Wall of Lumias at Build
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Buzzkill: Yes, there’s a Lumia 825. No, that’s not Windows Phone 8.1

As Build enters its third and final day, there has been lots of circulating murmurs regarding Rudy Huyn’s “Wall of Windows Phones” i.e. the technological monstrosity that you see above. In other words, we’re getting a lot of “tips” on the matter and we want to knock out any hope or speculation.

The wall, based off of Rudy’s earlier trick of linking together many phones to display one large Bing/HERE map, has been around for some time now, but this time it has gone bigger thanks in part to Nokia who supplied the phones. Truth be told Nokia and Rudy were going to attempt a Guinness Book of World Records attempt, but due to the $30K fee you need to have them here, well, the idea was nixed.

Let’s head onto the rumors and speculation for some buzzkill…

Rumor #1: Those are Lumia 825s. Wait, what’s a Lumia 825?

HERE Maps Wall

True. Lumia 825s are a limited set of developer phones that are basically Lumia 820s. They were given to a selected bunch of devs right around the time Windows Phone 8 was getting ready to launch last year. It’s one of those secret-not-so-secret things, but yes, we’ve seen ‘em before and that’s what is on the wall. We've never mentioned it because frankly, it's a boring phone.

While we’re on the topic, there is also a Nokia ‘Phi’, which is a modified Lumia 920 for internal testing at Microsoft.

So no, there is nothing new there. At least “new” as in interesting.

 

Rumor #2 That's Windows Phone 8.1!

Wall of Apps

False. When Rudy’s Bing/HERE maps are not running, a program that highlights the top apps in the Windows Phone Store goes on to the displays, moving around and popping up.. That’s what you’ve seen in a few photos from other news sites with the “different size tiles” and what you see above.

We can 100% confirm that Windows Phone 8.1, which is still being developed and is in bits and pieces (i.e. branches) is not nearly ready to be shown off to the public. The SDK is also not ready either. In other words, there are quite a few months left before we see more about 8.1 and the idea that Microsoft would accidentally show it thousands of people at a conference is a bit…well, let’s just say unlikely.

In addition, it does seem as if Windows Phone 8.1 is behind schedule. After all, the Windows Team seems to be on the same page with the rest of Microsoft (e.g. Xbox One), but Windows Phone appears to be late—for whatever reason. Mentions of Windows Phone 8.1 have been found in the SDK and even Microsoft is referring to Windows Phone 8 as “8.0” in presentations here.

So things are close, but we’re still a ways out. Sorry, folks!

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Reader comments

Buzzkill: Yes, there’s a Lumia 825. No, that’s not Windows Phone 8.1

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Who said they were behind? Last I heard they were aiming for end of the year, and nothing in the article says that it's not coming before then, it just says it's not ready now.

It says that they're not in sync with the rest of Microsoft but it doesn't say that they are behind schedule.
 
"After all, the Windows Team seems to be on the same page with the rest of Microsoft (e.g. Xbox One), but Windows Phone appears to be late—for whatever reason." But that implies that they were aiming for the same timeframe but MJF would suggest that they are aiming for the end of the year / Q1 2014.

They are out of sync with the Windows 8.1 launch, but, once again, there is nothing to suggest they behind any of their own internal target dates for a Windows Phone 8.1 launch.

The rest of the Windows team have their preview versions out. Windows Phone is in "bits and pieces". I call that being late at least in releasing the preview.

"it doesn't say that they are behind schedule"
Actually, it does - you missed the important part: "it does seem as if Windows Phone 8.1 is behind schedule"

No. You're implying that the Windows Phone 8.1 update was expected at the same time, but no one has said that it is.

If it was expected at the same time it would be behind schedule, but if it was never planned to be release at the same time then it could still be on schedule.

My official line on this is: Windows Phone 8.1 itself is not behind schedule, but it is "off schedule" form Windows 8.1 (and maybe Xbox One)--at least that's how it seems. But there have not bee, to my knowledge, any actual delays on WP8.1.

"In addition, it does seem as if Windows Phone 8.1 is behind schedule. After all, the Windows Team seems to be on the same page with the rest of Microsoft (e.g. Xbox One), but Windows Phone appears to be late—for whatever reason. Mentions of Windows Phone 8.1 have been found in the SDK and even Microsoft is referring to Windows Phone 8 as “8.0” in presentations here."
Last paragraph.

Who said they were behind? Last I heard they were aiming for end of the year, and nothing in the article says that it's not coming before then, it just says it's not ready now.

 
IIRC correctly, I believe MJF said that GDR 2 (late summer) and 3 (End of year, Q4) were due out this year and Windows Phone Blue looked to be Q1 2014.  Maybe something changed but I don't see them being too far off from all of that. 

