Windows Phone 2H lineup looks healthy, devices at all price points

The second half of the year for Windows Phone fans is coming into focus and it looks like a slew of new devices will be arriving in the near future. Everything from high-end to entry-level devices will make their debut, providing a refresh to the current offering of Windows Phone handsets.

Starting at the high end of the spectrum, HTC is coming back into the Windows Phone game with a variant of their One M8 that will run Windows Phone 8.1 GDR1 as it is said to support VoLTE which will arrive with the first update to 8.1. The device is said to be arriving in August of this year - the 21st to be specific - for an off-contract price of $610, and likely on a two-year contract for $199. This will surely be marketed as a premium device when it launches and the specs should reflect that since it includes BoomSound and DuoCamera support.

Moving down the line a bit we will see a mid-range Lumia come out, in the 7xx class, likely called the 730 when it makes its debut. Specs for this device are said to include a 5in display, a Snapdragon 400, Adreno 305 GPU, 8MP camera on the rear and a 'selfie cam' on the front of the device. The codename for this Lumia is said to be 'Tesla' and it could include Pureview branding to help boost the appeal of the device.

There is another Lumia is in the works as well that will have a 4.7in display and a 5MP front facing camera, according to The Verge. The phone is said to be marketed as the ultimate selfie phone, and if the price is right, could be highly attractive to the tween/teen demographic. No pricing information is known about this device, yet, but it's likely safe to say that it will probably be in the mid-range, and not an entry level device. The codename for this phone is 'Superman' and should arrive later this year.

At the low end of the spectrum there is also the Lumia 530, which Microsoft has already announced. This phone features a 4-inch LCD with FWVGA (854x480px) resolution, a quad-core 1.2GHz Qualcomm Snapdragon 200 processor, 512MB of RAM, 4GB of onboard storage (along with a microSD slot, which accepts cards up to 128GB) and there is a 5 MP shooter on the back of the device. This phone will cost around $115 off-contract and will arrive in August.

And then there is LG, who had a device show up in AdDuplex data this month, and which appears to be finally coming back into the Windows Phone family. The phone, referred to as the D635, is running Windows Phone 8.1, has a 720P display and a 5in screen. Based on those brief specs, we would think that this is likely a mid-range phone. 

There are other rumored devices floating out there too, like the 3D Touch phone from Microsoft which reportedly had its 3D features axed but could still live-on without this feature. It's worth noting too that Samsung, who has released Windows Phones in the past, has not made any new moves recently. Seeing that we will be entering the holiday shopping season in the next couple of months, if Samsung is going to release a Windows Phone, we should start hearing about it soon.

But what will all of these new Windows Phone devices run? Well, most will ship with Windows Phone 8.1 GDR 1 (sometimes called Update 1) that will bring new features like VoLTE support as well as native folders. We have been hearing for a couple of weeks that the platform has hit RTM, and based on the leaks of HTC's device launching in August with the update, this aligns to Microsoft's shipping model for OS updates.

It's also worth pointing out that since Microsoft has made Windows Phone free, it has landed many new partners that will be joining the Windows Phone ranks for the company and could start shipping devices this year too. While these vendors may not have household names, they do have a several new devices in the works as well that will join the ranks of the Microsoft, HTC, and LG phones mentioned above.

Putting together all the pieces, it looks like Microsoft will have a healthy lineup of Windows Phones hitting the market over the next couple of months. The real key will be whether or not Microsoft is able to grow its market share with the help of all these partners - but it will be some time before that information becomes available. 

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40 Comments

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Neowin saying Lumia 530 will be around $115 is wrong. AT&T is selling the 635 for $99 off contract. AT&T owned Cricket Wireless is selling the Lumia 630 (no LTE) for $49. There is no way the 530 which has a smaller display and less storage is going to cost $115, it will be cheaper.

The one thing I think they do need to announce before Christmas is a new phablet. The 1520 will be a year old by the end of the year.

We need a new Windows Phone Flagship in the US. I'm due for an upgrade Microsoft. I want to give you my money I just need a phone worthy of it.

Camden Krupala said,
We need a new Windows Phone Flagship in the US. I'm due for an upgrade Microsoft. I want to give you my money I just need a phone worthy of it.

Worldwide, not just in the US...

I'm saying the US because everybody else is getting the 930 and in the US it is exclusive to Verizon. But if they release a new one I would like to see it everywhere! And let's get rid of carrier exclusives too.

I think the 1020 is pretty niche already, no rush to push out a replacement, specially when lots of people say that even the 20MP PureView in the 930/Icon and 1520 take pictures just as good as the 40MP 1020 does.

No, it really doesn't. One of my best friends has a 1520 and I consistently take better picks on my 1020 than he does on his 1520. So, I'm absolutely waiting until a REAL successor to the 1020 is. Niche? Probably so. But it's a niche I'm absolutely a fan of.

Enron said,
Waiting for a new 1020.

It was cancelled.
I'm in the same boat as you. I broke my 1020 and no $ to fix. Using Lumia 625 until a compelling high-end phone is released.

