More Windows 8.1 features discovered in WinRT?

In December, a Nokia employee named Justin Angel wrote a post on his personal blog that claimed he found a way to turn the free trial versions of Windows 8 Modern apps into their full versions without paying for them. This week, Angel is back again, this time with a new post that claims he has found what could be new features in Microsoft's upcoming free Windows 8.1 update.

The lengthy and pretty technical post states that Angel looked at the various early Windows 8.1 operating system images that have been leaked to the Internet in the past couple of months. He said he examined the WinMD files from the leaks and compared them to the same files in the Windows 8 RTM SKU.

According to Angel, Modern apps in Windows 8.1 will support text-to-speech support via Microsoft's own speech platform for the first time. Another new feature that may make it into the final build is called GeoFenced activation. Basically, this means that apps can be made so that they are launched when a user bring their PC into or out of a specific geographic area. Angel says certain apps could use this kind of feature, such as "keeping tabs that small children don't stray too far, launching an app once entering a restaurant, etc."

Windows 8.1 could also offer support for Smart Cards via a new API and Angel says it will also have native support for all apps to render PDF documents. There's plenty of other things listed in his post but keep in mind that even if his observations are correct it's possible Microsoft might decide to remove these features from the final RTM version of Windows 8.1, which will likely be released later this fall.

Source: Justin Angel's blog

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17 Comments

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Just shows that they're going to be beefing up the WinRT APIs more and more with every update. Once they hit a point where you can do most of the stuff you could do with Win32 then that's when things start to get interesting real quick. As it stands in Win8.0 the APIs are of course lacking as they're 1.0. With Win 8.1 the APIs for RT are going to see a nice jump and I'd say we could very well think of them as v1.5 or even 2.0 depending on how much they add in.

The title is misleading as most people will think it's Windows RT. But WinRT is the Windows Runtime framework. All this stuff was discovered in the 8.1 leaks and has nothing to do with Windows RT.

i'm thinking of getting one. while most of my day is about MS Office and Exchange emails... then Skype, QQ, Lync. The only problem would be the bloody iTunes... Maybe i need to wait for the Pro2.. But i'm seriously in love with this thing...

AlexMagik said,
i'm thinking of getting one. while most of my day is about MS Office and Exchange emails... then Skype, QQ, Lync. The only problem would be the bloody iTunes... Maybe i need to wait for the Pro2.. But i'm seriously in love with this thing...

then get a Windows 8 tablet, not a tablet running Windows RT.
You'll be able to run iTunes on the desktop.

link8506 said,

then get a Windows 8 tablet, not a tablet running Windows RT.
You'll be able to run iTunes on the desktop.

i was thinking about the 128G pro... surface...

else what else there is that is nice, anybody got anything better (read bigger drive)?

AlexMagik said,

i was thinking about the 128G pro... surface...

else what else there is that is nice, anybody got anything better (read bigger drive)?


Lenovo Helix has 256 GB SSD.

j2006 said,
The 'geofenced' launch sounds awesome! Imagine the possibilities!

I imagine good things, as well as bad things. Picture this:

"I'm sorry but application XX is not supported in this region."

Mordkanin said,

Sounds like it's a launching thing.

There's already a Geolocation API that can do that at launch.

http://msdn.microsoft.com/en-u.../windows/apps/hh465139.aspx

Thanks for sharing this. Mark my words. In a not-so-distant future, there WILL be vendors out there selling licenses for different regions. Say, if you are in a continent/country/state and wants to use an application in another continent/country/state, the application will ask yo to 'pay up'.

j2006 said,
The 'geofenced' launch sounds awesome! Imagine the possibilities!

Yeah, if not abused... Windows Phone would probably benefit better from something like this though... WP 8.1?