News, Rumours, Windows Phone

Windows Phone 8.1 might finally bring a notification center, Siri-like voice assistant

Windows Phone 8.1 might finally bring along a notification center to the platform, whenever it comes along.

Windows Phone Lumia 720

This rumor comes from The Verge which states that the 8.1 update will also bring a Siri-like voice assistant called ‘Cortona’ according to “sources familiar with Microsoft’s plans.” Cortona will replace the current bing search on Windows Phone, and will work like Google Now, with conversational interaction and the ability to learn data and location context from the phone, so that it can remind you about upcoming events, or how long it’ll take you to reach somewhere, etc. The notification center will be enabled by swiping downwards from the top of the screen, just like iOS and Android. A short swipe will display a new quick settings panel, while a long swipe will display the notification center. There might also finally be seperate volume controls, so that you can control the ringtone volume seperately from media.

Nokia is rumored to be working on two Windows Phone 8.1 devices that will also be launched soon after the official WP8.1 announcement. One device, codenamed ‘Goldfinger’ will include a new ‘3D touch’ system to detect off-the-glass interactions, while their other device, codenamed ‘Moneypenny’ will use onscreen Windows Phone buttons, similar to what was leaked earlier this week.

Apparently WP8.1 is currently being beta tested, and will be announced at Microsoft’s Build Developer Conference in April, 2014.

If this is true, it means Microsoft will *finally* be listening to users and including the most requested features, all in one update that puts it on par with iOS and Android. Hopefully it wont be too long a way though.

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