Enron said,
Waiting for a new 1020.

With how fast things are coming out and how little leaks there are on them (IE, the 530 was reportedly not coming because of the 630 and 635 but BAM! 530 is coming soon, now a 730. And a HTC W8 in less than a month) there may be one in the works and we dont know it yet.

I am not sure what MS plan is though. If they do low-mid phones and have OEMs do high end? I dont know. It would be a shame to throw away those 41 megapixels though...

Scabrat said,
It would be a shame to throw away those 41 megapixels though...

Indeed it would. Since the company that made the sensor is no longer exclusive to Nokia, I'm sure we'll see it in another handset soon enough. Unfortunately it will probably be an Android phone.

Enron said,
Waiting for a new 1020.

I get my upgrade in January, so I'm hoping for a replacement by then. If not, I guess I'll have no choice but to gobble one up somehow (Amazon?). Not sure I want to pay the ridiculous price tag, though for an unlocked device.

Dot Matrix said,

I get my upgrade in January, so I'm hoping for a replacement by then. If not, I guess I'll have no choice but to gobble one up somehow (Amazon?). Not sure I want to pay the ridiculous price tag, though for an unlocked device.


Unbranded not an Unlocked... There is a big difference: no middleman holding up your updates.

StandingInAlley said,
Microsoft should really stop selling devices with 512mb ram. Charge $10 more but at least include 1GB ram.

A potential problem with doing that, is that you are "leaving behind" all existing owners of 512MB devices (and they are the majority). Also, minus games, there isn't much effect because of the lower RAM, since apps can only use so much memory anyway (upper limit imposed by the OS).

Using a Lumia 625 here with 512mb ram with 8.1 and it's a great experience. No lag or any noticeable performance problems whatsoever. Fast and snappy!

Why? The Lumia line especially covers everything from pre paid entry level to full blown perfomance. Perception may be one thing, but un needed ram on entry level phone is another. 512 is more than capable of handling 8.1 and basic day to day tasks. There will be plenty of mid range and full range offerings later this year.

Why? There are people who want just a cheap, basic smartphone for calling, messaging, some light browsing and the ability to run some light apps, and at the same time have a good, snappy UI/UX.

A 512 MB windows phone can easily cover all those without breaking the bank.

eddman said,
Why? There are people who want just a cheap, basic smartphone for calling, messaging, some light browsing and the ability to run some light apps, and at the same time have a good, snappy UI/UX.

A 512 MB windows phone can easily cover all those without breaking the bank.

Unless you are in the US where a smartphone is required to have a data plan...

jamieakers said,
Using a Lumia 625 here with 512mb ram with 8.1 and it's a great experience. No lag or any noticeable performance problems whatsoever. Fast and snappy!

I call shenanigans.
I'm using a Lumia 625 (Telus CA variant) with WP8.1 Dev preview (damn Telus) and it lags like crazy launching apps and initiating Cortana with long press on search. Maybe this is because I don't have Lumia Cyan update underneath but it's not as buttery smooth as the Samsung Focus (wp7.5) / Lumia 900 (wp7.5) / Lumia 920 (wp8.0) / Lumia 1020 (wp8.1 dp). I've owned all those phones and I experience lag compared to those units.

Speaking of the 625 on Telus, the Nokia site now lists the Cyan Update as available for that phone on that provider

Sraf said,
...

Thanks Sraf!

My phone still shows up to date with WP8.1 dev preview. Hope I don't have to use nokia suite to flash back to 8.0.

Edited by deadonthefloor, Jul 29 2014, 6:20pm :

deadonthefloor said,

I call shenanigans.

Maybe you have less available space than he does? I've noticed when my storage gets full, my phone lags a LOT.

deadonthefloor said,

Thanks Sraf!

My phone still shows up to date with WP8.1 dev preview. Hope I don't have to use nokia suite to flash back to 8.0.

You must roll back to WP8 first, then update to Cyan.

Also, I suggest doing a device reset after updating to clear up any possible issues. It helps sometimes.

StandingInAlley said,
Microsoft should really stop selling devices with 512mb ram. Charge $10 more but at least include 1GB ram.

Android OEMs arent giving up on it either, so Microsoft can't. Microsoft has to continue to push for keeping the spec requirements of WP down. If anything it should go down further. There is only a handful of apps that wont run on 512MB devices. Eventually some smartphone will be priced as a feature phone and it better be a Windows Phone. Because that phone will open up a whole new market in the thirdworld. Right now devices such as the 520 are doing great in such regions because relatively 'wealthy' customers can afford it. There is a MUCH larger market waiting.

eddman said,

You must roll back to WP8 first, then update to Cyan.

Also, I suggest doing a device reset after updating to clear up any possible issues. It helps sometimes.


See that wasn't the case initially and is only so because MS halted 8.1dp ->retail due to some edge case issues. If they enable it again I won't have to rollback.
ah well, guess I have a project this evening.

Cosmocronos said,

Unless you are in the US where a smartphone is required to have a data plan...

Yes, in the US you need to buy a data plan and what does that have to do with eddman's comment?