It's late in the sense that it is late internally. Their original goal was to keep WP 8.1 in line with the Windows 8.1 and Xbox One launch. So they didn't promote it publicly. But in reality, WP 8.1 is late.

Let's consider though that GDR 3 is expected to bring quad core and 1080p support, is there even going to be an 8.1 update for Windows Phone? I mean, they seem like major features to add to what is supposed to be a small update. Could the Windows Phone team be switching from their one major update a year cycle to a several smaller updates a year one?

A lot of Microsoft products switched to quarterly deliveries via smaller updates. The quad core and 1080p support are for new devices only, so not relevant as an update for existing users (which is why it doesn't require a point release)

I hate to point out that the last 'point update' needed new hardware, and no existing hardware received the update.

I can't believe you're still going on about this dude. Says point blank in the article that the windows phone team is behind schedule. I think you're arguing just for the sake of arguing

You can't believe I'm going on about this? Have you read anything I wrote posted or are you just yelling at everyone else to read the article? My points are in the points below, links are included. Reply with a relevant response or leave me the hell alone.

"In addition, it does SEEM as if Windows Phone 8.1 is behind schedule."

Note the word 'seem'. It doesn't say 'point blank' at all.

Reading comprehension rhodri. I didn't say the windows phone team is behind schedule point blank. I said, it says point blank in the article that they are behind schedule. The focus is on what Daniel wrote in the article. Whether they are behind schedule or not.. Only the windows phone team knows. But I can only comment on what my two eyes see written in the article. And it does indeed say in the last paragraph POINT BLANK... They are behind schedule.

as far back as April, we heard WP 8.1 was probably going to be released in 2014.  That would come from internal sources.  'Early' and 'Late' are relative terms but 2014 and 2014 is the same thing.
 
Another bit from MJF she said that Windows Phone Blue was due out AFTER windows blue, not at the same time.  Here are her words:

GDR3 is expected to be the last Windows Phone 8 OS update Microsoft releases before it introduces Windows Phone Blue. Windows Phone Blue is expected to arrive a number of months after Windows Blue, a k a Windows 8.1, possibly as late as early 2014.

 

Hopefully the renivations coming to microsoft on the 1st of July will correct this problem. Heres to hope the Windows Phone team merges with the Windows team or Mr. Joe Belfiore becomes the President of the Windows Phone program.

I was worried that the realignment of WP under windows division would make them change that OS to be more inline with Win8, but it looks like they realised some things are just better with WP (like the start screen) and are changing win 8 to match that

of course its behind. where else would it be? Early is a phrase never associated with WP

I see Ireland... actually a few times...  looks like some of the phones are showing wrong sections.

How long on average it takes since the finalization of a version of Windows Phone, passing through the phase of testing of carriers and OEMs, even the part that it is made available to the public? Some three months on average?

 

Considering something close to that ... If the next version of Windows Phone (whatever the name) be ready until September (gives time for that?) we can begin to receive it on our phones in late December or early January? I'm dreaming too much??

 

Typical roll-outs are around Sept/Oct and Mar/Apr. So we should see it this year... by November at the latest. If you're with AT&T add another 6 months :P 

I sure hope WP 8.1 isn't that far off, it seems they've moved very quick with Windows 8.1 so it makes me wonder if they had to pull people from the Windows Phone team to help speed things up?  

Uhhh. Yeah it is. Looks boring. Low res screen. Limited internal storage. Not much cheaper than 920. Boring.

I think they mean boring in that 825 is no different than 820, and thus not something exciting to talk about. Not that 820 itself is boring... as it's not. Esp in the US where 820 can easily be found for under $240 off contract.

OMG, I wasn't thought that a buzz like that will happen :D
 
So, yes, this is Lumia 825 (or 820 developer device) what is the difference between the 820 and the 825 ?
- It's written on the bottom "developer device - not for sale" as well as on the battery
- there is no headset or power adaptor, only a tiny usb cable in the box
This device is given to developers to help them to create their applications.
 
For tiles, it's the current 1000 first top apps, so there is some strange apps with flash logo, android logo, apple logo, etc.... 
 
 

Who else saw that the small tiles are in three rows?
Edit: and there are also the "normal small tiles" that already exist now

It's mentioned in the article specifically: "a program that highlights the top apps in the Windows Phone Store goes on to the displays, moving around and popping up.. That’s what you’ve seen in a few photos from other news sites with the “different size tiles” and what you see above."

 Windows Phone 8 was released on October 29, 2012.  A year without any major upgrade is late in smartphone standards.  We read about ios 5 and Android Key Lime Pie and we're jealous.  What about HTC 9x and Lumia 930 release date?
Nokia Lumia 920 was announced on September 5, 2012, so can we expect some major announcement around same time?
We need some love from Microsoft.