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Microsoft has confirmed that the much awaited and much delayed Windows Phone 7.8 update for older smartphones will finally be released early next year.

In a post on the official Windows blog, Terry Myerson, Corporate Vice President of Windows Phone, revealed that the update intended for handsets currently stuck on Windows Phone 7.5 that have been deemed unfit for an upgrade to the latest Windows Phone 8 iteration of the OS will be rolled out “to as many devices as possible in early 2013”.

Windows Phone 8 start screen handsets generic

Among the improvements it brings are new lock screen features such as the option to automatically display the Bing Picture of the Day and improved password protection to prevent accident device wipes. The ability to resize Live Tiles in a new ‘edge-to-edge’ home screen is also new with the platform bump.

"Windows Phone 7.8 also includes some other cool stuff. It doubles the number of theme and accent colours - to 20 - so you can make your phone even more personal," said Myerson.

Alas, an exact release date for the refresh wasn’t provided, but this is sure to be detailed closer to availability. Our guess is the update will be ready to download by the end February or early March at the latest. So hang tight.


Windows Blog

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