu devices, but as of now we’ve just got this device so far. Whilst Blu currently have a range of Android devices under the ‘Dash’ branding, we currently do not know the name of this, or the other Blu device, although we had previously been teased another Windows Phone by Blu which we expect is the other device with lower specifications, shown below.
We say the more the merrier, the device above does look reminiscent to the Lumia 710, and even some highlights of Motorola’s devices such as the Moto G, in design, we’ll have to see more about both these devices as more information comes out. The device shown above was reported to house a 5 inch 480 x 854 (same as 630/635) display, 1.3GHz dual-core processor, 512MB of RAM, dual-SIM support and range around the price of $129USD.
Prestigio is one OEM which Microsoft’s Joe Belfiore has been hinting on for quite some time now, even showing a device during this years Build 2014 before kicking things off. One thing we do have on the Prestigio we don’t on the Blu device, is a name, this is the Prestigio MiltiPhone 8500 DUO. We’re yet to understand if we’re looking too far in to it, or if the two instances of DUO and Multi in the name are anything really other than branding, but we guess we’ll have to watch this space.
As far as specifications goes, they’re kind of sparse, but we do know if will have a Quad-Core processor inside, and, based on the render, a 1080p HD display as well as what’s quoted as a ‘decent’ pair of Cameras.
Yezz this is the device … OK we’ll stop the puns, but Yezz really? The last manufacture shown at the keynote with Windows Phone hardware was indeed Yezz. Yezz was the only manufacture to actually announce two Windows Phone 8 devices, known as the Billy 4.7 and Billy 4.0, as to be expected the numbers reflect the display size.
Both Yezz devices will interestingly be sold exclusively through Amazon through Europe and the Americas for around $139 / €129, and are expected to feature a HD display and a 480 x 854 on the higher and lower end models respectably. Both devices will feature Quad-Core hardware as well as 8MP shooters at the back.
Last, but not least is Wistron, who have definitely done something “big” with their Windows Phone 8 announcement, the Wistron Tiger. The Tiger is a high end Windows Phone 8.1 device from Wistron featuring amongst the usual expectancies, a massive 6.45 inch display … yowch that’s big!
Aside from the phablet sized display, which let’s remember is 0.45 inches bigger than that on the Lumia 1520, the Tiger features a very capable Quad Core SnapDragon 800 backed up with 2GB of RAM, and constructed entirely of aluminium delivering some incredible quality to the world of Windows Phone.
The device is also really thin and features dual front facing speakers up the front, making it the first Windows Phone 8 device after the HTC 8XT for Sprint to deliver the feature to the Windows Phone platform, which is awesome to see.
Whilst the Wistron Tiger is a high end handset, it does however take on some lower end Windows Phone device features, such as on screen buttons instead of Capacitive ones, no dedicated Camera button, but makes up for it with it’s design and construction which really is pretty nice.
And there you have it, whilst likely not Windows Phone devices to excite the masses, it is great to see more OEMs adopting Windows Phone, and taking advantage of Microsoft dropping licensing fees for the OS too with the lower cost prices. If we’re to be honest, we’re more excited about finding out about the new HTC device, as the rumour mill has been suggesting a Windows Phone HTC One M8 variant known as the W8, but we’ll have to see.