Consumer Beta Version Of Win Phone 8 Released This Month

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Microsoft will show it’s first consumer beta version of their new Windows 8 smartphone offering at the World Mobile Congress later this month.

At a scheduled two hour event Microsoft is set to launch a campaign to claw back market share for their new offering which is set to be launched in Australia in September 2012.

Both HTC and Nokia, who are two Companies struggling in the Smartphone market, are tipped to go head-to-head in an effort to lure consumers back to the Windows platform.

The developer preview of the operating system was released in September, with the public beta now slated for February 29 and a Release Candidate still due before the final version is ready to ship.

Whether both x86 and ARM versions of the OS are released at the same time hasn’t been made official either, though it is likely.

More formally known as the “Windows 8 Consumer Preview”, the beta will feature some radical new features not previously revealed, the reports say.

Chief among these is the dropping of the Start button that has long occupied the left-bottom corner of the Windows desktop.

Reports say it will be replaced by a “hot corner” and a user interface that offers previews of “where you will navigate to after clicking on the new visual element.”

The interface can be activated either by mouse clicks or the touch of a finger.

As previously revealed, Windows 8 will feature a start-screen of large, touch-enabled colourful tiles linked to applications. Users will have the option of flipping to a more traditional desktop interface.

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