Windows 10 Mobile: Vodafone Australia suggests rollout to older phones is imminent

It looks like Microsoft’s rollout of Windows 10 Mobile to older Lumia phones could be around the corner, as Vodafone Australia have posted a blog post claiming that their testing of the software is complete. The company cite the Lumia 640, 640 XL, 735 and 930, and says it is waiting for Microsoft to give the signal before it can roll out the updates.

Windows 10 Mobile: Vodafone Australia suggests rollout to older phones is imminent

While Microsoft has yet to give word on an official rollout of Windows 10 Mobile, a new test build for Windows Insiders was released on 8 January to little fanfare. The catchily titled Windows 10 Mobile build 10586.63 is reported by a Microsoft employee on Reddit to included improved Microsoft Band use with Cortana and turn-by-turn directions over Bluetooth while driving.

Windows 10 Mobile: Official release

Windows 10 bounded out of the gate on 29 July 2015 and, according to Microsoft, has since found a home on over 200 million devices. Windows 10 Mobile looks to be the next move for the Windows 10 behemoth. What is it, what does it do and when is it coming? Read on eager phone tappers. Read on.

Microsoft Lumia 950 XL review: Camera

Windows 10 Mobile: At a glance

  • Windows 10 OS for mobile, and the successor to Windows Phone 8.1
  • Aims to bring greater synchronisation between Windows 10 devices
  • Full rollout due in Q1 2016, potentially as soon as 12 January

Windows 10 Mobile: Release date

Microsoft originally slated the release of the Windows 10 Mobile update for December 2015, but this has since been pushed back to early 2016.

“This November we introduced Windows 10 to phones including brand new features such as Continuum and Universal Windows apps with the introduction of the Lumia 950 and 950 XL. The Windows 10 Mobile upgrade will begin rolling out early next year to select existing Windows 8 and 8.1 phones,” the company said in a statement to ZDNet.Microsoft Lumia 950 review

That could feasibly mean as soon as this month, or as late as March. Microsoft has given no clear reason for the delay, nor has it released a final list of exactly which older Windows Phone handsets will be able to get the OS update.

Microsoft announced at the beginning of January that Windows 10 is running on 200 million devices. It now seems that Windows 10 Mobile is responsible for one million of that figure.

ZDNet revealed in its Windows Weekly podcast that Microsoft’s latest OS is running on 180 million PCs, 18 million Xbox One consoles and over one million Windows 10 Mobile devices. ZDNet cites people familiar with the matter, although those figures haven’t been officially verified by Microsoft. 

Windows 10 Mobile: Features

Windows 10 Mobile on the Lumia 950 and 950 XL encompasses a number of core features, including Universal apps and Continuum, which allows the phones to essentially act as a PC when connected to a TV, keyboard and mouse.

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Microsoft hasn’t yet given details on the full range of Windows 10 features available to older phones, but Continuum certainly won’t be one of them. Universal apps, however, probably will – seeing as how being able to use the same app on PC and mobile is at the core of Microsoft’s Windows 10 strategy.

Windows 10 Mobile could also be getting Redstone updates (a nod to Minecraft, which is now owned by Microsoft).

International Business Times is reporting that Windows 10 Mobile users will get further updates in two parts, with the first coming around May/June and the second in November/December. Amongst the expected features included in the updates are the addition of a landscape mode for Windows 10 Mobile and improvements to Cortana and native apps such as OneDrive and Outlook Mail. 

Read our full Windows 10 review here.

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